IFSM300 Stages 1 to 4

Before you begin this assignment, be sure you:

1. Have completed all previously assigned readings, particularly those assigned in Week 1 of the class

2. Read the “Haircuts Case Study” and review the “Walmart Example.”

Text box: purpose of this assignment this assignment gives you the opportunity to apply the concepts of the porter five forces model to a specific business, explain and support an identified a strategy for competitive advantage for haircuts, and analyze the identified business process that could be improved with the use of technology. this assignment specifically addresses the following course outcomes to enable you to: • analyze business strategy to recognize how technology solutions enable strategic outcomes • analyze internal and external business processes to identify information systems requirements • analyze business strategy to recognize how technology solutions enable strategic outcomes analyze internal and external business processes to identify information systems requirements

 

 

 

 

Overview of Business Environment Analysis for Haircuts

Haircuts has been in business since 1995 and has seen an increase in competition from a variety of competitors, as described in the Case Study. With the news that a Hair Cuttery is likely to open only five miles away, Myra, the owner of Haircuts,is concerned and has begun analyzing her situation and what could be done to remain competitive in this changing environment. She has recognized that scheduling her employees and her customers is causing her problems, and she thinks she should focus on that first, as it is fundamental to her business. Myra also believes that there must be a technology solution that could help her run her salon, but she has no idea where to start.

You are a Systems Analyst, and Myra has asked you to help her with determining how she can improve her business. Myra has requested, specifically, that you verify and provide added support to her own analysis that has resulted in the identification of a Strategy for Competitive Advantage and a Business Process for Improvement. This will be the basis for defining business and systems requirements for an IT solution. This Strategy and IT Solution will help to bring Haircuts into the 21st century and take advantage of current technology. You will analyze her business environment using Porter’s Five Forces Analysis. Then, you will use the results of that analysis to explain how it supports Myra’s Strategy for Competitive Advantage, and the business process that she selected for improvement through the use of technology.

It is important to note that a business owner has many areas where improvements can be made, such as: staff, building facility, supplier agreements, advertising, etc. There are also many possible solutions that could improve the business strategy and processes. Since time and costs are involved, the owner should address basic problems first in choosing the strategy and which processes to improve. (Consider a lemonade stand; while it would be nice to have a chair to sit behind a table to serve the lemonade to customers, that is not crucial; however, having lemonade and cups are crucial to the business.)

A second important concept for this class is that, among all the ways that competitive advantage and processes can be improved, the focus is on information technology solutions. In your role as a Systems Analyst, you will be supporting Myra’s selected strategy and process for improvement, and proposing an appropriate IT solution. This work begins with an analysis of Haircuts using the Five Forces Model.

Five Forces Analysis:

You know that Michael Porter’s Five Forces Model is a useful tool for analyzing a business. The Model is used to help understand the importance of the five competitive forces and determine a strategy to develop and maintain a competitive advantage. The Five Forces are described and discussed in Chapter 7 of the e-textbook. They are:

  • Buyer Power
  • Supplier power
  • Threat of substitute products or services
  • Threat of new entrants
  • Rivalry among existing competitors

Strategy for Competitive Advantage:

After reviewing Porter’s Generic Strategies for competitive advantage, as shown in the table below, Myra has decided on the Cost Leadership Strategy because she wants to provide a variety of services at a cost that is lower than her competitors and thereby attract more customers. She knows that she can offer lower costs than the Hair Cuttery that is opening nearby, but she will need to make some improvements to do that.

In your role as Systems Analyst, Myra wants you to provide solid justification for the strategy for competitive advantage and the business process that she has selected, and help her determine if an information technology solution can help.Following a Five Forces Analysis and selection of a strategy for competitive advantage, the next step is to identify a process for improvement that will support the strategy and provide the most benefit, and position the business for future improvements. While there are several areas in need of improvement, Myra has decided that Customer and Employee Scheduling is the most important process to be improved.

