In this paper the writer will seek to respond to the questions designated for both scenarios. This paper will list typical fields for each type of data. Provide an example of two relationships that you need to track. This paper will also answer the questions of: Do you need a database system? If not, can Excel® handle the data and the output? What are the advantages and disadvantages? Would you use a personal database or an enterprise database? Explain your answer. Would a decision support system (DSS) be helpful? Explain your answer. When directing companies who work diligently with computer technology, it becomes increasingly imperative to have an adequate knowledge of the technology that is obtainable. This will allow those who have to manage information to make the most effective choice concerning what technology should be used for the company. In the two scenarios, making the best choices in technology allows the manager to best confer time and energy with superficially formidable responsibilities. For instance, in the first scenario, an marketing assistant of a consumer electronics company is asked to not only maintain the booths for various trade shows from beginning to end, but is also asked to ensure that there any issues that arise during the delivery of the products are resolved. First, it is important to realize what information should be maintained in order to best ensure that the tools that are used during the trade shows. In cases like these, it would be important to have a list that details what displays, equipment and booths are needed for specific trade shows, as well as when the displays, equipment, and booths should be shipped to the area and back. For example, if a trade show located in Tulsa, OK only needed one booth with one display in order to accommodate the space, it would be the job of the marketing assistant to ensure that the various parts made it to Tulsa, as well as ensure that the booth and display made it back to the office for future use; it would be necessary to know when it would be sent, as well as when it will be delivered back (which could be maintained with the knowledge of the delivering postal tracking number). In order to keep track of what is necessary for each trade show, there are several technological tools that would be instrumental in maintaining the information that will be transmitted.
While one could use an Excel to begin the process of tracking the information that is needed, it would not be the best method of collecting that type of information, and it could be overwhelming over time. A database, on the other hand, could handle the information that is contained, and would allow the marketing assistant to create reports later on that can be used to analyze what changes could be made in the future whether it is making earlier shipments in order to ensure that it reaches an area on time, etc. (Middleton, 2009). Since there would only be one person keeping track of the information, it would not be necessary to create an enterprise database, which would have the capabilities of being made available to other departments within the company (Web Definition, 2012). This would allow one person to maintain the pertinent information that other departments may need without having too many people managing information, which could lead to confusion regarding where equipment is or what is needed for certain trade shows. Also, in order to maintain the large amount of information that would come from managing various trade shows, it would be necessary for the marketing assistant to have a decision support system, which is a “computer system that is designed to provide assistance in determining and evaluating alternative courses of action” by “acquiring data from the mass of transactions of a firm,” by “analyzing it with advanced statistical techniques to extract meaningful information,” and by “narrowing down the range of choices by applying rules based on decision theory (Web Definition, 2012).” This will allow the marketing assistant to gain better knowledge of what could be improved upon for future trade shows. In the second scenario, technology has to be used in order to manage a consulting team of seven, some of whom work in an office and others who work from home. In this case, ensuring that there is equal accessibility to each employee is paramount to maintaining the business. A wide area network, or WAN, would help to accommodate the needs of employees who are working in the office as well as those who work from home. The WAN would create several LAN connections that would allow workers to the same access to important information regardless of where they are (John, 2009). Also, for projects
that more than likely will be time-sensitive, employees within the consulting team will have access to the printers and other equipment’s that is a part of the network, so that tasks are completed in a timely manner (John, 2009). While there are certain security risks with using WAN that includes the potential infiltration from people other than employees and the possible placement of viruses that would threaten the maintenance of information that is stored, the use of anti-virus programs and other programs would help to protect the computers and information that they have, and the benefit far outweigh the potential risks. Also, a wireless access would better assist the team in completing tasks in different areas.
Like WAN, wireless access would assist employees in gaining pertinent access to the information may normally be stored in in the office. For a consulting team who works in different areas, privacy and computer protection become a relevant problem that can be addressed with creating a virtual private network, or VPN. A VPN would ensure that the information that is held at the office for the team remains on a network that would only be accessible by the team, and it would prevent others who are not a part of the team from placing viruses on the computers or accessing the information, which could greatly hinder the completion of tasks and the accessibility of information. When considering what wireless networks should be used, cost as well as features must be considered. Excel documents often help to organize this information in order to assist leaders in making decisions regarding the best wireless network to purchase. For instance, if a wireless network is priced low but does not offer the speeds or other features necessary to operate for a company, the network would not be good to expend money on. However, it could be equally dangerous to expend a lot of money on a wireless network that has a lot of features that may or may not be used. As a result, this requires that a company list the various features that would be necessary for the functioning of the company. The company can then review the list of features that are included for wireless networks that they are considering, listing the price of each network. This allows them to find the wireless network that best meets their company’s needs without paying a lot of money for it. In conclusion, having a working understanding of the technology that is available to a company can help managers make wise and efficient choices regarding what tools should be used. In the first scenario, using databases in comparison to excel documents allows the marketing assistant to properly track equipment that is used on a daily basis, as well as track where it is being shipped to. In the second scenario, using WAN or wireless networks allow a team to maintain access to pertinent information that could help employee’s complete tasks in a timely manner regardless of their location. In these ways, technology assists companies in maintaining their business.
Decision Support System. (2012). “Decision support system.” Retrieved from: http://www.decisionsupportsystem.info/
Middleton H. (2009). “Maintaining a relational vs. flat file marketing database.” Retrieved from: http://www.dbmarketing.com/articles/Art223.htm
Charlene N. (2010). “Benefits of developing & maintaining a database.” Retrieved from: http://www.reviveprojects.com.au/blogs//2010/10/06/benefits-of-developing—maintaining-a-customer-database-
Web Definition. (2012). “Enterprise data.” Retrieved from: www.dataclaritycorp.com/cognos-glossary.html