Human Resources/mis

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Question
3.   What are integrated software applications? Talk about their advantages and business utility. Write short notes on the business software solutions provided by:
a) SAP
b) PeopleSoft
c) Oracle
d) Microsoft
4.   What are the different phases of traditional system life cycle? In which phase of system life cycle the following are performed? Defining the problem, identifying its causes, specifying the solution, and identifying the information requirements.
5.   It is said,” Information and communication are most of the time complementary and sometimes supplementary to each other”. Elaborate!. What do you understand by competitiveness of ICT? Highlight the impact of ICT for the developing nations with respect to the economic activities.

please send me short answer.. i have to write the answersi within 4 pages..

Answer
What are integrated software applications? Talk about their advantages and business utility. Write notes on the business software solutions provided by:
a) SAP
b) PeopleSoft
c) Oracle
d) Microsoft
Integrated Packages
Integrated packages combine the abilities of several general-purpose applications in one program. Integrated software is an all-in-one application package that includes word processing, spreadsheet, database manager, graphics, and communications. An integrated package works together and shares information from one program with another.
Integrated packages were developed to solve the problems caused by the inability of individual programs to communicate and work with common files of data.
Some integrated packages require significant amounts of memory and may compromise on the speed, power, and flexibility of some of their functions to achieve integration. Powerful microcomputers available these days, however, allow users to accomplish all their works without sacrificing computers' speed and flexibility.
What happens if users want to take the data in one program and use it in another? Suppose users want to take information stored in the database manager and use it in a spreadsheet. This is not always possible with separate application packages, but it is with integrated software.
With an integrated package, users can use the database manager to pull together relevant facts. An example of such facts might be the annual membership fees for a sports club for different years. Users can then use the spreadsheet to compare these membership fees. Users can use the word processing program to write a memo about these membership fees for different categories of members. Users can use this program to merge into the memo totals from the spreadsheet. Finally, users can use the communications program to send the memo to another computer.
Some popular integrated packages are Works, First Choice, Symphony, Enable, Framework, SmartWare 11, Microsoft Office, and Perfect Office. End users who are just beginning to learn about application software find integrated packages quite helpful. These packages can easily exchange data between programs, and they share a common structure. These factors make them easy to learn and convenient to use.
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Integrated software is a single program that contains "modules" for many popular business applications such as word processing, spreadsheet, database management, graphics and communications. The user can easily switch from one type of application to another without exiting the program.
The advantages of integrated software are:
•   Low cost
•   Only one program to install and learn
•   Consistent interface from one module to another
•   The ability to share information between modules
•   Usually only one reference manual
•   Ideal for personal use or small business
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SAP stands for Systems Applications and Products in Data Processing.
SAP by definition is also name of the ERP (Enterprise Resource Planing) software as well the name of the company.
SAP system comprises of a number of fully integrated modules, which covers virtually every aspect of the business management.
SAP is #1 in the ERP market. As of 2010, SAP has more  than 140,000 installations worldwide, over 25 industry-specific business solutions and more than 75,000 customers in 120 countries
Other Competitive products in market are  Oracle, Microsoft Dynamics etc.
What is an SAP- ERP? Why it is Required?
Following Video will explain the need of an ERP software like SAP in an enterprise
Video Transcript with Key Takeaways Highlighted:
•   The very basic question is  why Enterprise Resource Planning also called ERP is required ?To answer this , lets examine this typical business scenario
•   Sales Team approaches the  Inventory department to check for availability of the product.
•   In case the product is out of stock ,the sales team approaches the Production Planning Department to manufacture the product.The Production planning Team checks with inventory department for availability of raw material
•   If raw material is not available with inventory , the Production Planning team buys the raw material from the Vendors then Production Planning forwards the raw materials to the Shop Floor Execution for actual production.
•   Once ready , the Shop Floor Team forwards the goods to the Sales Team , who in turn deliver it to the client. The Sales Team updates the Finance with revenue generated by sale of product
•   Production planning Team update the finance with payments to be made to different vendors for raw materials.All departments approach the HR for any Human Resource related issue.
•   That is a typical business process of in a manufacturing company
•   Some Key Inferences one could derive from the scenario would be.
•   A typical Enterprise has many Departments or Business Units.
•   These Departments or  Business Units continuously communicate and exchange date with each other.
•   The success of any organization lies in effective communication, and data exchange, within these departments ,as well as associated Third Party such as Vendors, Outsourcers ,and Customers.
•   Based on the manner in which communication and data exchanged is managed
•   Enterprise systems can be broadly classified as 1) Decentralized System. 2) Centralized System which are also called as ERP.
•   Lets look at Decentralized system first
•   In a company with Decentralized System of Data Management  – Data is maintained locally at the  individual departments; Departments do not have access to information or data of other Departments
•   To identify problems arising due to decentralized Enterprise management system lets look at the same business process again.
•   The Customer approaches the sales team for a product, but this time around he needs the product, on an urgent basis
•   The Sales Team do not have real-time information access to the products inventory.
•   So they approach the Inventory department to check the availability of the product.
•   This process takes time and customer chooses another vendor
•   Loss of Revenue and Customer Dissatisfaction.
•   Now , suppose the product is out of stock and the  Sales Team approaches the Production Planning team to manufacture the product for future use.
•   Production Planning Team checks the availability of the raw materials required.
•   Raw Material Information is separately stored by Production Planning as well as Inventory Department.
•   Thus Data  Maintenance Cost (in this case Raw Material) goes up.
