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Discuss about the Identification And Analysis Of Problems At Hair For You.

The business world has become increasingly competitive, with many new players coming in and competing for the same market share. Further, technological changes have continued to grow and advance unabated, making the world smaller and creating the concept of globalization in which businesses, people, economies, and other environmental (business) factors more interconnected. Businesses are increasingly finding themselves in the cross hairs of these dynamics; on the one hand, there are external factors, such as increased competition and environmental factors putting pressure on the organization and on the other hand, internal dynamics, such as decision making and management and operational processes to be considered (Brooks, Weatherston and Wilkinson, 2010). As such, businesses and organizations are thrust into a cycle in which they must continuously change and adapt, just to stay afloat; the business world has evolved such that adaptability has become the new competitive edge, above even novel factors such as market leadership and innovation, according to Reeves and Deimler (2016). New trends such as the massive use of social media and other technology platforms have fundamentally changed, or is changing, how brands interact with their customers. Social media has become even more influential than traditional media (Cunningham, Silver & Craig, 2016), (Merchant, 2015). These are realities that businesses can not afford to ignore. In this context, this paper is a business analysis of the Hair for You business case in which a patriarch’s death has occasioned three children to take over the salon business, each of who are managing the three branches. The business has been experiencing pressures from competition, thinning profits, and technological challenges. The paper will identify the challenges, classify them, list models and techniques that can be utilized in analyzing the situation and critique them. The paper also brings the issues together using a rich picture diagram and then uses Blum’s paper to place the SSM in a specific quadrant.

The Hair for You case study brings to the fore both soft and hard problems; there are problems and challenges due to human factors as there are problems and challenges due to technical issues. The technical issues emanate, in a way, from the human problems, so it is logical to begin by identifying and analyzing the human (soft) challenges and problems.  One of the biggest problems is communication as they cant seem to effectively communicate. The other challenge is poor problem solving as well as wanting leadership qualities. Another challenge is an apparent lack of grasp of modern, cost effective and widely used technology as Bill Junior proposes the use of SMS to communicate with customers, when methods, such as social media could even be more effective. These are soft problems. The other issues are technical, including lack of business systems information management systems, poor interconnectivity, and reliance on manual legacy systems such as manual pay processing and making telephone calls to book appointments. Another problem is lack of business integration where there are disparate branches that are not integrated with business information systems management. Another technical problem is a lack of Internet and web presence; all these are hard problems.

Stakeholders and problem owners

Stakeholders

Interest

Jordan

Very High

Bill Jr

Very High

Sally

Very High

Hair for You

High

Hair for You

Staff

Customers

High

Problem Owners

Problem(s)

Owner

Communication

Jordan, Bill Jr, Sally

Problem solving framework

Jordan, Bill Jr, Sally

Investment in technology

Jordan, Bill Jr, Sally

New product line

Jordan

New markets

Jordan, Bill Jr, Sally

New communication channels (using social media platforms)

Jordan, Bill Jr, Sally

Automated cash register and appointment system

Jordan

Branch expansion

Sally

Hair for You does not really use a modern ICT system; however, it is still a system that can be evaluated and analyzed using various tools, techniques, and models. The techniques include the data flow diagram (DFD) that is used for functional modeling. Another approach would be the use of object oriented analysis and design (OOAD) used technically to analyze and design systems. The Business process model and notation(BPMN) is also another approach that can be used in the hair for You situation.

DFDs refer to graphical representations of how data flows within and through an information system where its aspects and processes are modeled. It is usually used as a preliminary measure to develop a system’s overview without getting into great detail. As such, the DFD is a useful tool in having a higher level view of a system and is therefore, an important tool to help with effective planning. Hair for You can use it to evaluate its systems before going into designing the system.  The DFD is also valuable in communicating to present users, the existing system, being a graphical technique that is straightforward and therefore, simplifying understanding the system. DFDs can also offer detailed presentations of components in a system and both non technical and technical audiences can understand it (Davies, Green, Rosemann, Indulska & Gallo, 2006). However, DFDs has its limitations and demerits; it only gives a basic, high level view and does not go into the details. The DFD takes a long time to develop and this can be a challenge for the case study, given the urgency of the challenges. Because it takes long, managerial support for it may wane such that it is not completed or done thoroughly. The DFD also leaves out physical considerations, yet these are important components of a business information system. Further, developers and programmers coding or developing a system may be confused by it as it omits physical aspects and is too basic and not detailed (Shen, Wall, Zaremba, Chen & Browne, 2004).