 

 

Assignment: Haircuts Stage 1:Create a document that includes:

I.Introduction

Brief introduction providing the background of the case, why you are writing and what is to come in your paper. This should only be 3-5 sentences.

I

· Relate the strategy back to each of Porter’s five forces discussing the impact of the strategy based on your assessment of the force (positive, negative, or neutral).

 

IV.Business Process

 

· Explain how the process Myra has identified to be improved – Customer and Employee Scheduling — is related to and supports the strategy for competitive advantage Myra selected.

· Explain generally how a technology solution could help improve the process. (Do not provide any specific solution.)

References:Provide at least one external resource in your paper on an area of your choice. Note that two or more external resources are required for maximum points. An external resource is a resource other than those provided in the class or textbook. Incorporate a properly formatted APA citation in the text of your document. Then, place an APA style reference page at the end of your document.

Formatting:

 

For academic writing, the writer is expected to write in the third person. In third person, the writer avoids the pronouns I, we, my, and ours. The third person is used to make the writing more objective by taking the individual, the “self,” out of the writing. This method is very helpful for academic writing, a form in which facts, not opinion, drive the tone of the text. Writing in the third person allows the writer to come across as unbiased and thus more informed.

 

· Write a short concise paper: 2-3 double spaced pages of content; table entries for the Five Forces analysis should be single spaced.

· Use at least one external resources with APA formatted citation and reference.

· Include a title page and a reference page.

· Compare your work to the Grading Rubric below to be sure you have met content and quality criteria.

· Submit your paper as a Word document, or a document that can be read in Word.

· Your submission should include your last name first in the filename: Lastname_firstname_Stage_1

 

GRADING RUBRIC:

 

The “right” and “wrong” answers have to do with whether or not you correctly incorporated the course vocabulary and concepts from the textbook to support your choices and have addressed

 

 

WEEK 2

 

 

you:

1. Have completed all previously assigned readings, particularly those assigned in Week 2.

2. Re-read the “Haircuts Case Study” and the Stage 1 assignment, and review the “Walmart Example,” beginning with “Background for Stage 2” on page 3.

3. Review Instructor feedback from the Stage 1 assignment.

4. Carefully review the Example shown following the Assignment instructions below.

 

Text box: purpose of this assignment this assignment demonstrates how business processes are analyzed to develop information systems functional (business) requirements. this assignment specifically addresses the following course outcome to enable you to: • analyze internal and external business processes to identify information systems requirements

 

 

 

 

 

 

Overview of Business Process Analysis and Functional Requirements for Haircuts

For your Case Study Stage 1 assignment, you performed a Five Forces Analysis and justified Myra’s chosen strategy for competitive advantage andthe business processthat she would like to improve through the application of technology.

In the Stage 2 assignment, you will identify the inputs, processing, and outputs of Myra’s selected business process.Those inputs, processing, and outputs form the functional (business) requirements for an IT system to improve the process.

The first step in identifying the functional or business requirements for an information system is to develop the high level requirements that establish the scope of the system. Myra has selected the Customer and Employee Scheduling Process for improvement using an IT solution, and together you have identified the following high level requirements. The system must:

· Allow employees to enter their availability and desired days/times to work

· Allow Myra to review the employee requests and develop a schedule

· Make the schedule available to employees to review their final work schedule

· Make the employee schedule available for staff to enter customer appointments

· Allow Myra and the staff to enter customer appointments

· Keep track of customer appointments, including stylist and service performed

· Accommodate changes in the employee schedules and customer appointments, and update the schedule accordingly

· Accommodate changes in the customer information stored in the system

· Provide management reports to Myra showing employee workload, customers served, customer contact information, busy times/days, etc.