•   A particular raw material required to manufacture the product is available in the inventory ,but as per the database of the production planning team, the raw material is out of stock.
•   So , they go ahead and buy the raw material. Thus, material as well inventory cost goes up.
•   Once the  raw material is available ,the shop floor department suddenly realize they are short of workers
•   They approach the HR , who in turn hire  temporary employees at higher than market rates. Thus LABOR Cost Increases.
•   The production planning department fail to update the finance department on the materials they have purchased.
•   The finance department defaults the payment deadline set by the vendor causing the company loss of its repute and even inventing a possible legal action.
•   This is just a few of many a problems with decentralized systems.
•   Some Major problems with the decentralized system are -
•   Numerous disparate information systems are developed individually over time  which are difficult to maintain
•   Integrating the data is time and money consuming
•   Inconsistencies and duplication of data
•   Lack of timely information leads to  customer dissatisfaction , loss of revenue and repute
•   High Inventory , material and human resource cost.
•   These are some major drawbacks for which we need a solution. Well the Solution  lies in Centralized Systems ie. ERP.
•   In a company ,with Centralized System of Information and Data Management 1) Data is maintained at a central location and is shared with various Departments. 2) Departments have access to information or data of other Departments.
•   Lets look at the same business process again to understand how a Centralized Enterprise System helps overcoming problems posed by a Decentralized Enterprise System
•   In this Case , all departments  update a Central Information System
•   When  Customer approaches  the sales team to buy a  product on an urgent basis
•   The Sales Team has real-time information access to the products in inventory which is updated by the  Inventory Department in the  Centralized System
•   Sales Team respond on time leading to Increased Revenue and Customer Delight
•   In case , manufacturing is required ,  the  Sales Team update the  Centralized Database .
•   Production Planning Department is auto updated by the Centralized Database for requirements. Production Planning Team checks the availability of the raw materials required  via Central Database which is updated by the Inventory Department
•   Thus Data Duplication is avoided and accurate data is made available
•   The Shop Floor Team update their Man Power Status regularly in the  Central Database which can be accessed by the HR department. In case of shortage of workforce
•   HR team starts recruitment process with considerable lead time to hire  a suitable candidate at market price .Thus labor cost goes down
•   Vendors can directly submit their invoices  to the Central Enterprise System which can be accessed by the Finance Department. Thus payments are made on time and possible legal actions are avoided
•   The key benefits of the centralized system are
•   It Eliminates the duplication, discontinuity and redundancy in data
•   Provides information across departments in real time.
•   Provides control over various business processes
•   Increases productivity, better inventory management , promotes quality ,reduced material cost , effective human resources management, reduced overheads  boosts profits
•   Better Customer Interaction , increased throughput. Improves Customer Service
•   Hence , a Centralized Enterprise Management System is required.
•   SAP is a Centralized Enterprise Management System also know as Enterprise Resource Planning.
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PeopleSoft, Inc. was a company that provided Human Resource Management Systems (HRMS), Financial Management Solutions (FMS), Supply Chain Management (SCM) and customer relationship management (CRM), Enterprise Performance Management software (EPM), as well as software solutions for manufacturing, enterprise performance management, and student administration to large corporations, governments, and organizations. It existed as an independent corporation until its acquisition by Oracle Corporation in 2005. The PeopleSoft name and product line are now marketed by Oracle.
PeopleSoft Financial Management Solutions (FMS) and Supply Chain Management (SCM) are part of the same package, commonly known as Financials and Supply Chain Management (FSCM).
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Oracle is an American multinational computer technology corporation headquartered in Redwood City, California, United States. The company specializes in developing and marketing computer hardware systems and enterprise software products – particularly its own brands of database management systems. Oracle is the third-largest software maker by revenue, after Microsoft and IBM.[3]
The company also builds tools for database development and systems of middle-tier software, enterprise resource planning software (ERP), customer relationship management software (CRM) and supply chain management (SCM) software.
Larry Ellison, a co-founder of Oracle, has served as Oracle's CEO throughout its history. He also served as the Chairman of the Board until his replacement by Jeffrey O. Henley in 2004. On August 22, 2008, the Associated Press ranked Ellison as the top-paid chief executive in the world.[4][5]
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Microsoft Corporation is an American multinational software corporation headquartered in Redmond, Washington that develops, manufactures, licenses, and supports a wide range of products and services related to computing. The company was founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen on April 4, 1975. Microsoft is the world's largest software maker measured by revenues.[4] It is also one of the world's most valuable companies.[5]
Microsoft was established to develop and sell BASIC interpreters for the Altair 8800. It rose to dominate the personal computer operating system market with MS-DOS in the mid-1980s, followed by the Microsoft Windows line of operating systems. The company's 1986 initial public offering, and subsequent rise in its share price, created an estimated three billionaires and 12,000 millionaires from Microsoft employees. Since the 1990s, it has increasingly diversified from the operating system market and has made a number of corporate acquisitions. In May 2011, Microsoft acquired Skype Technologies for $8.5 billion in its largest acquisition to date.[6]
As of 2013, Microsoft is market dominant in both the PC operating system and office suite markets (the latter with Microsoft Office). The company also produces a wide range of other software for desktops and servers, and is active in areas including internet search (with Bing), the video game industry (with the Xbox and Xbox 360 consoles, and the upcoming Xbox One console), the digital services market (through MSN), and mobile phones (via the Windows Phone OS). In June 2012, Microsoft announced that it would be entering the PC vendor market for the first time, with the launch of the Microsoft Surface tablet computer.
In the 1990s, critics began to contend that Microsoft used monopolistic business practices and anti-competitive strategies including refusal to deal and tying, put unreasonable restrictions in the use of its software, and used misrepresentative marketing tactics; both the U.S. Department of Justice and European Commission found the company in violation of antitrust laws




