You are one of the recently recruited interns at an IT company. The company mainly develops information and knowledge management systems for corporate clients. For most major development projects, this requires the company to first carry out a feasibility study and submit the feasibility report to a potential client.
The company is presently working on a feasibility study for developing an information and knowledge management system for a retail client with a number of outlets in the country. The Project Manager is interested in recruiting one of the interns to join the feasibility study. As part of the selection process, she wants to meet each intern to check their basic understanding about information and knowledge management systems for organisations. She has asked each intern to submit a power point presentation with detailed notes covering the following topics:
- an outline of the main features of information management (and types and nature of organisational information systems
- an explanation of the role and importance of knowledge for organisations and the relationship between data, information and knowledge
- an analysis of the concept of knowledge management and the benefits of information and knowledge management to organisations
Following a successful meeting with the Project Manager, you are asked to join the feasibility study. The manager now asks you to collect information about a named retailer in the UK, which can be used for comparative purposes. You should use primary or secondary sources of information. The purpose of this activity is to understand the role of information and communication technology (ICT) currently in place at this organisation.
You are required to analyse the information collected and present your findings in a short report covering the following:
- an explanation of how ICT currently in place at the organisation affects organisational communication
- an evaluation of how ICT in place at the organisation is being used to disseminate knowledge throughout the organisation
The manager is happy with your performance so far. She has now asked you to collect information about other organisations in addition to the one already under study such that you are able to enhance your understanding about the links between knowledge management strategy and competitive advantage. She believes this activity will enhance your contribution to the ongoing feasibility study for the retail client.
A focus on organisational learning, knowledge management strategies and processes at the selected organisations is the key for this activity. You are required to produce a file of information which:
- explains how knowledge management strategies and processes at the given organisations support and facilitate the organisational learning
- justifies the need for maintaining a learning culture in a changing environment within the context of selected examples
- evaluates the relationship between the organisational learning and competitive advantage
ICT in Retail Organization
The organizational communication is defined as the process in which the ideas are collected and coordinated to reach goals both as an individuals and as a group is called organizational communication. The organizational communication is main backbone of any business growth in any organization. The Ecommerce has now facilitated the way to innovative ideas to develop the business in retail industry. The retail industry has now finding new digital technologies as an aid to create a mass income and exposure with the customers. The well-implemented ICT is now one of the basic requirement of the retail industry(Becerra and Sabherwal, 2014).
The report is made under Insight Technology for the case study on the fourth largest retail industry of UK called as Morrison this food based retail chain is the fourth largest retail supermarket chain with more than 450 stores nationwide. The company was established in 1899 and has been winning people’s trust with its new ideas like promoting healthy foods and printing the nutritional facts about the product it servers to its customers. The report will throw light upon the basic ICT the retail chain used to gain such a brand image.
The retail industry that is been taken in the consideration is Morrison’s has 124000 jobs per year around the (Bifulco,et al.2016). The company has been in people’s good books because it encourages the healthy lifestyle and support minimization of waste generation. In order to grow in a much better way the company have adopted many ICT technologies to improvise their data management. The function of the data management is given as follows:
This computerised equipment has undertaken the entire tasks on the billing counter. Self-contained device print bills, gives the sales report, accepts card transaction and check the payment verifications. The machine provide all the benefits which ones needed employees to carry out. The EPOS may be highly expensive to set up and it may take time for employees to get trained and use to the device. It however has greater benefits that the machines are accurate in adding up totals, provide faster results and are more efficient than before. This can enhance the customer services.
The automated process that let shoppers to scan bags, male purchase without any human assistance .This might bring more attention for the customers by giving them more options and these are very much time efficient for they can check a large number of goods in a short period.
Evaluation of ICT in Disseminating Knowledge in Organisational Learning
The technology has reduced the hassle for the customers for cash and changes. The acceptance of credit cards and debit cards had made payment easier for the customers. The security and hassle free of the payment procedure will gain attention of more customers and enhance the overall business of the Morrinsons.
The Morrinson in order to inspire the public have started using energy saving systems and appliances. The energy saving system would enhance the brand reputation and the also will increase the overall business of the company. The company has always been in in limelight for new and better ideas promoting noble cause.
Morrison holds the fourth largest chain around the country; it has to supply the products to its several outlets. The company mainly deliver its products through A1 expressways and the overseas products are imported through plane and ships(Nobile, J., 2017). In order to maintain a constant touch with employers, the packers, the movers and other stake holders the company uses the IT proposed techniques to be connected to them. There is GPS that is used to install the Lorries to track the product delivery. The efficiency of the drivers can also been known through the GPS system regarding the speed, the climate, the roads’ condition. The one-day delivery system and the online retail site have now provided the better convenience to the customers to buy the products and get them delivered at their doorsteps.