For this assignment, you will focus on the customer appointment portion of the overall process. The high level requirements are not detailed enough to be used as the functional or business requirements. More detailed requirements are developed using a variety of tools and methods. One such tool is a process model. The process model shows the steps in the customer appointment process. In a process model, rectangles are used to illustrate process steps and diamonds are used where decisions, or choices, are made. You need to be aware that there are other aspects of the process to be considered, as shown in the high level requirements above. The points at which these additional steps intersect with the customer appointment process are shown in the process model with a circle.

 

Customer Appointment Process Model: The Customer Appointment Process model is separately provided as an Excel file, labeled “Stage 2 Customer Appointment Process Model.”

Assignment: Haircuts Stage 2: Using the Customer Appointment Process Model, create a document that includes:

I.Introduction

At the top of your paper, show the strategy for competitive advantage that Myra selected and the business process she has chosen to improve, using the following format:

Generic Strategy for Competitive Advantage: xxxxxxx (just name the strategy)

Business Process to Be Improved: xxxxxxxxx (just name the process)

II.Table of Functional (Business) Requirements

Copy the table below into your paper. Using the Customer Appointment Process Model provided complete the table of requirements for an IT system, for each of the numbered process steps, that includes:

· the inputs to the process – include specific items of information or data elements (for example, customer name) entered into the system as part of the process step

· processing or actions that the system takes (for example, check calendar to let person know if Haircuts is open at the specified time)

· outputs of the process – include specific items of information or data elements (for example, appointment date) that the system will display or print out for the user to see

There are 7 numbered steps in the Appointment Process itself. In addition, there are two other processes that are needed (numbered 8 and 9), but are beyond the scope of the appointment process: a process for entering the time needed and costs for the various styling services; and the payment process that collects customer payments and updates the database accordingly. For these two processes, you should also identify theinput needed for the system, what the system is to do with that input (process) and what output the system will need to create or display either immediately or later.

The responses that you enter into the table for each requirement must be aligned to the specific business process to be improved and the data it uses, and it must be appropriate to the Haircuts business.

Note: Processes are actions that the system will take and should include action verbs. Inputs and outputs are not actions, but are data or information. If you need to use action words (verbs) to describe the input or output, they should be kept to a minimum and put in parentheses.

 

 

dates and times employee is available for work Confirmation that dates and times have been saved

Formatting:

For academic writing, the writer is expected to write in the third person. In third person, the writer avoids the pronouns I, we, my, and our. The third person is used to make the writing more objective by taking the individual, the “self,” out of the writing. This method is very helpful for academic writing, a form in which facts, not opinion, drive the tone of the text. Writing in the third person allows the writer to come across as unbiased and thus more informed.

 

· Submit a document that includes the Table of Functional Requirements.

· Table entries should be single spaced.

· Use APA formatted citations and references for any external sources used.

· Include a title page, and a reference page if references are included.

· Compare your final work to the rubric to be sure you have met content and quality criteria.

· Submit your paper as a Word document, or a document that can be read in Word.

· Your submission should include your last name first in the filename: Lastname_firstname_Stage _2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WEEK 3

 

1. Have completed all previously assigned readings, particularly those assigned in Weeks 3 and 4 of the class.

2. Re-read the “Haircuts Case Study” and the Stage 1 & 2 assignments, and review the “Walmart Example.”

3. Review Instructor feedback from previous assignment submissions.

Text box: purpose of this assignment this assignment gives you the opportunity to apply your knowledge of the course concepts to develop it requirements for a technology solution. this assignment specifically addresses the following course outcomes to enable you to: • analyze internal and external business processes to identify information systems requirements • identify and plan it solutions that meet business objectives

 

 

 

 

 

 

Overview of IT Requirements for a System to Improve the Process at Haircuts

For your Case Study Stage 1 assignment, you performed a Five Forces Analysis and justified Myra’s chosen strategy for competitive advantage andthe business processthat she would like to improve through the application of technology.

For your Stage 2 assignment, you identified the inputs, processing, and outputs of Myra’s selected business process.Those inputs, processing, and outputs form the functional (business) requirements for an IT system to improve the process.

