The Project Scope Of Technical Requirements Information Technology Essay

The project scope of the antique 2000 was to expand the sales of their products so that they could be sold in every corner of the world. Products which they wanted to sell among other things were being purchased from auctions and local antique shops and sell them on the Online using Internet for the profit price.

To achieve their aim they came out with an idea of designing, developing and implementing a web based system in which customer from different parts can access to their products, hence increase the sales of their products. In one of the ways to succeed in their project, they initially managed to allocate $70,000 usd for purchasing the hardware and development of a system.

1.1.1 Technical Requirements of Antique 2000

Having seen the objectives and aims of the project, the next step will be to look into Technical issues in the implementation of a new system. Looking at the growth of Information technology, we can assume that most of us know how to use internet, how to browse internet for information. So for the antique 2000, allowing the people to find their needs on net by a click is very important to be considered. For this we need a website. Selling the products on net is also known as Ecommerce and which widely adopted by western countries. The major phase of designing Ecommerce is development of website and we need to look into many factors as follows.

Programmers/web designers

You have 4 programmers available; all are skilled in coding Visual Basic:

Two are skilled at developing complex databases and spreadsheets.

One is skilled at developing GUI’s.

One has skills in all areas, but will take 50% more time to do a task compared to the three specialists above.

In order to come up with a highly designed and secured web, there is a need to hire competent developers who could utilize their skills in developing the site. It is expected these developers to be competent in Visual Studio Package software since it is the recommended package by the clients of the system that is to be implemented This is among the most important area of technical issues since the success of this project depend mostly in these experts.

Web Designing Tool

It is expected that after the process of designing a system is completed, the site will be developed using Visual studio 2008 software. The developing team decided to use this software because of its advanced features compared to others like HTML which do not have advanced secured features. By using VS2008, it is expected that the developing team could come up with the most secured website which could not be easily hacked by hackers and intruders.

Web Hosting and Web Space

This is another crucial area of technical requirements since after the implementation of the system is complete, there is a need for the website to be online so that customers from different corner of the world could have an easily access to the products of their company. Among other issues which needs be to taken into account is choosing the Internet Service Provider (ISP) who could help in this process of hosting the system online.

To host a website on net, it is necessary to own our own space on web, i.e web space. Web Space is the place where one can host or place their web pages which are available to the customers. Here we could find the financial issues associated depending on the ISP’s demand. Again the cost of web space depends on the competition existing between different ISP’s.

Web Maintenance

As soon as the implementation of a system is complete, the next step is the maintenance of the system which includes error fixing, updates and necessary modifications because requirements are incorrectly understood or specified, requirement analysis is not completed in time, and the needs of the business have change.

The Maintenance phase is being categorized into three types for the comprehensive running of the web system namely: corrective maintenance, perfective maintenance and adaptive maintenance

1.1.2 Non technical requirements for the Antique 2000

Licensed Office

This is one of the most important aspects of non-technical requirements in implementing the Antique 2000 office. There will be some legal procedures to be follow to get the license of operating their business. The motive behind having the license is to establish the type or nature of the business the Antique 2000 is planning to do. This process usually involve some costs to be incurred

Buildings

This is another important area of non-technical requirements since the physical location of the office needs to be established. Obviously, it is expected that some funds will have to be used in the process of furnishing the office and legal cost incurred in acquiring the premise.

Funding the Implementation

This is the primary non-technical requirement of the Antique 2000 since almost for every step/process to be completed/continue, will basically depends on the availability of funds to finance the implementation of the project. Initially; they had allocated $70,000 for purchasing the hardware and develop a web-based system.

Computers

Developing Antique 2000 goes together with the devices in which the system is expected to be installed, here we mean computers in which at the end of the day, is going to be the place in which the site is expected to run. We also believe that users who will be accessing the site will be having enough exposure on the general knowledge of how to use the computers and particularly internet.

1.1.3 Things to be considered while designing website.

The following are possible requirements to be taken into account when designing a web site for Antique 2000 namely:

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Browser environment

Web designers of Antique 2000, must build pages in a manner that creates a few barriers as possible to getting to information, regardless of the users’ ability and the device used to access the Web.