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4]What are the different phases of traditional system life cycle? In which phase of system life cycle the following are performed? Defining the problem, identifying its causes, specifying the solution, and identifying the information requirements.
concept of Systems Life-Cycle.

The system lifecycle in systems engineering is an examination of a system or proposed system that addresses all phases of its existence to include system design and development, production and/or construction, distribution, operation, maintenance and support, retirement, phase-out and disposal.
Cradle-to-grave journey of a system, comprising of broad phases such as conception, definition, design, testing, implementation, maintenance, modification or upgrading, and retirement or replacement.
Phases of the Traditional Systems Development Life Cycle
Phases of the traditional Systems Development Life Cycle (SLDC) for Bank ATM Software
The Six Phases  “There are six different phases in a traditional systems development life cycle. The first phase is preliminary investigation, the second phase is system study, the third phase is system analysis, the fourth phase is programming and implementation, the fifth phase is support and maintenance, and the sixth phase is documentation”.
“Stages of the traditional system development lifecycle can be characterized and divided up in different ways, including the following:
Project planning, feasibility study: Establishes a high-level view of the intended project and determines its goals.
Systems analysis, requirements definition: Refines project goals into defined functions and operation of the intended application. Analyzes end-user information needs.
Systems design: Describes desired features and operations in detail, including screen layouts, business rules, process diagrams, pseudo code and other documentation.
Implementation: The real code is written here. Integration and testing: Brings all the pieces together into a special testing environment, then checks for errors, bugs and interoperability.
Acceptance, installation, deployment: The final stage of initial development, where the software is put into production and runs actual business.
Maintenance: What happens during the rest of the software's life: changes, correction, additions, moves to a different computing platform and more. This, the least glamorous and perhaps most important step of all, goes on seemingly forever.” ” (2002)
Phase 1 - Preliminary Investigation
A need to develop software to run a bank’s ATM can be considered input to the first phase of preliminary investigation. At this phase, the project is planned according to the requirements of the system. According to Computer World, “Project planning, feasibility study: Establishes a high-level view of the intended project and determines its goals.” (2002).
Phase 2 - System Study
Coming out of the preliminary investigation phase is input to the system study phase. In this phase a feasibility study is done to see if the project is possible
According to Computer World, “Project planning, feasibility study: Establishes a high-level view of the intended project and determines its goals.” (2002).
Phase 3 - System Analysis
Output from the system study is input to the system analysis phase. According to Computer World, “Project planning, feasibility study: Establishes a high-level view of the intended project and determines its goals.” (2002). According to Computer World, “Systems analysis, requirements definition: Refines project goals into defined functions and operation of the intended application. Analyzes end-user information needs.” (2002).
Phase 4 - Programming and Implementation
Output from the system analysis phase is input to the programming and implementation phase. According to Computer World, “Implementation: The real code is written here. Integration and testing: Brings all the pieces together into a special testing environment, then checks for errors, bugs and interoperability.” (2002).
Phase 5 - Support and Maintenance
Output from the programming and implementation phase is input to the support and maintenance phase. According to Computer World, Maintenance: What happens during the rest of the software's life: changes, correction, additions, moves to a different computing platform and more. This, the least glamorous and perhaps most important step of all, goes on seemingly forever.” (2002). Support will be supplied by the agreed upon personnel/contractors.
Phase 6 – Documentation
Output from the support and maintenance phase is input to the documentation phase. This is the phase where documentation is developed to support the software written to run the ATM.

