In case of Morrisons, the retail giant has been improvising itself through implementing the organisational learning procedures through ICT. The ICT exposure to the employees will help the company to grow and improvise their sales by adapting the technological changes that have been occurring in the recent years. The ICT have become an inseparable part of the business sector. This is the main catalyst for any fundamental change in the structure, operation and management of any organisation(Sanchez et al 2016).
The database helps to keep a track of recent developments, upcoming policies and the impact over society these will help in exponential growth of the business fame.
- The ICT has provided the online retail a huge success by initiating the huge internet exposures.
- The ICT knowledge is used to train the employees before installation and giving access.
- There must be proper training period in order to enhance the skills of the professionals regarding any new device that is been proposed in the retail chain.
- The online retail options like “click to collect”, “cash on delivery”, “order at your doorsteps” are the recent ideas that have been implemented to gain people attention about the industry or the outlet(Hogan and Coote,2014).
This could help Morrisons to give better output in creating a friendly relationship with its customers.
Knowledge management strategies facilitating organizational learning.
Knowledge management strategies have helped in gaining competitive advantages in all the industries (Dalahmeh., 2017). Intellectual capital aids the organizational learning by spreading awareness among all the stakeholders. Taking example of the retail industry, it can help in selling more products, being understandable to the small customers and track the orders of the customers. The online retail and other retail outlets have knowledge management strategies as the epicentre of their system capabilities.
Revenue drivers benefited through KMS
The KMS facilitate the knowledge management in the task retail industry both on cost based and revenue based. The revenue drivers are benefited as the KMS provides the number of new customers joined the company, the recurring customers, and the unit of product sold and at what price. Through the revenue drivers mainly is easier through the product selection and category management. The KMS mainly aids in drawing attention of more customers by maintaining a transparency among the customer. It also keeps the track about the price at which the last product is sold.
Cost drivers benefited through KMS
The KMS facilitate the cost management by keeping the track of the sale going on in the market , the selection of the price regarding the product, customer acquisition, retention, acquisition of the price of goods , marketing sector, loyalty programs ,customers data . The cost drivers determine the overall profit by enhancing the products, the policies, the innovation and operations of management and this can be done through proposing KMS in the organisational learning.
How does Knowledge Management strategies help in organizational learning?
The organisational learning is aided by the Knowledge Management strategies through following reasons:
- The knowledge management strategies provides a better way of organisational learning by giving a proper blue print of about how an organization should proceed step by step towards gaining the knowledge about the subject. Taking for example , an organization needs to find the information about what is trending in the market. In order to extract data , there is infinite number of ways but the random search will only complicate the situation and will tend to form a bit of complexity about the project. The proper plan will aid to follow a schematic approach to the problem and give the better results than before.
- Knowledge management facilitate organizational learning by creating time efficiency. The proper strategies gives the organization a proper idea before approaching and analysing the solution to the situation that are arising in the organization. A beforehand plan will save the time and facilitate better opportunities to enlarge the business. Knowledge management strategies provides map to proceed towards learning about anything new. The learning approach is quite important in organizational learning. It aid the organisational learning to provide to systematic process to gain knowledge about the topic.
- Knowledge management strategies open further opportunities for organizational learning. The given strategies provide further aid to the organization for diverse problem or situations, it shows that sometimes a number of problems could be solved with a single strategy.
The Learning culture in Changing Environment
From the traditional retail store where people used to get the things according to the face to face interaction with the shopkeepers to the online pantry and grocery stores that have been facilitating the products to our door steps(Villa, 2018). There is an exponential growth of the innovation and technologies with time. In order to maintain the pace with the new generation it is quite necessary to adapt and learn the innovations and be updated about the upcoming technology. The retail company like Morrisons, Tesco, Amazon have a neck to neck competition in the global e market. The proper training of the technologies is quite necessary to yield a profitable brand image in the market.
The learning culture can help the company to be more competitive by knowing about the market. It could serve the customers better through the constant research over the trending varieties of the products in the local market. Learning ICT would provide more closeness to the problems of the customers; the learning culture provides more knowledge about the remote areas and gives opportunity to the companies to establish in local and remote areas.
Organisational learning and competitive advantages
The organisational learning provides more exposure to the companies and benefit them to collect and coordinate with their customers(Wang and Wang,2014). Through organizational learning, the employees of the company will be at ease to work with the new machines that uses ICT. The training with the devices beforehand will make the work more efficient and time saving. As per the retail company as Morrinson , the organisational learning will speed up the competition , bring attention of many customers , provide better profits , develop better solutions and speed up the working of the organization.
These things are only possible when there is a proper organizational communication and the system management in the field of knowledge management strategies.
The report mainly focus on the study of a UK retail company Morrinson and it has been adopting ICT to benefit kits organisation. The report is divided into two activities. The first part deals with the use of ICT in a retail organisation and how it is used to spread the knowledge in an organisation. The activity 3 depicts the scope of knowledge management strategies in the organisation and its application, it also throws light on the learning culture benefits and how the organisational learning is directly proportionate to the competitive advantage of the company.
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