Information systems comprising of for example hardware, software, data, personnel management systems, sales and marketing management systems can be classified into Management Information system, Accounting information system, Financial Information system, Sales, Marketing information system etc or is better classified based on the type of support they provide at different managerial or operational levels.
A small business enterprise such as a toy store can use these Information Systems to improve existing management strategies as well as to improvise new ones to increase sales, attract potential customers, to increase communication, both within and outside the enterprise, to get feedback from the existing and old customers, to maintain a sales registry and more importantly to shift to Supply Chain Management strategy. To have a web presence today is like having a sign board outside the store.
Web advertising opens up new markets unreachable until now. New Technology like Internet, Intranet, Client –Server technology, small business software, mobile communications, notebook PC’s have made it possible for a small business like my toy store to make its presence felt and sales soar sky high. The Information-Communication-Technology-Computer revolution is here to stay providing exciting new opportunities in the future. INFORMATION SYSTEMS – APPLICATIONS AND USE IN A SMALL BUSINESS ENTERPRISE
Information Systems are used to manage, operate and evaluate various functions in a business enterprise. Transaction Processing System, Office Automation System, Marketing Information System, Sales Force Automation System, Human Resource, Accounting and Financial Information Systems, Expert Systems and Artificial Intelligence are the various types. At the Managerial level, Executive Support System, Management Information System and Decision Support system help the decision makers and planners and policy makers.
In a small business enterprise like my toy store starting from the ground level, Technology and software training programs on a small scale will motivate the sales personnel. Supply Chain Management System is a smart business strategy I could use in my store. Once a toy is sold , the sale is recorded on a computer and by connecting it to all computers in the store by an intranet server, the sale is registered across all of them and captures customer satisfaction into sales.
This will be useful for me in the managerial position to get instant sales reports and for the operational managers and floor managers to track sales and know the movement of goods, thus, knowing at any moment which toys are the best sold, which brand of toys are more profitable and which toys are thus being liked more is only a click away. Hence I can alter the look of my store, the costumes of the INFORMATION SYSTEMS – APPLICATIONS AND USE IN A SMALL BUSINESS ENTERPRISE
people dressed outside and know which free toys attract more customers based on the instant sales reports generated by my desktop. Web presence today is a must for any business and a website describing the toys in the store, the food court in the center, the free toys and a customer feedback form online with a small discount at my store for those who fill it are few strategies to advertise and boost sales at the same time. Online display of the toys along with their pricing and later on even ordering from home would definitely open up a whole new market of home shoppers.
Targeted Marketing, i. e. searching for those who are already searching for toys to buy online, by using billboards, banners, keyword rich articles, Search engine optimized web advertising will boost the sales of my store. Also a customer service support system by having 1 or 2 people who would always be there to answer any questions the customer may have, both online and on the phone will help build up a pool of loyal customers and newer shoppers who come to my store not just for the toys but for the whole experience of toy shopping.
Information Systems, networking systems , computers, mobile communications and the Internet technology and what is probably yet to come is a boon for a small business enterprise and will revolutionize my toy store making it an online competitor in the future for any of the worlds largest toy stores.
Laudon, C. Kenneth, Laudon P. Jane, Management Information Systems, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, (2000) Retrieved Nov 8, 2004 from the world wide web: http://myphlip. pearsoncmg. com/cw/mpbookhome. cfm? vbookid=256 Information from world wide web, Retrieved Nov 8,2004: http://www. tutor2u. net/business/ict/intro_information_system_types. htm