Hardware Requirements For Pizza Systems Information Technology Essay

Introduction and Problem Statement-

We are primarily interested in implementing Information Systems to all the working units of the pizza shop, so that we are able to provide better services and thus, an enhanced experience to both offline (in-store) and on-line (web-based) customers. Since the pizza shop is interested in expanding their business from a small-size business into a medium-size enterprise by opening up branches in various new locations and also has an objective to provide better online services (developing their company in e-business aspects) and gain online popularity, we have to make analysis and thereby apply several information system techniques so that the company succeeds in its motive.

Analysis of Hardware Requirement for the Pizza Shop-

Making decisions about the hardware requirements is based on the analysis of various factors such as the projected budget and the speed required. But the large variety high utility of hardware available often makes the hardware decisions a little difficult because of the fact that computer technologies become obsolete more quickly than other organizational technologies. Basically, hardware refers to the physical equipment used for the input, processing, output, and storage activities of a computer system. In our case we make use of the following hardware components:

Central processing unit (CPU) – we have decided to make use of Intel core i7processor [1] or Intel core2 processor [2] in the CPU.

Primary storage- A storage capacity of 6GB-8GB in the hard-drive, for better speed in processing and multi-tasking situations.

Secondary storage- A storage capacity of up to 1 terabyte for storage of information such as databases of employees, customers, products used in the shop, etc.

Input technologies- We have decided to make use of basic devices such as keyboard, mouse and advanced devices such as touch screens (to make work easier and faster), Voice recognition [3] for access of confidential information only by authenticated persons (we do not make use of protection mechanisms provided by passwords because in today’s era of technology it is not fully safe since password cracking has become very easy and common).

Output technologies- Liquid crystal display (LCD) screens and printers.

Communication technologies- Internet connections.

Transportation of products-

The transportation of the products can done by appointing a team of employees for this department, since our main objective is to expand and promote our business, initially we would require a minimum of 20 personnel equipped with fast and fuel efficient road transportation facilities, for each branch in case of local(within the same city branches), now in case of inter-city transports we have to appoint equivalent number of personnel and also have to make tie-ups with transportation management of rails and air transport. The transaction of products and allotment of duties to the employees should be done and all the details must be saved in hardware memory.

Analysis of Software Requirement for the Pizza Shop-

Computer hardware can be only effective according to the instructions we give it, and those instructions are contained in software. Software has become an everyday feature of all the businesses. For our business plan we will require the following software-

Operating system- Windows 7[4]

Spreadsheets- Microsoft Excel 2010, for managing tabular information, or any information which requires storage in tabular form.

Word Processing software- Microsoft Word 2010, for managing all types of text files.

Data Management- Microsoft Access, for efficient management of all data.

Personal Information Management software- Microsoft Outlook, this software allows users to create and maintain management calendars, appointments, etc.

Personal Finance software- Microsoft Money, which allows users to maintain checkbooks, track investments, monitor credit cards, bank and pay bills electronically.

Web Authoring software- Microsoft FrontPage, which allows users to design Web sites and publish them on the web.

Communications software- Netscape Messenger, which allows users to communicate with other people over any distance.

Security Suite software- McAfee Internet Security Suite (www.mcafee.com)

Anti-malware Product – VirusScan (www.mcafee.com).

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Firewall[7]- McAfee Internet Security (www.mcafee.com)

Anti-spam Software – SpamKiller (www.mcafee.com)

For restoring backup files- We will use the Windows Backup utility to restore the backup copies on the hard disk.

Analysis of data and databases that can be employed by the company-

All the business applications require data. For managing data and databases in the pizza shop, we would require a database management system (DBMS), in order to manage data in all aspects of our business such as employee data, customer’s data, product store’s data etc. It’s main usage is to store all the essential data in files. The application of a DBMS [5] at the pizza shop will provide the following benefits-

Minimization of Data redundancy- i.e., the storage of the same data in many places is avoided there preventing unnecessary usage of memory space.

Prevention Data isolation- Applications will be able to access data associated with other applications, thereby preventing creation of exclusive data sets for all the applications, and also leading to efficient memory management.

Prevention of Data inconsistency: Creation of various copies of the data is not agreed upon.

Enhanced data security.

