Supply Chain System Development Assignment is dealing with the information systems, information systems and their impact on socio-technical system of an organization and it will also evaluate different types of management styles and organizational performance structure and their impact on information systems. Researcher would also be selecting and briefly applying a tool for modeling of information systems within a socio technical system. This assignment is aiming to ultimately enhance the understanding and critical awareness about the information system and their role in socio technical system of an organization. This research would be a qualitative research with approach of a secondary research and it would be collecting data from reliable literature sources for data collection (Hass, K, 2008).
RESEARCH AIM AND OBJECTIVE
This research is aiming to critically assess the impact of information systems on Juice Inn organization’s socio technical systems. It would also prepare a report to Pippa on present situation of the organization and impact of growth and expansion strategy on the information and socio technical systems.
ANALYSIS OF CURRENT SITUATION
Pippa Melon started the venture of healthy drinks, juices and snacks along with internet café 2 years back when one of tea café in village closed down and space was available for business. Pippa didn’t have to make many changes in the place and with minor changes in interior she launched her business. She became popular in the local area because of her services, taste and healthy offerings. As a business procurement procedure she focused on sourcing as much as possible material from local farms. This strategy had the benefit of products being healthy and fresh and also it gave a positive image to the company. Currently she is employing 8 part time employees in her venture. Her organizational structure is currently very flat in nature and there is no formal division of posts and job roles. As per shift cooking is done by Pippa herself or her employees. Her organization had a very good reputation in the local region and local council and villagers were helping her in different manner to improve her business. She is also sourcing two products from a nearby company by name fizzy bubbles and her supply chain has a weekly cycle of ordering which is catered by sales executives of fizzy bubble efficiently. Pippa also had the fortunate opportunity to align her business with the efforts of local council and school system to provide healthy food and drinks to the students. This drive enhanced her business significantly and now she is hoping that with a real estate company starting a new housing project nearby she would be getting new customers as many families would move in this project in future. She has some concerns regarding the taxation system which might increase with growing business turnover and take away her profit margin making it very difficult for her to serve the customer (Salembier, 2002). Secondly she is urged by the supplier company that she should order online as it will smoothen her supply chain significantly. To adapt to this demand she has to think about the impacts on her current working methods. Further she is also approached by a property developer firm with an offer to develop a chain of juice bars in neighboring 5 villages. Now Pippa is in a dilemma because on one hand she is interested in developing her business but she is also worried about the challenges and obstacles in developing a large chain of business. She is also worried that how she has to make changes in the organization structure, systems to be a commercially viable chain of juice bars and how would she fulfill the need of information system in the organization (Hongbin, 2006).
Read about Logistics Supply Chain Assignment.
- One of the prime missions of the organization currently while sourcing its maximum supplies from local farms and small to medium size companies of the area and provide them a healthy and tasty juice and snack offerings.
- Another mission of organization is to expand as a commercially viable juice bar chain in at least nearby 5 villages without making any changes on the quality of the offerings.
CATWOE analysis is usually done to assess the need of a business organization and it also prompt what a business wants to achieve in their long term and short term goals. In a CATWOE analysis there are 6 major elements associated with the framework namely customers, actors, transformation process, world view, owner and environmental constraints. There are two different CATWOE analysis presented here which will provide a brief picture of the organizational situation in context of different root definitions (Clark, 2005).
Customers:– currently local residents, school children and farmers of community are the biggest beneficiaries of business in its present form. Juice Inn is serving the needs of healthy snacks, food, internet needs and also provides a good business opportunity to local farmers who are supplying to the Juice Inn.
Actors:– Pippa the owner of the Juice in, her part employees and present suppliers like Fizzy Bubbles and local farms are the main actors in present situation of the organization and they are helping in solving in day to day requirements of the business.
Transformation process:– presently supply chain management and communication are the main process and systems which are affected by the issue.
World View:– wider impacts of the issue is that Pippa would need to develop an organizational system and structure. Pippa would also have to consider the management style and information system which would connect all stores in a seamless manner.
Owner:– Owner of the process is Pippa, building and real estate development company who is offering the development of business for Pippa.