In Stage 3, you will define the IT requirements by evaluating their applicability and importance in a new system to be implemented to improve the identified business process for Haircuts. The requirements that are identified as relevant to the business process will form the IT (technical) requirements for a system. In evaluating and selecting an IT system, both the functional (business) requirements and the IT requirements need to be considered. The areas that need to be considered in developing the IT requirements are listed below in the Table of IT Requirements. Depending on the specific process being improved and the data it uses, the areas listed will vary in both relevance and importance. For example, in a system to handle applications for Social Security, security and privacy are extremely important; but for a system to list what movies are being shown, privacy is not applicable at all. Your analysis must relate to the process Myra seeks to improve.

When both the functional (business) and technical (IT) requirements are identified, the system requirements are complete enough that you can then begin looking for a specific solution to meet the needs of Haircuts. Researching and finding an appropriate system to improve the process at Haircuts will be done in Stage 4.

Analysis of IT Requirements:

·IT Requirement: The areas to be considered are listed in the table. Be sure to research each term to ensure understanding as to whether and how it would apply to the Haircuts process being improved and the data it uses. A table of sources of the definitions of the requirements is provided below to assist you. Be sure you use a definition that applies to IT and this assignment, and not a generic definition of the term.

·Rankings: High/Medium/Low Importance or Relevance or Not Applicable (N/A):You will rank each requirement as to how important or relevant it is to the process being improved and the data it uses. Each will be ranked as High, Medium or Low, or Not Applicable to the process and its data.

·Explanation of Ranking: Using the definition of the term you researched and the ranking you selected, provide an explanation and tell how this requirement applies to the Haircuts process and the data it uses, or why it does not apply. All requirements must be ranked and a thorough explanation that demonstrates understanding of the topic must be provided. Please note that even N/A items require an explanation. A minimum of three good sentences should be used for each explanation.

The responses that you enter into the table for each requirement must be aligned to the specific business process to be improved and the data it uses, and must be appropriate to the Haircuts business. Be sure to consider the type of data (inputs and outputs – from Stage 2) that the system will handle as you determine the applicability and importance of each consideration. If a requirement is not relevant to the process, mark it “N/A.” Remember to provide a thorough explanation for every item under consideration, including those marked N/A.

Do not try to create a reason if there is none, but carefully analyze each requirement and determine whether it applies and how. Explanations must provide enough information to convey the reasoning behind the ranking and to demonstrate that you understand the requirement. DO NOTcopy definitions into the table; use your own words to explain the terms.

 

Example: If the process to be improved is the method for customers to use to pay for their haircuts or salon visits, then for the requirement of Usability, the following might be entered. Note the thorough explanation of the ranking that demonstrates an understanding of usability.

 

Requirement

 

High/Medium/Low Importance or Relevance or Not Applicable (N/A) Explanation for Ranking
Usability Medium Since the customers will use a system to make their payments, it must be easy to understand and easy to use. It would be inappropriate to require any training for customers. If it is too complicated, customers will not use it. In addition, front desk staff should be able to easily learn the system without extensive training. That is an entry level job with frequent turnover.so having a system that is intuitive and easy to navigate is critical. It is ranked “Medium” because it is important for any customer who chooses to use the system to be able to do so quickly, easily and intuitively; however, it is not “High” since there are other methods of paying.