Maintenance of data integrity- In many cases, data needs to have certain constraints, such as no alphabetic characters in a Social Security number field and DBMS helps in achieving these.

The administrator can also add, delete, access, and analyze data stored in one location. He can access the data by using query and reporting tools that are part of the DBMS or by using application programs specifically written to access the data.

All these advantages in the database system can considerably optimize the handling of high volumes of orders by customers, since the manager/employee will be able to store and retrieve data about customers very efficiently. In case the same customer places an order again, since the data about which is already

stored (upon his first order) can be retrieved very fast using DBMS and the overall processing of the store will become increasingly efficient especially in peak hours(timings for lunch and dinner). This feature would also provide ease to the customer, since he would not have to explains his location over and over again, and this may lead to the customers increased interest in availing the pizza shop services again in the future.

Implementation of Data Warehousing-

We have implemented data warehouses for the following type of cases-

If the manager of the pizza shop wanted to know the profit margin on sales of vegetarian pizzas, he could find out from his database, using SQL [6] (structured query language) or QBE (query by example)[7]. However, if he needed to know the trend in the profit margins on sales of vegetarian pizzas over the last 3 years, he would have a very difficult query to construct in SQL or QBE. The pizza shop manager’s problem shows us two reasons why organizations are building data warehouses. First, the organization’s databases have the necessary information to answer his query, but it is not organized in a way that makes it easy for him to search for needed information and also, the organization’s databases are designed to process millions of transactions per day. Therefore, complicated queries might take a long time to answer and also might degrade the performance of the databases. As a result of these problems, companies are using data warehousing tools to make it easier and faster for users to access, analyze, and query data. Data mining tools (discussed in the next section) allow users to search for valuable business information in a large database or data warehouse.

Implementation of Data Mining-

Data mining can perform two basic operations: predicting trends and behaviors and identifying previously unknown patterns. This analysis provides users with a view of what is happening. Data mining addresses, why it is happening and provides predictions of what will happen in the future and also automates the process of finding predictive information in large databases. In the pizza shop, implementation of data mining will lead to the following benefits in the business-

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In the aspect of sales- Predicting sales, preventing theft and fraud, and determining correct storage levels and since the business has been projected to expand, data mining will also lead to knowledge of distribution schedules among various outlets.

In the aspect of Manufacturing and production- Predicting machinery failures and finding key factors that help optimize manufacturing capacity.

Marketing- Classifying customer demographics that can be used to predict which customer will respond to a mailing or buy a particular product.

E-Commerce Solutions to generate an online business presence-

The concepts of E-Business comprise of buying and selling of goods and services, it also refers to servicing customers, collaborating with business partners, and performing electronic transactions within an organization.

We have planned to put into use the following features of E-business for the pizza shops-

Online direct marketing- Using this feature the pizza shop can directly sell its services to customers via websites in the internet.

Advertising- Since a majority of the people today access internet, advertising on the internet would be very useful and profitable to the pizza shop.

Electronic Payment Systems- Usage of this feature will enable clients to pay for goods and services electronically, rather than writing a check or using cash. Electronic payment systems include electronic checks, electronic credit cards, purchasing cards, and electronic cash. Payments are an integral part of doing business, and using electronic payment system would be of ease to both the client and the business.

 E-Business Solutions that can be utilized to improve the management of supply chain-

The function of supply chain management (SCM) is to plan, organize, and optimize the supply chain’s

activities such as flow of materials, information, money, and services from raw material suppliers, through factories and warehouses to the end customers. The e-business solutions that we will use here are-

Information Sharing along the supply chain over the internet – For instance if we provide access to information about usage and daily requirement of cheese on a daily basis by every branch of the pizza store to the manufacturer whom we are dealing with, then this knowledge will enable the manufacturer to provide timely and efficient replenishment of cheese to every branch of the pizza store.

Using Electronic Inventories – In order to deal with the unexpected uncertainties of supply chain in the pizza shop, we can build inventories so that customers can have what they want at the correct time, and a minimal amount of standardized stock can also be maintained. Information about these inventories can be efficiently stored and updated in the electronic databases. The electronic storage of information reduces the probabilities of errors, and also free employees from manual labor of maintaining information about the stock of products.