Environmental Constraints:– There are environmental constraints like need of a information system, development of a robust supply chain system, developing regular supplier and procuring system.
CATWOE 2 (future issues and solutions)
Customers:– in future it is expected that residents of more than 5 villages and their school children would be the primary customers of Pippa’s retail venture. It is also expected that upcoming housing project would be providing a new wave of customers for the venture.
Actor:– Pippa would be leading the entire show of firm expansion along with a property development firm. It is expected that they would be working as a partner with Pippa. Her employee who would grow in number and become both full time and part time in nature would be assisting Pippa in her venture.
Transformation Process:– by this change there would be transformational changes in the current process of the business. There will an online procedure of ordering and managing products in the stores, billing and payment process is also expected to be automated and pricing would be done in such a manner that it remains commercially viable for the business.
World View:– On a wider picture there would be changes in the taxation structure of the organization and Pippa has to play the role of transformational leader leading a change in the entire organization. It is also expected that employee would require additional training to master the informational system required for the organization.
Environmental Constraints:– there are many environmental constraint sin adopting new systems and process in the organization. First constraint is legal clearance and taxation, second constraint would be developing infrastructure and information system, investment required for the entire organizational expansion, resistance to change by employees and their training for future roles.
EVALUATION OF IMPACT OF OPTION PROPOSED
A socio technical system can be explained as a very refined approach towards organizational development which will develop work design recognizing the interaction between people and technology in a work place. In essence it is the interface where technology and human behavior collective work for organizational process and development. Entire society and each part of this society are different types of socio technical systems. By technology it is not always meant using any advanced form of technology formed by machines and equipments but by technology it is meant that knowledge used in doing any process in a society is a socio technical system. When a socio technical system is referred in this assignment it is the interrelatedness between the social and technical aspects of an organization (Carvalho, 2006).
Organizational structure of Juice inn is very informal and flat in nature. It was initiated by a self employed entrepreneur lady Ms. Pippa who bought a place from a outgoing tea point and transformed it into a juice and internet bar. She developed the organization with a continuous support from local council and local people. On theoretical basis Juice Inn has a organic organizational structure. There were 8 part employees in the organization who were helping Ms. Pippa to handle customer and cook healthy snacks. There was no distinct job role for any employee and according to the need, requirement and shift of the employee. This type of organizational structure is usually seen in startup ventures where organization is still in a developmental phase and struggling to develop a specific organizational mission and vision for itself. This organization achieved initial success as a local juice Inn bar and internet café and they were enjoying patronage from local farmers. They have also developed a regular supply mechanism from a nearby manufacturing unit producing local brands of juices and cold beverages.
Management style of organization is also very informal in nature currently with very little incorporation of professional management in organizational decision making. Some of the well known management styles in organizational structure are autocratic, bureaucratic, democratic, paternalistic and permissive. In case of Juice Inn organization management style is purely autocratic in nature where final decisions are taken by the owner Ms. Pippa. Presently she is in charge of only one retail store and it can be managed by this management style. Employees are dependent majorly on the owner for making any decision other than routine activity and she is responsible for any profits and losses made by the business.
However with the expansion plan of developing a chain of juice bars in 5 different places organization has to develop a new management style in organization. First and foremost requirement in the target business model is decentralization of power of developing different touch points in organization where different levels of decisions can be taken. This expansion would be in association with another real estate firm. This firm would supply the required finance and resources for expansion and in turn they would obviously need some share in the ownership and management style of the organization. They being a professional real estate development company would have a more vertical hierarchy in the organization and their management style would be more decentralized and bureaucratic/democratic in nature (Sullivan, 2010).
Current socio technical system would be significantly impacted by the changing management styles and organizational structure. Currently organization is using direct communication and informal way of giving orders to its employees. As it is mentioned in the case study suppliers are ordered about the need of the organization on a weekly basis and they shipped through warehouse while payments are done on a monthly basis. Suppliers are already urging Juice Inn to make their orders online. Since Juice Inn is already having a internet café in its premises it is not a big deal for the organization to make their orders online. It would just require some basic usage training to the employees and owner of the company (Jacobides., 2007).