 

 

 

Course Resources (for Weeks 1-5)

Where to find the definitions of IT Requirements

 

Usability The 7 Software “-ilities” You Need to Know(Week3)
Maintainability The 7 Software “-ilities” You Need to Know(Week 3)
Scalability The 7 Software “-ilities” You Need to Know(Week 3)
Reliability/Availability The 7 Software “-ilities” You Need to Know(Week 3)
Extensibility The 7 Software “-ilities” You Need to Know(Week 3)
Portability The 7 Software “-ilities” You Need to Know(Week 3)
Security The 7 Software “-ilities” You Need to Know(Week 3)
Data Accuracy DoD Guidelines on Data Quality Management,p. 3 (Week 4)
Data Completeness DoD Guidelines on Data Quality Management,p. 3 (Week 4)
Authentication Chapter 6(Week 4)
Enterprise Systems (ERP, CRM, SCM) Chapter 3(Week 3), various Week 5 readings
Networks Chapter 5 (Week 3)
Database Chapter 4 (Week 4)
Data Warehouse Chapter 4 (Week 4)
Data Mining Chapter 4 (Week 4)
Business Intelligence Chapter 4 (Week 4)
Decision Support System Chapter 7 (Week 1)
Business-to-Business eCommerce Various readings (Week 2)
Business-to-Consumer eCommerce Various readings (Week 2)

 

 

 

Assignment: Haircuts Stage 3: Create a document that includes:

I.Introduction

At the top of your paper, show the generic strategy for competitive advantage that Myra selected and the business process she has chosen to improve (see the Stage 1 assignment), using the following format:

 

Generic Strategy for Competitive Advantage: xxxxxxx (just name the strategy)

Business Process to Be Improved: xxxxxxxxx (just name the process)
II.Table of IT Requirements

· Copy the table below into your paper.

· Rank each requirement as High, Medium or Low in Importance/Relevance or Not Applicable (N/A) to a system to improve the process,

· Explain each ranking, as described in the table, including explanations for N/A.

· Definitions of the IT requirements are listed in Course Resources table above.

 

IT Requirement

 

Importance/
RelevanceHigh,
Medium,
Low, or

Not Applicable (N/A)

Explanation for Ranking

(Write a minimum of 3 good sentences for each; both the process to be improved and the case study should be mentioned in eachexplanation; the data used in the process should be included in the explanation where applicable.)

1 Usability
2 Maintainability
3 Scalability
4 Reliability/ Availability
5 Extensibility
6 Portability
7 Security
8 Data Accuracy
9 Data Completeness
10 Authentication
11 Enterprise Systems (ERP, CRM, SCM)
12 Networks
13 Database
14 Data Warehouse
15 Data Mining
16 Business Intelligence
17 Decision Support System
18 Business-to-Business eCommerce
19 Business-to-Consumer eCommerce

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Formatting:

 

For academic writing, the writer is expected to write in the third person. In third person, the writer avoids the pronouns I, we, my, and our. The third person is used to make the writing more objective by taking the individual, the “self,” out of the writing. This method is very helpful for academic writing, a form in which facts, not opinion, drive the tone of the text. Writing in the third person allows the writer to come across as unbiased and thus more informed.

 

· Submit one document that includes the Table of Requirements.

· Table entries should be single spaced.

· Use APA formatted citations and references for any external sources used.

· Include a title page, and a reference page if references are included.

· Compare your final work to the rubric to be sure you have met content and quality criteria.

· Submit your paper as a Word document, or a document that can be read in Word.

· Your submission should include your last name first in the filename: Lastname_firstname_Stage _3

 

WEEK 4

sure you:

1. Have completed all previously assigned readings, particularly those assigned in Weeks 3 and 4 of the class.

2. Re-read the “Haircuts Case Study” and the Stage 1, 2 & 3 assignments, and review the “Walmart Example.”

3. Text box: purpose of this assignment this assignment gives you the opportunity to apply the concepts of this course to address the selection, planning, development, implementation and on-going management of a technology solution for the haircuts business. this assignment specifically addresses the following course outcome to enable you to: • identify and plan it solutions that meet business objectives Review Instructor feedback from previous assignment submissions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Overview of IT Solution and Next Steps for Haircuts

For your Case Study Stage 1 assignment, you performed a Five Forces Analysis and justified Myra’s chosen generic strategy for competitive advantage andthe business process that she would like to improve through the application of technology.