         Stage 1 & F          Feasibility










         Stage 1 &          
         2


         Stages 2, 3,
         4 and 5





         Stage 6




















































Information systems planning
Investing in strategic planning for the development of future and existing information systems.  Many methods have been put forward and take a variety of approaches but generally the result from the planning exercise will be an analysis of the organisations present position, recommendations as to which systems should be developed or enhanced, a plan showing the order in which these projects should be done and outline project plans and terms of reference for each project.

Project Initiation
The phase where the project is set up, terms of reference agreed, team members assigned and plans drawn up.

Feasibility study
Phase where it is decided if the project is technically possible, if it can be financially and socially justified and whether the new system will be accepted by the organisation.  

System analysis
Current system is analysed in great detail to determine the requirements for a new system.  

Business systems design
The requirements for the new system will have been broadly specified in the previous phase.  In this phase various technical solutions that meet the requirements are evaluated and one is selected.  A detailed logical design of the new system is developed showing in a clear non-technical way how the new system will operate within the business.

Physical design
The logical design is converted into a design that fits the computer hardware and software selected.  Physical design involves the specification of files, the specification of programs and the detailed operating and manual procedures that support them.  

Construction
This concerns the programming, the assembly of the programs into a system and the testing of the system.  

Transition
This phase involves the transition from operating the old system to operating the new.  It involved the installation of equipment, the conversion of old system data to the formats required by the new system and the training of users.  Some systems life cycles join the construction and transition phase together to form an implementation phase.

Production
This phase begins when the system has been completely handed over to the users.  The term production conveys that the system is operating and producing the information that was required of it.

Maintenance and review
Throughout the production phase the system will require maintenance in various ways,
  Correction of entries
  Adaptation to new software and hardware releases
  Minor enhancements
The system will have to be reviewed to show how well it has met the requirements and objectives set for it and whether it continues to meet the users requirements.  These enhancements and reviews may lead to further system studies.
  
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5]It is said,” Information and communication are most of the time complementary and sometimes supplementary to each other”. Elaborate!. What do you understand by competitiveness of ICT? Highlight the impact of ICT for the developing nations with respect to the economic activities.


1.INFORMATION   AND   COMMUNICATION   ARE   COMPLEMENTARY,
BECAUSE  IT   SERVES   TO  COMPLETE   THE  TASK.

IF   WE  TAKE  THE  STRATEGIC  PLANNI
NG  PROCESS,
AND  SEE  HOW  THE   INFORMATION   SUPPLEMENTS  THE
COMMUNICATION   AND  ENABLES  TO  COMPLETE  THE  TASK.


. Key elements of the strategic planning process.

1. External Assessment  [communication ]

Areas for opportunities and threats  [information ]

* Markets [ what  is  the market  situation, which is forcing the change requirements
*Customers [ how can service the customer -internal / external -better .          
* Industry  [ is  the  industry  trend ]
* Competition [ is  it the  competitive situation      
*Factors of  business [ causing  the change]
* Technology [ is  it  technology  change ]

2. Internal Assessment  [ communication ]

Areas  for strengths, weaknesses, and barriers to success [ information ]

ORGANIZATION DIMENSIONS [ communication]

[INFORMATION]
*Culture  [ is the  working  culture  change ]
* Organization [  is the  organization  demanding  change ]
* Systems  [ is it  the  systems change ]
* Management practices  [ change in  managemement process]


OTHER KEY DIMENSIONS [ COMMUNICATION]

[INFORMATION ]

*Cost efficiency[  is it for  cost efficiency ]
* Financial  performance  [ is  it for  financial  performance improvement ]
* Quality [ is  it for  quality  performance improvement
*Service [ is  it for  service   performance improvement
*Technology[ is  it for  technology   performance improvement
* Market segments [ is  it for  sales  performance improvement
* Innovation[ is  it for    performance improvement
*new products[ is  it for new product   performance improvement
*Asset condition[ is  it for  financial  performance improvement
*productivity[ is  it for  financial  performance improvement

3. Source  Strategic  objectives  and  programs  [COMMUNICATION]

The critical issues that must be addressed if the organization
Is  to  succeed

[ INFORMATION ]

Strengths
Weaknesses
 Opportunities
 Threat

PRIORITY   ISSUES [  COMMUNICATION ]

FROM  THE  ABOVE , DETERMINE   THE  CORE  ISSUES
WHICH  NEEDS  TO  SOLVED  WITH  YOUR  INVESTMENT.

