business processes

business processes

Q1.

(10 points)  Define business processes and describe the role they play in organizations. Identify and describe the different levels in a business firm and their

information needs. Define collaboration and social business and explain why they have become so important in business today.

Q2.

(10 points) Read case study “Piloting Procter and Gamble from Decision Cockpits” on page 51. Then answer the following questions:
a)      What are the business benefits of Business Sufficiency, Business Sphere, and Decision Cockpits?
b)     What people, organization, and technology issues has to be addressed when implementing Business Sufficiency, Business Sphere, and Decision Cockpits?
c)      How are these systems related to P&G’s business strategy?

Q3.

(10 points) Watch the video cases in Chapter 2 folder on the blackboard. Select one case and answer three questions from the list of Case Questions in that case.

Video Case
Video Case 1: Walmart’s Retail Link Supply Chain
Summary: An introduction to Walmart’s Retail Link system, one of the largest B2B supply-chain systems in the world. Retail Link connects consumer purchase data to the

Walmart purchasing system and to vendor supply systems. Retail Link plays a key role in Walmart’s corporate strategy to become the dominant low-cost provider of retail

goods.
Video URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SUe-tSabKag
Case Questions:
1.    Where does Walmart’s supply chain start? What triggers Walmart’s Retail Link system to ship goods to local Walmart stores?
2.    Why is a detailed knowledge of consumer purchases at each store important to Walmart’s success?
3.    Why can’t other large retailers easily duplicate Walmart’s Retail Link?
4.    Why does Walmart encourage its vendors to learn how to use Retail Link?

Video Case 2: Salesforce.com – The Emerging Social Enterprise
Summary: Salesforce.com is the leading provider of enterprise cloud-computing applications with 2011 revenues of $1.6 billion. It provides a comprehensive customer and

collaboration relationship management, or CRM, service to businesses of all sizes and industries worldwide and a technology platform for customers and developers to

build and run business applications. Recently they have made a number of acquisitions of social technology firms and now offer cloud-based social enterprise services

to their primary customers such as Toyota, Gatorade, and Groupon. Salesforce is building private social networks for large corporations and their customers. In

addition, Salesforce.com is attempting to transform itself into a social enterprise. Comcast (the second largest cable television network operator in the United

States) has also begun to use social platforms like Twitter to respond to customers, a first step in the process of becoming a social enterprise. There are two videos

in this case:
•    Video 1 URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFOyKnu8INY
•    Video 2 URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WxC0X7ypaDQ&feature=relmfu
Case Questions:
1.    How did Comcast join public social networks? What difference did it make for Comcast’s business? What might be the benefits for a consumer?
2.    What issues and challenges is the use of social network monitoring supposed to solve or address at Salesforce.com?
3.    Radian 6 (now owned by Salesforce) is described as a “listening and engagement platform.” What does this mean and how does it differ from traditional marketing

techniques for communicating with the customer?
4.    What are some of the measures you can use to measure the success of a social business approach? Name at least four measures of social business impact. What

does it mean to measure the success of a company in terms of its “share of concversation”?
5.    How did Salesforce organize its social business initiative? Why was it important to make social enterprise a full time job?
Video Case 3: How FedEx Works: Inside the Memphis Super Hub
Summary: This inside story of how enterprise-wide systems power the FedEx Memphis Hub, the world’s largest air-cargo facility. This video descrives the various

business processes and information technologies used to process over 2 million packages a day at the Memphis Hub.
Video URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iYzQ7JSBIGU
Case Questions:
1.    List the business processes displayed in the video.
2.    List the types of information systems shown in the video. Can you describe how systems that were not shown might be used at FedEx?
3.    The system displayed in the video is an enterprise system. Why is this true? Explain your answer.
4.    What are the risks and benefits of having a single Super Hub in Memphis coordinate the delivery of packages across the United States?
5.    How could FedEx’s shipping process be made even more efficient?

Q4.

(12 points) Improving Decision Making: Using a Spreadsheet to Analyze Supplier Performance and Pricing:
You run a company that manufactures aircraft components. You have many competitors who are trying to offer lower prices and better service to customers, and you are

trying to determine whether you can benefit from better supply chain management.  The attached spreadsheet file Suppliers.xls contains a list of all of the items that

your firm has ordered from its suppliers during the past three months. The fields in the spreadsheet file include vendor name, vendor identification number,

purchaser’s order number, item identification number and item description (for each item ordered from the vendor), cost per item, number of units of the item ordered

(quantity), total cost of each order, vendor’s accounts payable (A/P) terms, order data, and actual arrival date for each order. Use Microsoft Excel to create three

tables that help you identify better suppliers based on the following criteria:

a.    The suppliers delivering on-time.
b.    The suppliers offering the best accounts payable terms.
c.    The suppliers offering lower pricing when the same item can be provided by multiple suppliers.
This exercise requires you to use spreadsheet functions and formulas. At a minimum, you should know how to sort the database by various criteria. The A/P Terms is

expressed as the number of days that you have to pay the vendor for a purchase. The vendor that allows customers the longest amount of time to pay for an order would,

of course, offer the most favorable payment. You may need to add additional columns for calculating the actual delivery time for each order and the number of days the

delivery is late. These numbers are useful when determining who is the vendor with the best on-time delivery track record.