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UMUC Haircuts Areas for IT Concentration Essay

In last few stages of our analysis and an IT solution was proposed of having a customer scheduling software used to help manage UMUC Haircuts customer schedule. The software that was looked at was BOOKFRESH scheduling software. This software would allow customers to dictate Myra’s schedule for her and allow for easy review via a computer used at work, home, or even on mobile platform devices. Although this adds another way of scheduling appointments, this removes a lot of unnecessary steps that were present before in the flow of the process. This streamlines the process and makes it harder for customers to be turned away from UMUC Haircuts since most will make their own appointments and the old ways are still present just refined. All-in-all this creates more revenue for UMUC Haircuts and adds little expense to the salon over all.

GENERIC STRATEGY: Narrow Market/High Cost

PROCESS TO BE IMPROVED: Customer Scheduling

UsabilityHighThe software must be easy use so that both the customer and operator can use it. If it is overly complicated then the system will be a hindrance rather than a useful tool. That is why I went with BOOKFRESH it is user friendly and comes with instructional videos for both operator and customer to watch. MaintainabilityLowMaintainability is low since most maintenance is done by the BOOKFRESH company. The only part of the solution that needs operator maintenance is the computer used to operate the software but user level will suffice for that. ScalabilityN/AScalability is not applicable since BOOKFRESH handles all require upgrades to the software so that it can handle more customers using the software. Everything scalable wise is done by BOOKFRESH. Reliability/ AvailabilityHighIn order for customers to use the software it must be available for use. Although this is another function handled by the software company it is still high since this is a required function in the new business process. ExtensibilityN/AAnother function that is handled by the software company.

This not applicable to the process improvement for UMUC Haircuts. PortabilityMediumSince this software is mobile and traditional type software this gives Myra the ability to handle her schedule from one machine to the next (Office PC to Home Tablet). Depending on the type of OS being used this requires for the software to be compatible on multiple systems. Luckily BOOKFRESH can be used as mobile or traditional software so this should not cause any issues. SecurityHighOne of the outstanding things about software is that customers can pay using credit card through the software. This requires for a secure login so that they know their information is protected. That part is done by BOOKFRESH they protect and backup all personal data. Why this is so high is that operators can go back into logs and look at transaction details. Since they can do this requires a degree of security and trust that must be instilled into the local operator of the software. All though this does not pertain to the purpose solution, it is still very necessary since customers will use this software to pay for services before they arrive at the salon. Data QualityHighThis is a very important to the usability of the software.

If the accuracy is off i.e. customer wants a shampoo but the stylist reads that they want a dye, then this will completely destroy business since no one will want to come to a salon that doesn’t even know what their clients want done to their hair. Authentication MediumSince this software requires a level of trust in individuals, it is important that the operator of the software has the appropriate credentials to use this software. You do not want someone who is willing to give their password so that someone else can access the information store on the cloud server. EncryptionHighIn order for information to not be taken off the computer while being sent via the internet and/or transmission path it is necessary for proper encryption. This makes the software even more secure and BOOKFRESH uses encryption to secure any and all transmissions of data. Cloud ComputingHighThis software relies on highly on cloud computing for storage of appointments and customers information. If the cloud goes down so does productivity of the salon. Enterprise Systems (ERP, CRM, SCM)MediumSince this software allows for multiple pieces of data to be transmitted and store, there is opportunity for an enterprise to arise from it. Since you can pay online using this software you can connect it directly to your bank or financial provider.

You can also connect it to your supply chain management by look at how many different services are requested and the amount of supplies that will need to be ordered. This however doesn’t affect the business process improvement since we are looking into the strategic area if customers. Communications HighEverything with this software is done via the internet. With no communication or networking aspect there is no solution. Database, Data Warehouse, Data MiningHighThis is the heart and soul of this software. Having a competent person setup to manage this database properly will be vitally important. This software will use a database to store all customer information, schedules, payments, and employee schedules. If this part fails the system fails. Business IntelligenceLowSince business intelligence does not directly affect the business process improvement this is set to low. Business intelligence though can pay an important part of this system. It can be used to find trends of what services are used the most, which stylist receives the most business and vice versa, how often supplies are used, and etc. This can improve her customer relationship as well by being able to offer coupons on services certain customers use the most and offering a loyalty to entice customers to continue business with them.

Transaction ProcessingMediumOnce again this not a part of the business process improvement but it will help with customers wanting to use the software to make appointments themselves. Since they can do a one stop schedule and pay this will be more convenient and less time consuming for the client. This will make them want to schedule their own appointments more often and create less work for the salon in the way of scheduling since the clients will have scheduled and paid already. Decision SupportMediumSince this business is driven on customers and the decisions they make it help make decisions for the salon. If customers are not scheduling certain services then a decision can be made to get rid of that service. If customers are requesting a service that is not always readily available then the decision to make it more available at certain times is made. Executive Information MediumCustomers know what they want and who they want it from. Using this information executive decision by Myra can be made. What stylist is requested the most, what service can be gotten rid of, what supplies are used the most, Is a new stylist needed to meet the demand of UMUC Haircuts services, Should UMUC Haircuts start spa services?

This information will help answer these questions. Business-to-Business eCommerceN/AThis software connects the client to the salon. There is no Business to Business e-Commerce. Business-to-Consumer eCommerceLowOne of the many unique features of this software is the ability to pay for your services online.

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