Considering this development and other needs of organizational expansion strategy the first impact on socio technical structure of the organization would be the changed needs of training and development of the employees. They would need basic understanding of business retail marketing, consumer behavior, managing a smooth supply chain and using advanced communication technologies like internet to optimize their activities as a big organization. Further it is also expected that unless efforts are made by the organization in a much focused manner there will be some gap between the local community and organization. To become a large chain of juice bars Ms. Pippa has to source its products from big suppliers who are able to provide supplies in a cost effective manner thus eliminating the need of local farmers. Currently local farmers are making the supplies and have a personal level relationship with the owner of the juice Inn and she gets a great deal of support from the local community.
These impacts would have both positive as well as negative impact on the organization. On critical evaluation it can be observed that on one hand organization would be able to manage the commercial viability of the business model and they might also be able to provide services and products in a more competitive manner and prices. This development would take place because of the economies of scale while making purchases and there would be some benefit associated with manufacturing everything in bulk and using advanced communication technologies which are cost effective to use once installed. However there would be additional expenditure of training employees, developing them towards their future roles and overcoming their resistance to change, local support would not be as enthusiastic as it was earlier. If local farmers are not involved in the supply chain in a healthy manner it would also impact the local repute and acceptance in the society in a negative manner. Currently organization enjoys the repute of a home grown business which is helping the community to keep their children healthy (Braha, 2007).
LEADERSHIP AND TEAM WORKING ISSUES
Leadership and team working issues would be faced by the organization at different levels of change in socio technical and informational systems. Ms. Pippa would have to play the role of both a leader and a manager simultaneously while leading her organization and employees towards new organizational structure and culture. Future organization would have a more professional environment, a hierarchy of organizational posts and job roles would be developed and there would be a particular person responsible for development of information system and socio technical system changes in the organization. Culture would be more rigid and there would be set rules and regulations for doing activities. Since organization in last 2 years has worked as a home grown venture with a flat structure and no distinctive job roles a sudden change in entire culture and environment would be very difficult for the employees as well as owner of the organization (John and Joe, 2002).
In terms of information system currently organization is having basic internet connections which are used to provide internet café services to the local villager. Now with a chain a retail stores providing similar products in different region and committed towards maintaining similar quality in all products and services, organization would have to develop an information system which is easy to understand, cost effective in nature, requires minimal infrastructure and installation cost and provides real time communication. Such information system should have the capability to communicate both internally and externally in the organization. Developing intranet and using instant chat and mailing system is a reasonable solution for the current requirements of organization with expansion in 5 different locations. This information system will enable the employees to communicate with each other and get information on movement of products, changes in the product preparation, supply chain status, availability in other stores, taking back up human resources and products from other stores on a regular basis. There would be different departments in the organization who can coordinate with each other and make the entire systems centralized using information systems.
In this development power would be de centralized to give some breadth to the organization for growth and development while activities for the organization would be centralized using information systems. Centralization of activities and controlling them from a main office or branch would make it easier for the owners of the company to ensure that each and every store in the chain is able to provide same quality of product and service with similar cost (Kock, 2002).
Team working would play a very critical role in developing organization towards its expansion. In order to adjust with the changing socio technical structure of the organization employees can be selected from the staff and they would be developed as champion of change management. These champions would lead small teams of employees towards these changes and help them to align their activities with the long term organizational goals and objectives. First step in ensuring team working in the employees is to make them understand the benefits and advantages associated with the changing paradigms in organization and how they are beneficial for their career path and personal goals. After this stage employees are trained for the desired job role and they are guided by the team leaders towards a specific objective. In this case study analysis it is observed that there would be some initial obstacles in expanding the business which is a not a unique phenomenon but with correct implementation strategy and applying appropriate methods to ensure being connected to the ground realities and objectively fulfilling their social responsibility will help them in restoring their image as a socially concerned and community oriented organization (Rainer, 2009).
Read about McDonald’s Supply Chain Management.
Interaction and optimization are two basic principles on which a socio technical system is based and in this assignment both interactions and optimization of activities are critically analyzed. It is ensured in the organizational expansion that there is a ongoing interaction between the employees and changing technology and management style while on the same time each activity is optimized in such a manner that they would help organization in realizing their long term goals and objectives (Robbins, 2007).
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