STRATEGIC  PROGRAMS  [  COMMUNICATION ]

FROM  THE  ABOVE  CORE  ISSUES , DETERMINE  YOUR
STRATEGIC  PROGRAMS.

=================================================
FROM   HERE  ON,   THE  COMMUNICATION  IS  SUPPORTED
BY  ''COMPLEMENTARY''  INFORMATION.  


Mission  STATEMENT [ COMMUNICATION ]

VISION    STATEMENT  [  COMMUNICATION ]

 Your CORE  PURPOSE  [  COMMUNICATION ]

  Your   CORE   OBJECTIVES  [ INFORMATION ]
  Your   Core markets;          [INFORMATION ]
 Your  CORE  strategic thrusts. [INFORMATION ]

BUSINESS DEFINITION:

The arena of products, services, customers, technologies, distribution methods, and geography in which you'll compete to get results.

 VALUES: [ COMMUNICATION ]
 Desired attitudes and behavior toward internal and external stakeholders that
will yield the culture and business results you want and that you will execute and turn into
action through

[ INFORMATION ]
-policy,
-programs,
-processes,
-procedures,
-personnel selection.

¬

levels and tiers of strategies

OVERALL FINANCIAL POSTURE  [ COMMUNICATION ]

[ INFORMATION ]
Grow; hold; milk; get out

PRIORITIES AND POSTURES [ COMMUNICATION]

[INFORMATION ]
(Grow; hold; milk)
Market; business unit; product/services


Internal development  [ COMMUNICATION]
[ INFORMATION]
Divest
Restructure

COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE
Cost /Value/ differentiation


EXTERNAL STRATEGIES  [ COMMUNICATION ]

[ INFORMATION ]

Product      Convenience
Service      Image
Target customer      Geography
Distribution      Product design
Delivery      Quality
Value      Reliability
Pricing      Advertising/promotion

INTERNAL STRATEGIES [ COMMUNICATION ]

[ INFORMATION ]

People/skills / Facilities
Organizational /   Product
structure    /         development
Management style   /Incentives/rewards
Training      Spending
Equipment      Sourcing/
         manufacturing
technology          /    Systems
R&D          /   Service
FINANCING        /  Quality
  




Strategy Statement Content  [ COMMUNICATION ]

[ INFORMATION ]

v Priorities and Posture
 Business unit
 Market
 Product
 Strategic thrust/competitive advantage
 External strategies
 Internal strategic thrust
 Internal strategies
 Strategic fixes

8. Strategic Program Content  [ COMMUNICATION ]

[ INFORMATION ]

LEADERSHIP: who

OBJECTIVES

KEY STEPS: who, what, when

FINANCIAL AND STRATEGIC
GAIN AND COST

PEOPLE: numbers and skills

COORDINATION REQUIREMENTS:

People and organizational units outside your control who must contribute

LEVERAGE: the high leverage individuals and units who must contribute at lower levels

Strategic
Accountability~/Reviews

QUARTERLY: Programs and strategic numbers' progress

INDIVIDUAL OBJECTIVES:
Performance appraisal

REWARDS AND CONSEQUENCES: Based on strategic performance of teams and individuals

INFORMAL VIGILANCE

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX   
What do you understand by competitiveness of ICT? Highlight the impact of ICT for the developing nations with respect to the economic activities

Given the enormous changes taking place in the world trading system and the accompanying to
become internationally competitive, it is important for firms  in developing and transition economies and the nation to make a quantum jump of the transition from being comparative cost advantage to be competitive advantage in the world market. In parallel to this development, the
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) is drastically reshaping our life, especially the
business and the international trade practices by improving the speed, the productivity, and the
quality of business environment. In fact the innovation and development of ICT is a major factor of
the international competition in the New Economy, and in turn ICT is also a powerful tool, a must
for us, of this transition to be competitive advantage. It is very important for both the nation and the
firms to develop and align the collaborative strategies among themselves on how to use ICT to
build the collective competitiveness, as a whole. Our goal in this paper is to develop ICT strategies
for competitiveness development.

the keys areas of consideration for the competitiveness development. His model is
very well accepted around the world, and national strategists and business executives in many
economies are using it. This paper is trying to move forward one more step by applying the
Porter’s competitiveness framework to address on the use of ICT in building the competitiveness
advantage. We focus on the challenge and opportunities for the developing and transition
economies in mapping effective strategies at both national level and the aligned individual firm
level in accord to Porter’s framework.

