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Need for Information Systems & Competitive Edge

It is believed that the competitive edge of leading retailers, such as Wal-Mart, expands beyond the technologies they use. A part of their success depends on the management strategies they employ.
- Do you agree with this statement? Why?
- What is the possibility of these companies maintaining their competitive edge forever? If they want to maintain it, what will they be required to do?
Analyze the situation under the current business plateau.
Information Systems for Small Scale Companies

Assume that you have established a small manufacturing unit to manufacture five distinct products in the electronics industry. The products are sold only over the Internet directly to the end users. The raw material is purchased from several vendors. You have employed a single digit team of employees to manage the operations of the organization.

Discussion Question:
? What type of information systems will be necessary and useful for your company?
? Ultimately, which information systems will you develop and deploy? Why?
? If you use all the required information systems in an appropriate manner, what will be the impact of your efforts on your business? (Please do not limit your answer to just financial outcomes.)

Solution Preview

It is believed that the competitive edge of leading retailers, such as Wal-Mart, expands beyond the technologies they use. A part of their success depends on the management strategies they employ.
- Do you agree with this statement? Why?

I do agree that big box retailers such as Wal-Mart enjoy successes that are heavily reliant upon technology but also they enjoy much success due to their management strategies. While Wal-Mart has an excellent Information Systems infrastructure that is capable of scanning products as fast as we see in the grocery stores, it is important to realize that many citizens shop at these retailers not due to the IT structure, but more based upon the huge variety of goods and the low prices that they advertise. While having adequate IT systems has a definite effect on the prices that they can offer by lower overhead, these stores gain a major advantage based on their purchasing power. Wal-Mart specifically is well known for its ability to get rock bottom pricing from its vendors due to their sheer size and number of stores.

- What is the possibility of these companies maintaining their competitive edge forever? If they want to maintain it, what will they be required to do?

Currently the US economy is staggering just a bit, and the business environment is tenuous. Big box retailers are struggling to attract and keep customers. As our society in general becomes tighter with their budgets, and spend less on leisure activities, the big box retailers enjoy the aspect of customers coming to their stores for not only luxury items but necessities. This makes the customer more likely to see ...

Solution Summary

Over 1000 words on whether information systems are needed and if it's possible for a company to retain the competitive edge indefinitely.

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