For your Stage 2 assignment, you identified the inputs, processing, and outputs of Myra’s selected business process.Those inputs, processing, and outputs form thefunctional (business) requirements for an IT system to improve the process.

In Stage 3, you identified the IT requirements by evaluating their applicability and importance in a new system to be implemented to improve the identified business process for Haircuts.

Following your analysis of the business environment and the business and IT requirements, Myra Morningstar has decided to move ahead and implement an IT solution. She has asked you to identify an IT solution and explain what the steps would be to implement it.

Since Haircuts is a small business, Myra should take advantage of a Software as a Service (SaaS), or a cloud-based system, that has already been developed and is maintained and operated by a vendor. You should do some research and find a vendor-provided solution that will support the process that is being improved. Refer to the process model and your Stage 2 inputs, processing, and outputs that define the business requirements; and refer to your Stage 3 IT requirements as you select an appropriate solution. Consider the cost of the solution as you make your choice, so that your recommended solution will be affordable for Myra.

For this assignment, you will prepare a short paper explaining your proposed IT solution and the next steps in the implementation of that solution. The next steps will include everything that Myra needs to do, from getting a subscription to the software (or otherwise arranging to use it), to purchasing hardware, to preparing employees and implementing the system. The specific steps and how they are accomplished will be different for different system solutions.

Assignment: Haircuts Stage 4:Write a short paper that includes:

 

I. Introduction: Introduce what is to come in your paper, and include the generic strategy for competitive advantage and the business process to be improved.

 

II. Proposed IT Solution: Identifythe vendor and the system you selected to improve the process at Haircuts. Explain why you selected that system over others, including how it best meets the business requirements (see Stage 2) and IT requirements (see Stage 3) of Haircuts. Explain if/how cost was a factor in your selection.

 

III. Implementation Steps: Identify and explain the steps Myra will have to take to implement the system you have proposed. Include:

 

a. Vendor agreement – What does Myra need to do in order to be able to start using the system? How much will it cost to use the system?

b. Hardware and Telecommunications – What hardware will Myra need to install at Haircuts in order to implement the solutions? What kind of telecommunications will be needed for the solution, including local connectivity inside Haircuts and Internet access? How will she acquire the necessary hardware components and Internet access?

c. Configuration – What options does the vendor offer for configuring the system to Haircuts’ needs? How will the configuration be done, and by whom?

d. Testing – How will Myra test the system to see if it is working properly for her needs?

e. Employee preparation – What will Myra need to do to prepare her employees to use the new system?

f. Data Migration – How will the current employee work schedules be entered into the system to get started? How will the customer appointments that have already been made for future dates be entered?

g. System use – Who will use the system and for what purposes? When users have questions about how to use the system, how will they get answers?

h. Maintenance – Who will provide updates and corrections to the system?

 

IV. Conclusion: Close your paper with a brief summary of the entire project and what benefits Myra can expect to gain from it.

 

References: Incorporate at least oneexternal resource (NOTE: two or more external resources are required to receive all possible points) into your paper on an area of your choice. An external resource is a resource other than those provided in the class or textbook. Incorporate a properly formatted APA citation in the text of your document. Then, place an APA style list of references at the end of your paper.

 

Formatting:

 

· Write a short, concise paper, about 3-4 pages in length.

· Your paper should be double-spaced.

· For academic writing, the writer is expected to write in the third person. In third person, the writer avoids the pronouns I, we, my, and our. The third person is used to make the writing more objective by taking the individual, the “self,” out of the writing. This method is very helpful for academic writing, a form in which facts, not opinion, drive the tone of the text. Writing in the third person allows the writer to come across as unbiased and thus more informed.

· Use at least one external resource (two for full credit) with APA formatted citation and reference.

· Include a title page and a reference page.

· Compare your final work to the rubric to be sure you have met content and quality criteria.

· Submit your paper as a Word document, or a document that can be read in Word.

· Your submission should include your last name first in the filename: Lastname_firstname_Stage _4