Efficient Telecommunication Networks used to attract customers-

In order to attract customers and provide them an enhanced experience we will make use of the following-

Publishing information and attractive offers for customers, at various social networking sites such as www.facebook.com, www.myspace.com, etc.

Uploading video advertisements about the pizza shop at www.youtube.com, which is a social networking site for videos.

Conducting online surveys, for the betterment as well as knowing about the current popularity and likes/dislikes about the pizza shops. Blogs can also be created, a blog is a personal Web site, open to the public, in which the site creator expresses his or her feelings or opinions. Accordingly, modifications can be made in order to increase profitability

Internet telephony (voice-over Internet protocol or VoIP) i.e., use of the Internet as the

transmission medium for telephone calls. This can enable the customers to make internet calls, thereby providing ease in communication to the pizza shop.

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Decision Support Systems for our system-

Decision support systems (DSSs) basically combine the models and data in an attempt to solve unstructured problems with extensive user involvement. DSS will provide interactive to data, enable manipulation of these data, and to provide business managers and analysts of the pizza shop the ability to conduct appropriate analyses. For application of Decision support systems in the pizza shop we have decided to carry out the following steps-

Sensitivity analysis [8]- the managers of the pizza shop will conduct this analysis in order to predict how their decisions can have impact on other decisions. For instance, promotion of non-vegetarian pizzas at a time where the non-vegetarian ingredients are expensive in the market, would considerably impact the pizza shop’s profitability. For countering these problems the manager can make use of sensitive model or nonsensitive model.

What if analysis [9]- the manager of the pizza shop will conduct this analysis in order to deal with unexpected uncertainties or problems and also predict its impact. For instance, what will happen to the total inventory cost if the originally assumed cost of carrying inventories is not 10 percent but 12 percent? In a well designed Business intelligence system[10], managers themselves can interactively ask the computer these types of questions as many times as they need to.

Goal-Seeking Analysis [11]- Goal-seeking analysis would enable the manager to predict future situations in comparison to the current scenario. For instance, the manager of the pizza shop would want to project future sales or meeting a target of profits based on current profits, let us consider for example that the current profits are of $2million, now he might want to know, what sales volume and additional advertising would be necessary to generate a profit of $3 million. To find out he would perform a goal-seeking analysis.

Group Decision Support Systems[12]- This would make managers located at different physical location to communicate through computer support systems which serves primarily as a vehicle for improving communication, coordination, and problem solving.

Technologies to enhance business processes-

Usage of Digital Dashboards [13]-This feature will be used by the top-level executives of the pizza shop. Using this technology they can have access to information all the levels of information in a fast and efficient manner.

Usage of Expert Systems[14]-This technology can aid the managers in the decision making process since expert systems possess the abilities that can reach a level of performance comparable to a human expert in certain or specialized problem areas.

 Enhancing the online presence by selling products with customers over the web-

We have projected to achieve an enhanced online presence by providing better services for online transactions by establishing a contract with the online e-commerce website Paypal. We have chosen this site because it provides features such as funding with an electronic debit from a bank account or by a credit card, easy user interface and secure transactions which also relieves the customers of thefts and other threats of online transactions. Since PayPal operates in 190 markets, users of most locations can access and easily make transactions through Paypal for services of the pizza shop. Also PayPal allows customers to send, receive, and hold funds in 24 currencies worldwide, so when in future branches of the pizza shop are opened in several countries, this feature will be very useful.

References-

James O’Brien, 2009. Introduction to Information Systems, 15th Edition. 15 Edition. McGraw-Hill/Irwin.

R. Kelly Rainer, 2010. Introduction to Information Systems: Supporting and Transforming Business. 3 Edition. Wiley.

Ralph M. Stair, 1997. An Introduction to Information Systems. Edition. Course Technology.

James A. O’Brien, 1997. Introduction To Information Systems: An Internetworked Enterprise Perspective. 2 Sub Edition. Richard D Irwin.

R. Kelly Rainer, 2009. Introduction to Information Systems, Binder Ready Version: Enabling and Transforming Business. 3ird Edition Edition. Wiley.

Judith C. Simon, 2000. Introduction to Information Systems. Student international edition Edition. Wiley.

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