This refers to the graphical presentation and description of a diagram that defines business processes within a business process model. The BPM has a major drawback in that it is very complex, having 100 graphical process elements as well as beingabout 500 pages. This makes it not only difficult to adapt, but also to learn for practical use as the different semantics and elements can be interpreted wrongly leading to wrong conclusions. Further, its execution is not standardized while its tools provide only partial support for executing BPMN diagrams (Grikštait?, 2008). The models are ambiguous and so cannot be effectively used in sharing models, while its support for decision making, business rules, and routine work and knowledge is weak or poor. However, it has certain merits, including being internationally ISO standardized and being useful in defining diagram interchange and execution semantics, apart from having a rich repertoire of tolls and diagrams (Papajorgji, Pinet, Guimara?es &Papathanasiou, 2016).  

Data Flow Diagrams

This is the procedure for identifying engineering requirements for software with respect to the object model of the software. With the OOAD, it is not easy to determine all necessary objects and classes needed for a system, and may lead to ill fitting software. OOAD requires a different approach to managing software projects, making its effective implementation difficult; project managers then easily confuse substance and style (Dathan & Ramnath, 2015). The OOAD lacks a an explicit procedure for reuse of code and other semantics; this implies that there is limited reuse in large scale projects. Software applications are developed for scalability and reuse is an important factor in ensuring scalability and modification for future environments. However, OOAD is easy to understand and use, as well as being easy to maintain. Its also able to help reduce the time and cost of development and improves system quality as programs can be reused (Wang, 2006). 

The rich picture diagram is as shown below; 

The Blum’s matrix has four quadrants namely, conceptual, formal, problem oriented, and product oriented quadrants. Each quadrant alludes to the methodology of solving problems and coming up with solutions, as shown below;

Problem oriented

Product oriented

Conceptual

I

II

Formal

III

IV

The process of developing software is a transformation of needs into products to handle those needs  and first, a conceptual model that defines how the software responds to the need must be developed.  The conceptual model is then transformed into the formal model prescribing what the software will do (Blum,1994). The SSM is an approach to BPM (business process modeling) that defines how organizational processes are modeled used in solving specific and general problems in managing change. In the context of the Blum’s diagram (Fig 2), SSM will fall into the fourth quadrant. This is because SSM has seven steps that start by identifying the situation considered problematic and sequentially goes to to expressing the problem situation, followed by a formulation of root definitions. Conceptual models are then built and compared to real world situations before possible changes are defined and action taken to improve the problem situation (Wilson & Van Haperen, 2015). In the quadrant IV; the methods are used to create modules (correct units of implementation) such as objects and program packages, which is the module aimed, in SSM model, at developing conceptual models that can work in  the real world that are implemented and used to improve the problem situation. 

References

Blum, B. (1994). A taxonomy of software development methods. Communications of the ACM. 37.

Brooks I, Weatherston J and Wilkinson G (2010) Globalisation, challenges and changes. Pearson Education Catalogue. Pearson Education. Available at: https://catalogue.pearsoned.co.uk/assets/hip/gb/hip_gb_pearsonhighered/samplechapter/Brooksch9.pdf (accessed 05/09/17).

Cunningham S., Silver J., & Craig D. (2016). YouTube, multichannel networks and the accelerated evolution of the new screen ecology. Convergence. 22, 376-391.

Dathan, B., & Ramnath, S. (2015). Object-Oriented Analysis, Design and Implementation [recurso electrónico] An Integrated Approach. Springer EBooks 2015 [Recurso Electrónico].

Davies, I., Green, P., Rosemann, M., Indulska, M., & Gallo, S. (2006). How do practitioners use conceptual modeling in practice? Data & Knowledge Engineering. 58, 358.

Deimler MRM (2016) Adaptability: The New Competitive Advantage. Harvard Business Review. Available at: https://hbr.org/2011/07/adaptability-the-new-competitive-advantage (accessed 05/09/17).

Grikštait? J., (2008) Business process modelling and simulation: advantages and disadvantages. Global Academic Society Journal: Social Science Insight 1(3): 4–14. Available at: https://scholararticles.net/business-process-modelling-and-simulation-advantages-and-disadvantages/ (accessed 06/09/17).

Merchant M (2015) How social media is giving mainstream media a run for its money. DailyO - Opinion News & Analysis on Latest Breaking News India. Living Media India Limited. Available at: https://www.dailyo.in/politics/social-media-twitter-facebook-new-york-times-national-geographic-buzzfeed/story/1/2877.html (accessed 05/09/17).

Papajorgji, P. J., Pinet, F., Guimara?es, A. M., & Papathanasiou, J. (2016). Automated enterprise systems for maximizing business performance. A volume in the Advances in business information systems and analytics (ABISA)

Shen, H., Wall, B., Zaremba, M., Chen, Y., & Browne, J. (2004). Integration of business modelling methods for enterprise information system analysis and user requirements gathering. Computers In Industry. 54, 307-323.

Wang, L. (2006). Fuzzy systems and knowledge discovery: third international conference, FSKD 2006, Xi'an, China, September 24-28, 2006 : proceedings. Berlin, Springer.

Wilson, B., & Van Haperen, K. (2015). Soft systems thinking, methodology and the management of change. London, Palgrave Macmillan Education.

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