Changing World
In the new economy, the emerging information age, it is recognized that Information and
Communication Technology (ICT) is shaping up our society, effecting changes from individuals to
the national level and the regional level. Many the world trends and new mega management
concepts, namely Globalisation, Learning Society, Knowledge-based Economy, and Collaborative
Value Chain Management, in fact are developed and become reality through the invent and
implementation of ICT (fig. 1).
ICT roles in New Economy
Globalization
Learning Society
Knowledge Based
Economy
E-Learning
Educational Portal
SCM
Collaborative Solutions
E-Commerce
E-Government
CRM
Knowledge
Service Provider,
Data Warehouse
Cluster Development & ICT
Value Chain Management

The role of ICT in New Economy

The advance of the ICT causes local firms in developing and transition economies to face more competitions and the competitive advantages that any firm now processes will become smaller and
less durable. It is important that the local firms must learn and begin to implement ICT as part of their regular business practice in order to becoming globally competitive and actively pursue the new business opportunities. The government also must establish ICT infrastructure, ICT
regulations, and supports to facilitate and encourage local firms to make a move into this transition,
i.e., to invest in ICT, employ skilled ICT people, upgrade for new ICT technology and become globally competitive. Given the dynamics and complexities of today’s international market, both
the national strategy and the firm strategy in term of using ICT to develop the competitiveness should be aligned to each other. Therefore some kind of standard framework for this alignment
must be established and developed so that both the government and individual firm will forward in the same direction and will be automatically adaptive to each other. Porter’s model on competitiveness development is found to be a very effective one and his model is applied in many
business applications and environments, thus in this paper we choose Porter’s model as a
framework in developing the use of ICT in competitiveness development.

Porter’s Competitiveness Framework
In order to be successful in driving the competitiveness of the whole system, not sub
optimal, it is necessary to align both the national strategy and the individual firm strategy in such as
way that both are moving along the same directions, but definitely at the different scopes or levels,
i.e., at macroeconomic and microeconomic levels. Also both of them should be adaptive in coping
with the dynamistic of the business environment. Therefore we are interested in a kind of a
competitiveness development model or framework that is simple, understandable, applicable, and
acceptable and can be standardized to strategy makers at both the national level and firm level so
that all individual subsystems at firm levels will be automatically optimised in along with the direction of the national system, and vice versa. Porter explains the aggregated influences on
competitiveness as a relationship and the interaction of the strategy at the national level and the firm level that due to the competition in the world economy a nation must response to this change
by developing national competitiveness strategy (macroeconomic), as a result the government is promoting and facilitating the development of competitive environment to local business and
industry and causing local firms to response with competitively driven strategy . The close
relationship between the success of national strategy at the macroeconomic level and the success
of individual firm strategy at the microeconomic level is illustrated in Fig. 3.
Aggregated Influences on
Compettiittiivveenneessss
World Economy
Broad Economic
Areas
Industries
Firms
Nations
Wo

