Establishing Information Systems Essay

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Donna, the CEO, wants you, as a new employee, to critically analyze the IS setup and organizational hierarchy before your first Executive Committee Meeting (ECM).
Click here and view an expanded explanation of FYC\’s structure. See files!
The Executive Committee so far consists of Donna and Director-level-and-above associates: Tom, Karen, Annika, Dan, Lara, Kevin, and Debbie.
1) Do you agree with the role of ISs and the importance placed on them in FYC? Why or why not?
2) With the given information so far, what are the greatest issues with the organizational processes?
3) What changes would you propose?
4) Explain your stance and the importance of ISs in the organization. Think strategically using the standard organizational definitions.
5) Critique FYC\’s organizational structure, hierarchy, and interdependence on IS.
Refer to files for terms needed to be used above.

Phase 1: Establishing Information Systems\’ place at the table
1. IS started a revolution
2. IS assists in accountability and management
3. IS is the platform of business
4. The evolutionary history of IS
5. Emerging technologies
6. Business Intelligence
Objective:
• Analyze the role of information and information systems in organizations.
Scenario:
For Your Comfort (FYC), an ergonomic furniture manufacturing company was a dream founded by Ronald J. Dirksen and Richard Woodart in 1947, the year after World War II ended. War veterans were returning home and wanted to lead a life of material comfort; FYC\’s trademark Easy Couch was a seller! The company expanded its line of furniture into both residential and commercial office furniture but remained largely a small-town family-owned boutique for many years. In the early 1980s, FYC introduced \”mail-order\” selling which increased its revenues substantially. FYC gained gradual recognition with its introduction of an \”ergonomically friendly\” office and home furniture line in the late 1980s and opened 2 branches in different cities during the decade. It also started sourcing timber from Canada and South East Asia and some hardware, hinges, saws, and fasteners from China. The 1990s saw FYC branch out to new territories by owning and operating branch stores. There are currently 16 stores throughout the USA with the manufacturing plant at its base. The biggest store in each city is equipped with a clearance floor, which holds items that are rejects, used returns, or items that are simply out of style but are marked down consistently until they are sold. In 1999, Ronald J. Dirksen, CEO, passed away, leaving the business to his daughter, Donna Dirksen, a smart Berkeley-educated mechanical engineer.
Donna had several challenging tasks on her hands: sorting out the operations and finances of the company; knowing her employees; riding through the recession of early 2000\’s; and getting the company out of the red. Before she took over, the company\’s sales had been slipping, and it even suffered a small loss one year due to increased competition. With Donna at the helm, the company\’s profitability and product line visibility grew but still functioned in an old-fashioned way. Both fixed and variable costs were very high in comparison to industry averages, and Donna had some concerns: high paper-based transaction volume; delayed processes (especially in invoicing and collections); expensive overhead costs in managing different locations (franchisees and employees), internal departments, ineffective marketing campaigns; and lack of latest technology (old POS systems and applications).
Donna, who is quite technologically savvy, has analyzed many furniture and other retail organizations which have shown remarkable profitability through a well-managed technologically-upgraded IS strategy. She wants to invest in new technologies and a sound IT strategy aligned with FYC\’s business to turn the company around. She has hired you as the IT leader in the organization who will spearhead the alignment of IT and business goals; capitalize on the latest emerging technologies, e-business, and IT management; and harness that information to aid corporate growth.
FILE:
For Your Comfort (FYC), an ergonomic furniture manufacturing company was a dream founded
by Ronald J. Dirksen and Richard Woodart in 1947, the year after World War II ended. War
veterans were returning home and wanted to lead a life of material comfort; FYC’s trademark
Easy Couch was a seller! The company expanded its line of furniture into both residential and
commercial office furniture but remained largely a small-town family-owned boutique for many
years. In the early 1980s, FYC introduced “mail-order” selling which increased its revenues
substantially. FYC gained gradual recognition with its introduction of an “ergonomically friendly”
office and home furniture line in the late 1980s and opened 2 branches in different cities during the decade. It also started sourcing timber from Canada and South East Asia and some
hardware, hinges, saws, and fasteners from China. The 1990s saw FYC branch out to new
territories by owning and operating branch stores. There are currently 16 stores throughout the USA with the manufacturing plant at its base. The biggest store in each city is equipped with a clearance floor, which holds items that are rejects, used returns, or items that are simply out of style but are marked down consistently until they are sold. In 1999, Ronald J. Dirksen, CEO, passed away, leaving the business to his daughter, Donna Dirksen, a smart Berkeley-educated mechanical engineer.
Donna had several challenging tasks in her hand—sorting out the operations and finances of the company, knowing her employees, tiding through the recession of early 2000\’s, and getting the company out of the red. Before she took over, the company’s sales had been slipping, and it even suffered a small loss one year due to increased competition. With Donna at the helm, the company’s profitability and product line visibility grew but still functioned in an old-fashioned way.
Both fixed and variable costs were very high in comparison to the industry averages and Donna had some concerns: high paper-based transaction volume, delayed processes (especially in invoicing and collections), expensive overhead costs in managing different locations (franchisees and employees) and internal departments, ineffective marketing campaigns, and lack of latest technology (old POS systems and applications).

Donna currently has 5 direct reports:

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