Internet Explorer Browser, Mozilla fire fox

User Preferences

As we have just insisted on the importance of accessibility in a web based system, user preferences is another important area which the wed designers of Antique 2000 must take into account as it gives the user a choice to change the format or layout of the page to his/her choice. This ensures that users who need to change the layout to meet special needs, such as enlarging type to compensate for impaired vision are able to do so. Simply by changing preference settings in the browser, anyone can affect the appearance and functionality of web pages in the following ways like changing font size and style, change the background and colors, turn images off, turn off pop-up windows etc.

Platforms

Another area which is expected to affects how users of Antique 2000 web site is the platforms of their computers since there will be a high probability that the expected users of the site might having different platforms installed into their computers. In order to make the system cop with different platforms, the following strategies could be of help as follows:

There are some fonts, which are available in many platforms; the designers must provide a list back-up font in case your specified font is not available.

Before you decide to use a particular media format, make sure it will be compatible with all platforms. Otherwise the designers of Antique 2000 will have to offer choice between Quick Time, Windows Media and Real Media and let the user making a choice.

1.Web Design, by Jennifer Niederst Robbins ibid pg 35

TASK 2

Resource Allocation and Time Management

Resource allocation:

Resource allocation is a plan of how the available resources can be used in the most successful way; these resources could be in different ways depending on the nature of the project, which is being done. It could also be the process of allocating resources to different stages of a project, like which resource should be present in the plan and what level of funding it should get.

Resources that we refer here can be in terms of funding available, manpower and technical expertise available. The way the management is going to use these resources to achieve its aim and objectives of the project are very vital to the success and existence of the business. Given that the task that wants to design a web based system which could make the business run in a smoother way, it will be very vital to give priority to which departments need extra resources over others.

2.1.1 Resources required for Antique 2000

As we have already seen the desire of the Antique 2000 management to come up with the web based system, and the fact that we have already seen the importance of resource allocation, the next step could be the identification of resources required for the Antique 2000 project which among other things could be as follows:

Web based System

Designing a web site involves a number of issues from the first step of requirements analysis up to the point where the system is ready for use. The requirements analysis is expected to involve the owners of Antique 2000 who will be responsible in telling the developing team their requirements which they wan the system to meet. This is one of the most important areas since it is the focus of how the system is going to be implemented. Also accurate and up to date information is another important area needs to be considered if the business is to be successful from customers’ point of view

Training

During the implementation of the system, it is expected to have people who will be there to provide training to the management of the company so as to enable them have smooth running of the business there will be a need to hire or employ new staff with specialization on Information Technology aspects.

In reality the management of Antique 2000will have assign some more resources with regard to funds so that it will help in the investment of the project and conducting training for its expected staff, they will have among other things to have some briefing meetings which will help in downloading worries since they will be having newly means of doing business online and hence there will be a chance that some staff might have fear on it.

2.1.2Time Scales and Allocation of resources:

One of the most important parts of any project planning is time scale and time allocation since the delivery of the project will mainly depend on these two issues. If the project is not delivered on time then it is more likely that even the cost might rise up and hence the expected amount profits can as well get lost. During the process of timesclaling, it is important to make sure the allocation of time considers emergency issues or any interruptions that might come across by chance

For these two issues to be addressed effectively, it needs experienced project manager who will be able to handle even unforeseen events

One of the things that can give credit to the project manager is the ability to estimate the duration needed to implement a project. If timescales and allocation of resources are underestimated, then it is likely that the project might not be finished on times, which will results into the need to allocate more funds and resources unnecessarily.

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The advantage of chart is that it gives an indication of how task are timed and scheduled on weekly basis, each task and activity have a start and finish date and with the help of the project manager can plan his/her progress. Projects are often best run using simple Timetables and Action Plans. These should be prepared and negotiated with project staff to improve plans and get buy-in. During the project these will contain sufficient control points and deliveries to monitor project progress and take any appropriate remedial action.