Aggregated Influences on Competitiveness (from National level to Firm level)
Interactions of Public and Private Sectors
The Interaction of Competitiveness Response between Government and Firms
In order to avoiding the sub optimal situation, it is advisable to define a kind of standard framework
using for all participants related in competitiveness development, so that individual strategy can be
aligned and adjusted in the most appropriate way to optimise the total system. For this reason,
Porter’s model is found to be a very simple, clear and effective framework for analysis and
developing the competitiveness strategy for both at national level and firm level. Michael Porter
explains that in developing the competitiveness strategy, there are four driving factors we have to
consider, namely,
1. Factor (supply) conditions; it includes the consideration of fundamental factors as
natural resource, geography; capital and factors which include knowledge and skill of
people, and infrastructure.
2. Context for firm strategy and rivalry; it considers the conditions and rules of business
and government (international and local) regulations/promotion, especially the ones that
relate to productivity and competitive advantage improvement.
3. Related and supporting industries; it is the understanding the structure of the
industry, knowing how each business entity works together with others in the industries
including the ones from downstream, midstream, upstream, and supporting industries.
4. Demand conditions; particularly it is the understanding of the customers demand, and
how to respond to satisfy the customer needs.
ICT for Competitiveness Development Strategies
In apply Porter’s framework as a common basis for the ICT competitiveness development for both
the national and firm levels, bared in mind that in this analysis we realize that there are plenty of
nice things to do and there are so many detailed elements to be considered depending on the situation of different economies, however we will try to capitalize the mega concepts or the latest
world trends in the new economy and try to incorporate them into our development.
At the national level, the government must take an initiative to lead in the use of ICT and providing ICT infrastructure to build competitiveness to response to the new global competition. Following
the four factors as stated in Porter’s framework, the government must response by developing the
ICT national strategy to build competitiveness in accord to the world trends in the new economy as
follows
Goal: To use ICT to build competitiveness of the nation.
1. Factor (supply) conditions: The government has to develop the long term ICT strategy to
supply quality resources to industries and firms.
World trend (National driver): Learning society
National ICT response (National strategy): e-National Educational System to use ICT to
improve the quality of education system, providing continuous and long life learning
services to students and public.
2. Context for firm strategy and rivalry: The government has to develop the long term ICT
strategy to provide competitive business environment to industries and firms.
World trend (National driver): Knowledge based Economy
National ICT response (National strategy): e-Government
3. Related and supporting industries: The government has to develop the long term ICT
strategy to promote and upgrade the collaboration among related industries and firms.
World trend (National driver): Cluster Development
National ICT response (National strategy): e-Collaborative Platform (Virtual Cluster
Development)
4. Demand conditions: The government has to develop the long term ICT strategy to
understand and effectively response to the world demand and the needs of industries and
firms.
World trend (National driver): Globalisation
National ICT response (National strategy): e-Commerce Promotion
National level
Context for
Firm
Strategy
and Rivalry
Context for
Firm
Strategy
and Rivalry
Related and
Supporting
Industries
Related and
Supporting
Industries
Factor
(Input)
Conditions
Factor
(Input)
Conditions
Demand
Conditions
Demand
Conditions
Driver: Learning Society
Response: e-Educational Network
& Infrastructure
Readiness
Driver: Knowledge Based
Economy
Response: e-Government
Driver: Globalization
Response: e-Commerce
Driver: Cluster Development
Response: e-Collaborative Platform
ICT national strategy to build competitiveness
At the firm level, the industry must provide input to the government and firms must try to
capitalize the government policy and resources to develop theirs own competencies, and to be
self-productivity improvement. Following the four factors as stated in Porter’s framework, the
individual firm must response by developing the ICT strategy to build competitiveness at firm level
in accord to the industry and business environment as follows (Fig. 5):
Goal: To use ICT to build competitiveness of firms.
1. Factor (supply) conditions: The firm has to develop short or intermediate term ICT
strategy to provide sufficient infrastructure and technology to maintain and sustain effective
basic ICT operation.
Business driver: Sustainability
Firm response (Firm ICT strategy): ICT Innovation and Capability Upgrading
2. Context for firm strategy and rivalry: The firm has to develop short or intermediate term
ICT strategy to implement ICT applications for the firm productivity improvement.
Business driver: Operational Excellence
Firm response (Firm ICT strategy): ICT Implementation for Productivity Improvement
(MRP, ERP, Benchmarking, TQM, Web-Services Solutions).
3. Related and supporting industries: The firm has to develop short or intermediate term
ICT strategy to collaborate with other forms in the industry to drive for lower production
cost, lower inventory, fast delivery, and improving quality.
Business driver: Business Networking and Partnership
Firm response (Firm ICT strategy): Supply/Value Chain Implementation
(SCM/VCM)
4. Demand conditions: The firm has to develop short or intermediate term ICT strategy to
understand customers demand and to be able to response quickly to the world market.
Business driver: Customer Intimacy
7
Firm response (Firm ICT strategy): Customer Relationship Management (CRM), including
telemarketing, customer call center, business information and customer analysis
e- Strategy in align with Porter’s Competitiveness Framework
at Firm level
Context for
Firm
Strategy
and Rivalry
Context for
Firm
Strategy
and Rivalry
Related and
Supporting
Industries
Related and
Supporting
Industries
Factor
(Input)
Conditions
Factor
(Input)
Conditions
Demand
Conditions
Demand
Conditions
Driver: Sustainability
Response: ICT Technology
& Innovation
Driver: Networking & Partnership
Response: Supply Chain Management
(SCM)
Driver: Operational Excellence
Response: Productivity Improvement
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)
Driver: Customer Intimacy
Response: Customer Relationship
In an effort to mapping the interrelationship between national and firm levels strategies
together into a unified platform, fig. 6 presents the matrix of the alignment of collective
competitiveness strategies. The graphical representation of the interaction and alignment of the
