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  • Level: GCSE
  • Subject: ICT
  • Word count: 3671

Report on an ICT system and how it meets the Organisation's needs

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Report on an ICT system and how it meets the Organisation's needs Marks & Spencers have brought in technology into nearly all aspects of their business. The technology is used to improve the workers and the whole organisation's efficiency, increasing profit. Marks & Spencers use input devices, output devices, processors, storage devices and ports and cables all to help them reach their goals. In this report I will be talking about how Marks & Spencers use them. Input Devices: Symbol LS2208 Laser Barcode Scanner System Specs: I have obtained this from Input Devices: Handheld Terminal The handheld terminal is used in many aspects of Marks & Spencers. It is used for inventory control, asset management, item tracking, maintenance management and other off-line data collection applications. The HHT is easy to use for all the employees and is an efficient way of managing stock. It uses lots of communication technologies which means that when Marks & Spencers buy a new Handheld Terminal they can be sure that it still will work with their system and network. Another reason they can be sure that it will work is because the Handheld Terminal supports many different types of barcode including the main universal ones and the less well known system. If Marks & Spencers were to take over another store then they would probably still be able to use it as they can use the barcode system. This is good as before they may have had to buy a lot more hardware just to operate the new technology. The Handheld Terminal can hold large amounts of information which mean that the workers can go round the shop and record data in large shifts. It means that they don't have to worry about the Handheld Terminal crashing which would cause a lot of time wasting as the employee would have to go around the shop again. The Handheld Terminal is very versatile. ...read more.


This means that Marks and Spencers technicians can set up printers to printer services and other things like this. They can also be sure that the cables wont be too short or that taut wires don't become tripping hazards. The bad thing about parallel cables is that they suffer from signal disorder when the wire is long. This ca be overcome by using a signal booster. This boosts the signal but the signal booster requires another electrical supply and more electricity mean more money. This doesn't meet Marks and Spencers needs as they could easily use a Ethernet cable or networking printing cable. Parallel cables use 25 strands inside the wire and data can be transmitted across all these wires at the same time. This means that they can transmit data quite quickly. It can be even faster if used with the IEEE 1284 compliant device. This means that employees can do what they want quickly and get back to work. This increases speed and profitability. The port that attaches to other devices is very secure. It has thumbscrews to help keep the port secure. This combined with gold plated copper contacts keeps the conductivity which helps stop signal loss. It also helps the cable accidentally being pulled out. This increases speed as technicians don't have to worry about cables being unplugged and also productivity as the increased conductivity means less signal loss. Evaluation Overall the parallel cables meet the needs quite well but the limitation on the length because of the signal length. The method for securing the port is very secure and helps the company in many ways. Parallel cables are actually more expensive than a USB cable and are no more difficult to set up. This means that parallel cable aren't very good and don't meet Marks and Spencers needs very well. Alternatives The parallel wires are not practical enough due to the short distance of the wire length. ...read more.


EPOS can also be linked to a website. It displays the amount of stock for every item. This is very useful as buyers can see if a product has run of stock and don't need to waste time coming into the shop. This helps increase customer happiness. EPOS can also estimate when an item will run out of stock and warn employees to restock. The EPOS system can also be integrated with handheld devices such as the HHT. This helps Marks and Spencers search the shop firsthand and find out information on stock. There are many different packages that the EPOS software can be bought as. This helps the EPOS software be versatile as it can be introduced to the sytem very easily. First of is the stand alone system which comes with a specialised EPOS terminal and other add-ons. You can also buy the software based method which can be installed on to an existing computer. The other products like barcode scanner can be bought separately. Another method is to Outsource EPOS to a third party specialist. This requires a broadband internet connection as the third party will send a secure internet based link to Marks and Spencer's. it is useful as the third party will manage any technical problems. This lowers costs as not as many technicians are needed but will cost more to pay the third party. The last method is for a customised EPOS solution. EPOS software specialist can design and integrate it into the Marks and Spencers system. This is very useful as the process is completely customisable and Marks and Spencers can get the most out of the software this way. This is the most expensive method as prices will usually cost over �10,000 but prices can very depending on how you customize. Evaluation Overall EPOS provides a useful easy to use service. It can do stock management very well and can provide detailed information to Marks and Spencer's. the downside is that the service is quite expensive to buy but with so many options that isn't an issue. ...read more.

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