It gives an outline of time allocated for initiating and completing the project plan for implementing the new IS strategy for Antique 2000, the project is expected to finish after a period of 3 weeks

The project shall begun with designing the web pages which can be done externally and need not interfere with normal office operations, therefore the first 1 week for web page design can accommodate the second week for general staff meetings to gauge staff reactions to proposed new strategies, this stage can help the project manager to identify areas where extra caution is needed based on feedback from the staff.

The last week would be allocated for providing training for staff, it should also involve handing over the final completed project along with system and user documentation to the management, the report shall also include the progress made and advantages in strategic areas of the business due to the new IS strategy

thereby ensuring that there is proper integration between each department during and after implementation of IS strategy. Simultaneously the new IS will be tested for flaws and corrective actions will be taken,

2.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gantt_chart (date of access 4th April 09)

3. TUJL;Shttp://www.blurtit.com/q980613.html (date of access 4th April 2009)

4. http://www.builderau.com.au/strategy/projectmanagement (date of access 4th April 2009)

TASK 3

Leadership Styles

When it comes to managing a team at work or anywhere else, leadership style which is going to be used is crucial to the success of the project. Therefore the understanding of these styles of leadership and their disadvantages can help in one way or another to become a good leader.

Basically, there are three types of styles namely; The Democratic style, The Autocratic style, and Laissez-faire.

3.1 The Democratic Style

In this style, team participation and involvement is a key component issue. However, the leader maintains the final decision making authority.

Develops plans to help staff evaluate their own performance

Allows staff to establish goals

Encourages staff to grow on the job and be promoted

Recognizes and encourages achievement

3.2 The Autocratic Style

This style involves single point of authority and decision-making. Some appropriate conditions to use this system could be for the teams that are not performing, it can as well be used when there is no enough time and your teams are well motivated.

The classical approach

Manager retains as much power and decision making authority as possible

Does not consult staff, nor allowed to give any input

Staff expected to obey orders without receiving any explanations

Structured set of rewards and punishments

Greatly criticized during the past 30 years

Gen X staff highly resistant

Autocratic leaders:

Rely on threats and punishment to influence staff

Do not trust staff

Do not allow for employee input

3.3 Laissez-faire Style

This is the only style that involves letting people do what they want and make their own decision without telling them what to do. This is normally suitable for teams that perform highly creative works which needs good self-skilled and individual skills as the team will be working with a very little or no supervision at all when it comes to decision making. This can create a highly motivated team however the disadvantage is that since there is no clear line of authority the teams are likely to float from the main objectives.

Also known as the “hands-off¨ style

The manager provides little or no direction and gives staff as much freedom as possible

All authority or power given to the staff and they determine goals, make decisions, and resolve problems on their own

The financial consultant who is there to give advice to the management on financial issues will have to have meeting with the management about the fund required in the implementations of new IS that will make the business being conducted in a modernized way. Any attempt that threatens the job security of the staff is resisted very strongly. This is true of all technological innovations the introduction of which may make several jobs redundant.

5. http://www.skagitwatershed.org/~donclark/leader/leadstl.html (date of access 4th April 2009)

TASK 4

TASK FOUR:

Effective Communication in Antique 2000

Communication refers to the means in which information can be transferred from the source (sender) to destination (receiver).In other words we can say it is a two way communication process.

Communication is a dynamic process…

Through this process we convey a thought or feeling to someone else.

Looking at Antique 2000 scenario, it shows a number of problems that act as barrier to communication process. We need to have a through analysis these problems that Antique 2000 is experiencing; and a report that will shows where there is poor Communication and suggested solution to those problems

Lack of IT skills to use the new System:

One of the important issues to be taken into consideration is the plan of training the Antique 2000 management on how to use the system, this should be included in the project plan in the early stages of development since it will need funds to be allocated for it and this should unmistakably communicated effectively to the management before doing the Implementation. They need to be informed how beneficial is it going to be when it comes to questions from customers with regard to their product present on their websites.

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During the time of conducting this training, the department managers would have to prepare a good schedule of training so that the exercise would not interfere working hours of the company. Employees need to be informed of the importance of attending the training.