collective competitiveness strategy integrating both national and firm levels is presented in fig. 7.
Matrix of E
Matrix of E-Strategies for
Competitiveness Development
Firm
Strategy
National
Strategy
World
Trends
Porter’s
Competitiveness
Framework
Business
Drivers
e-Collaborative
Platform
Operational
Excellence
Knowledge Base
Economy
Globalization
Cluster
Development
Customer
Relationship
Management
(CRM)
Supply Chain
Management
(SCM)
Learning Society
ICT
Technology &
Innovation
e-Educational
Network &
Infrastructure
Readiness
Factor/Supply
Condition
Structures of
Firm and Rivalry
Related and
Supporting
Industries
Demand
Conditions
e-Government e-Commerce
Productivity
Improvement
Enterprise Resource
Planning (ERP)
Customer
Intimacy
Networking &
Partnership
Sustainability
Fig. 6: The matrix of the alignment of collective competitiveness strategies integrating both
national and firm levels.
Collaborative Competitiveness
Development
Learning Society &
Sustainability
Cluster Development
& Networking
Knowledge Based Economy
& Operational Excellence
Globalization &
Customer Intimacy
Internal Focus External Focus
Structure of Firm
and Rivalry
Factor/Supply
Conditions
Demand
Condition
Related and
Supporting Industries
Fig. 7: The graphical representation of the interaction and alignment of the collective
competitiveness strategy
SWOT Analysis and ICT Implementation Action Plan for
Competitiveness Development
In order to defining effective ICT national action plan, a summary of SWOT analysis and the
related national action plans of a typical developing economy with respect to the developed
national strategies (in accord to Porter’s model) are presented here as follow:
•  National Strategy (Factor /Input Condition): e-National Educational System
SWOT Analysis:
Strength: Good leader’s vision and initiative in education reform.
Weakness: Most of the people have limited knowledge and less assessment to computer
services (Digital Divide).
Opportunity: Use ICT as powerful tool to improve quality of learning system (learner centric
model).
Threat: No control of Internet materials, making it easy to access bad materials in Internet
Action Plan:
1. To provide sufficient computers and infrastructure to all schools, libraries, museums to
be on line learning centers.
2. To promote the use of computer & Internet, especially teaching to parents and
teachers.
3. To provide on line education and learning services.
4. To provide solutions for teachers to develop local educational contents.
5. To assure the quality of educational contents and to screen out the bad ones out.
9
•  National Strategy (Context for Firm Strategy and Rivalry): e-Government
SWOT Analysis:
Strength: Government reform, new thinking to improve government services
Weakness: Government bureaucratic, having limited budget
Opportunity: Using ICT to improve the government services in term of productivity and
efficiency.
Threat: Competition among developed economies, having to play catch up on using of ICT
to facilitate trading services.
Action Plan:
1. To simplify government bureaucratic processes and to streamline government services
to be one stop service center.
2. To integrate and link government data base and back office systems together.
3. To provide e-government services on line to facilitate trades and public services.
4. To train government officers on using computer and e-government service systems.
•  National Strategy (Related and Supporting Industries): e-Collaborative Platform &
Virtual Cluster Development
SWOT Analysis:
Strength: Significant number of local SME’s located within the economy
Weakness: Distrust and competition among local business community
Opportunity: Aggregated competitiveness and productivity of SME through the concept of
Cluster Development
Threat: World competition is getting tighter, under the development of WTO free trade
regulation.
Action Plan:
1. To promote or organize the partnership of related business entities into industry clusters
2. To define common standards and practices.
3. To promote collaborative business or supply chain activities among industry
associations or federations.
4. To develop virtual cluster platform, i.e., integration of business community, collaborative
solutions, and e-services together.
•  National Strategy (Demand conditions): e-Commerce Promotion
SWOT Analysis:
Strength: Varieties of products and services available to serve the increasing world demand
Weakness: Local business people are lack of computer and ICT knowledge
Opportunity: Potential e-commerce opportunity for new marketing channel to understand
customer needs and demands.
Threat: World competition, limited e-trade services and security
Action Plan:
1. To promote SME and local business people on using computer, Internet and ecommerce.
2. To promote on line business and trading services such as e-payment, e-logistic, etc.
3. To establish necessary laws and legal regulations for electronic transactions controls
and protections.
4. To promote portals or aggregations of local SME and business entities
5. To provide global business information and services to local SME.
For the development of action plan for the firm, it will depend on the business environment and the
condition of individual firm case by case of which is beyond the scope of this study. However
some general guidelines and management methodology for the firm action plan development are
suggested in the fig. 8.
10
ICT Response to Competitiveness
Development at Firm Level
Available technology and solutions: R&D Network,
Communication technology, VOP.
Available technology and solutions: On line
Benchmarking, ERP, Accounting, HR, Inventory, MRP,
Scheduling modules, ASP Productivity Services.
Available technology and solutions: SCM, Collaborative
e-commerce, Web-based Activities Monitoring System
Available technology and solutions: CRM, Call Center,
Telemarketing, Customer Data Warehouse
Driver: Sustainability
Response: ICT Technology
& Innovation
Driver: Operational Excellence
Response: Productivity Improvement
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)
Driver: Networking & Partnership
Response: Supply Chain Management
(SCM)
Driver: Customer Intimacy
Response: Customer Relationship
Management (CRM)
guidelines at firm level
The analysis in this study is certainly not exhaustive, and it may not applicable to all developing
and transition economies. However it covers a few of the more important issues of how the
national strategy and be aligned to the firm strategy and vice versa by using a standard
competitiveness driving platform, namely Porter’s framework, and this study can be useful to
provide guideline for other future detailed analysis and developments
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human resource management, human resource planning, strategic planning in resource, management development, training, business coaching, management training, coaching, counseling, recruitment, selection, performance management.

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18 years of managerial working exercise which covers business planning , strategic planning, marketing, sales management,
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