IT 210 Milestone One

IT 210 Milestone One

IT-210 Bus Systems Analysis/Design

Southern New Hampshire University

Introduction.

The business selected in the case scenario is a small brick and mortar company that specializes in designer clothing, shoes, and handbags. They also offer discounted designer clothing and accessories for both men and women. Currently there are five store employees, two full-time and three part-time employees. The store uses a basic website with a list of a few products to promote and sell its inventory. However, customers can only purchase items in-store. This in turn has created a problem because the business is not able to reach customers as easily as its competitors can. These competitors consist of Bluefly, Zappos, Kohl’s, Macy’s, HauteLook, Nordstrom Rack and Lyst. The primary goal of the business is to promote growth with an increased online presence with a more customer-focused. In addition, streamlining the business processes along with integrating the brick-and-mortar business with an e-business aspect, is also a goal to improve customer service. The two systems I have chosen to analyze are Business analytics and business intelligence solutions and Social Computing. Business intelligence and analytics tools are the most broadly implemented data management solutions. They both collect analyze and visualize data, offer suggestions to optimize data collected, and presents and organizes the data for presentation. However, only business intelligence can create summarized reports of historical data and use diagnostic analytics to determine the source of mitigating issues. Business analytics on the other hand can make predictions based on collected data and offer solutions based on issues found during data collection. Basically, business intelligence systems are used to maintain and optimize current operations, with an effort to streamline the business. While business analytics are used to gather and analyze data, create predictions, and generate ornately envisioned reports (Adair, B. 2018). Moving on to Social Computing, which is a form of IT that includes social behavior and information systems to generate value. Social computing is engrossed into refining a partnership and collaboration among people and focused on user-generated content. When social computing is sourced, the users, not organizations, manage and produce its content through cooperative communications and collaboration. This results in the transforming relationships within organizations between employees and customers (WileyPlus, 2019).

Business Requirements.

Currently, the physical location struggles with managing customer information and does not have a reporting tool to help management make informed decisions. The objectives are to streamline the business operations, which will allow the business to connect with its customers, allowing them to expediently purchase items both online and in the store. In addition, products will be easily promotable, and customers will be able to conveniently view inventory. In order to accomplish and overcome issues that has subjected the business to become less competitive the owner will be looking for new technology solutions. These solutions will support the business goals by integrate online shopping, manage inventory and shipping, providing order status and online payment processing, facilitating collaboration internally and externally, manage customer contacts, provide reporting and use the new technology to manage the current brick-and-mortar processes, i.e. sales, payments, inventory, and customer contact. To satisfy these objectives the business must implement new technology and train its employees on the changes that will be made. The business must also identify what its competitors are doing differently and how they retain their customer base. The desired results are to increase sales and reach more of its target market. This is all very important because it allows the business to stay competitive and give consumers a convenient alternative. This will all be done by implementing key technological requirements. First, the integration of online shopping will bring the business into todays purchasing environment and provide a system that checks the status of the online purchases. Lastly, create a system that can manage the current brick and mortar processes that improves the sales, payments, inventory and customer contacts.

Competitors and Technology.

The first competing company is Kohls. Kohls is a department store that sells both moderately priced private and national name brand clothing, footwear and accessories. In addition, the company also sells beauty and home products. According the Company’s Website, much of its merchandise that is available in its stores, is also available online (Reuters, 2019). Four separate technologies highlights Kohl’s strategy of investment for the future of its company. These four crucial initiatives ate the Cloud, artificial intelligence, automation and mobile. First and foremost, artificial intelligence is helping Kohl’s to work in a faster, smarter, and more efficient way. This helps to innovate how they relate with their customers and to improve their jobs. This artificial intelligence is being applied into the 1100 department stores and e-commerce fulfillment centers. They are also investing in tools that provides online customers chatbots and voice and image search capabilities (Kohl’s, 2018). The second competing company is Macy’s. The company an omni-channel retail organization and department store that operates through both traditional stores and its online web site. The company sells a wide variety of merchandise, for men, women, and children that includes clothing, cosmetics, home furnishings and other consumer goods. As of April 4, 2018, Kohls operates 690 department stores under the Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s brands. 160 are considered specialty stores which operate under the brand names Bloomingdale’s The Outlet, Bluemercury, and Macy’s (Bloomberg, 2019). Macys is using artificial intelligence in conjunction with a mobile tool which will give customers answers to questions they may have about the store they are shopping in (Loeb, W. 2016). Macy’s is also using virtual and augmented reality tech in stores and has launch the use of VR for Furniture in 69 of its stores nationwide. This allows Macy’s to market its furniture collection without taking up room on the sales floor. A similar technology using a mobile app allows customers to see how several pieces of furniture would fit in their living areas. Virtual mirror technology is also being used in its beauty departments to expose customers to their wide array of cosmetic products by using a kiosk to show how they may look (Anderson, G. 2018). Both companies are benefiting from the technologies that are being used to improve their operations. Kohls has presented a plan of which the business in the case scenario would benefit from as well. The technology that Kohls is using is more rounded and benefits the business as a whole. The concepts of the Cloud, artificial intelligence, automation and mobile, would easily be implemented and seems more logical. This would give the business a method to connect with its customer base and expand its target market.

References

Adair, Bergen (2018) Choosing Between Business Intelligence vs Business Analytics Solutions. Retrieved from, https://selecthub.com/business-intelligence/business-intelligence-vs-business-analytics/

Anderson, George (October 8, 2018) Macy’s Tech Strategy Is Promising, But Scattershot. Retrieved from, https://www.forbes.com/sites/retailwire/2018/10/08/macys-tech-strategy-is-promising-but-scattershot/#ba80fc11b37d

Bloomberg (2019) Multiline Retail Company Overview of Macy’s, Inc. Retrieved from, https://www.bloomberg.com/research/stocks/private/snapshot.asp?privcapId=318091

Loeb, Walter (July 22, 2016) Macy’s Makes Rapid Advances In Technology. Retrieved from, https://www.forbes.com/sites/walterloeb/2016/07/22/macys-rapid-advances-in-technology/#30dd8af07da8

Kohls (April 17, 2018) The Four Technologies to Know: Kohl’s Is Working Smarter With Artificial Intelligence. Retrieved from, https://corporate.kohls.com/news/archive-/2018/april/the-four-technologies-to-know–kohl-s-is-working-smarter-with-ar

Reuters (2019) Profile: Kohls Corp (KSS). Retrieved from, https://www.reuters.com/finance/stocks/company-profile/KSS

WileyPLus (2019) Social Computing-Chapter 9. Retrieved from, https://edugen.wileyplus.com/edugen/lti/main.uni