The financial consultant who is there to give advice to the management on financial issues will have to have meeting with the management about the fund required in the implementations of new IS that will make the business being conducted in a modernized way. Any attempt that threatens the job security of the staff is resisted very strongly. This is true of all technological innovations the introduction of which may make several jobs redundant.

As we had already seen, the existence of more than one Managing Director with different leadership style shown on the Antique 2000 scenario will create some problem, especially when it comes to the point that the customers need some information regarding the products, it can sometimes become difficult depending on the available person to disseminate the information.

Suggested solution to this problem could be the need to allocate the person who will be ready to provide assistance to customers. Also the introduction of Antique 2000 website will enable a big number of customer to have an access to the list of all products available online hence reduce the problem of ineffective communication since they will have a chance to access the website even after normal working hours

.

Another type of problem which is very common is most website is the ability to display information in a proper way. We expect to have effective communication with the Internet Service Provider who hosted the site for further technical assistance. To make life conveniently to the management, the ISP need to respond very quick if at any time, the support is needed. This issue must be included in the terms of contract to ensure it is done effectively for the good convenience of customers.

6. http://www.translationdirectory.com/articles/article1409.php (date of access 2nd April 2009)

7. http://accurapid.com/Journal/41communication.htm (date of access 4th April 2009)

8. http://www.helium.com/knowledge/59593-effective-communication-for-project-managers

(date of access 6th April 2009)

TASK 5

5.0 Mentoring and Coaching

Mentoring

This process is almost the same as coaching, but the main difference comes from the relationship, whereby a mentor is a very senior staff in an organization and on the other hand, the person who receives guidance is called the Mentees

In implementation of mentoring, sharing knowledge and wisdom is one of the important things needs to be taken into account as this problem have been seen in many organization as sometimes you might find that people who are more experienced with good technical knowledge leave the company, this leave the company with no good mentors!

One of important issue with mentoring is to make sure the mentees are not forced to participate since this will not make the process successful; they need to be willing so as to make them participate effectively. Since it is mainly an internal process, it will also need the involvement of the organization

Despite the advantages and disadvantages, they are both intangible and hence it becomes difficult to weigh them. In this case, advantage could be the increased confidence which is the result of advanced improved skills. And on the other hand, disadvantage could be the negative impression which is the outcome of jealousy, and internal political interest.

Coaching

This is a process which involves the relationship between two people namely coach and coachee who are on the same level in an organization. A coach needs to be a highly trained and certified since he is the one who will be doing the coaching to the coachee. The most crucial key factor for success in this process is the confidentiality as there are times you finds that it retards the development of successful internal coaching relationship.

These two(Coaching and mentoring) are important mechanism to build up a culture since they help shift project thinking, and best practices which at the end of the day, it enables a project management organization to accommodate growth; and increase individual and team satisfaction.

5.1 Possible Areas Where Mentoring and Coaching may be needed

As we have already seen above that the basic aim of Mentoring is to develop the abilities of Mentees. During the staff meetings of Antique 2000, one of the issues that are likely to face them was fearful of change in job responsibilities. Here mentoring is very critical as the Mentor can work closely with the staff and develop the confidence and morale of the demoralized staff, it can focus on the individual and develop his / her current skills to scale up to the expected levels of performance which new IS design and strategy will bring

We expect Mentoring to be a helpful tool to solve non-technical problems at Antique 2000 as most of the staff will be new to the IS environment. They will have to work together so that it will be easier for the Mentor to know the Mentees problems in the system. Since new IS deployment will create a new working environment, the mentee and mentor may have some unexploited resources and knowledge base which can be explored and be utilized and become of use to the whole organization

The common thread uniting all types of coaching & mentoring is that these services offer a vehicle for analysis, reflection and action that ultimately enable the client to achieve success in one more areas of their life or work.

9. http://www.coachingnetwork.org.uk/resourcecentre/WhatAreCoachingAndMentoring.htm#definition

10. http://www.brefigroup.co.uk/coaching/coaching_and_mentoring.html(date of access 4th April 2009)

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