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E-Business Strategy. The case study is focussed on a company that manufacture, maintain, service, and support scientific equipment. The company has a well established IT infrastructure and have recently recruited an IT Director in order to further deve

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Introduction

Masters in Business Administration P/T E-business Strategy: Case study Date: 19/01/2011 Page Count: 4,037 Word Count: ~3,510 [with exclusions] TABLE OF CONTENTS 1. ABSTRACT 3 2. A: E-BUSINESS STRATEGY & ANALYSIS 4 3. Introduction 4 4. Application of Analytical Tools 5 5. SWOT Analysis 5 6. Ansoff's Matrix 6 7. Value Chain Analysis 8 8. McFarlan's Strategic Grid 10 9. PEST Analysis 11 10. Proposed E-business Strategy 13 11. E-Business - Strategic Objectives 13 12. E-business - Strategic definition 13 13. B: CRITICAL SUCCESS FACTORS 15 14. C: PROCESS ANALYSIS 18 15. REFERENCES 23 ABSTRACT This assignment will evaluate the case study provided in the assessment with respect to E-business. The case study is focussed on a company that manufacture, maintain, service, and support scientific equipment. The company has a well established IT infrastructure and have recently recruited an IT Director in order to further develop the company. The IT Director, Andrew Oakes, has presented his vision of ICT for the company emphasising a need for a suitable e-business strategy, and integrated infrastructure, investments, education and training. The study of this company will evaluate the following areas as detailed in the A: E-BUSINESS STRATEGY & ANALYSIS Introduction The intention of this task it to establish an effective E-business strategy for the company referenced in the case study. Conducting analysis specific to the company aids the planning and construction of the e-business strategy. The analysis will follow the concept suggested by Jelassi & Enders in which consideration will be given in the analysis for both internal and external factors. (2008, p.39) From 'external analysis' we can gain an understanding of change and development externally that may have an impact on the companies e-business strategy which Jelassi & Enders suggest includes "technological change, economic developments or societal change." (2008, p.39) The intention of the 'Internal analysis' is to look at what capabilities and key resources the company has such as finance, brand, quality and reputation in order to be able to not only implement a specific e-business strategy but also to sustain it. ...read more.

Middle

Adoption of transactional e-commerce is noted by authors to offer many benefits. Buyers tend to grow familiar with a companies web interface and once established tend to prefer not to integrate a competitors system with its own. (Porter, M, 2008, p.107). Porter (2008) argues e-commerce allows companies to monitor customers purchasing patterns and behaviour allowing them to provide more "tailored offerings" to the customer as well as improved service and "greater purchasing convenience." (Porter, 2008, p.107). Additional benefits like better integration of suppliers, lower transaction costs, improved market understanding and expanded geographical coverage may also be attained. (Damanpour, 2001, p.18). Analysis carried out using McFarlans Strategic grid, SWOT analysis and Ansoff's Matrix all imply that the company should adopt transactional e-commerce. This may include the sale of standard equipment, the ability to purchase spares and accessories as well as order service calls online. As identified in the PEST analysis the company should carry out research into various regulations with respect to e-commerce of the countries they intend to do business with. Most governments are proactively encouraging e-business within their country. Many support this by providing the necessary infrastructure as well as policies, training and skills development, regulatory frameworks and legislation (Chaffey, 2007, p.187). Consideration should be given to transaction security and privacy. Also taxation within trading countries varies as do standards regulating saleable items as well as statutory rights. A strategic alliance can assist in the move to transactional e-commerce and visa versa. Most companies in operation in the current economic climate do not have the "capacity or resource to grow without help from other aligned partners" (Bidgoli, H, 2004, p.340). Forming partnerships globally can not only increase sales channels but also bring outside influence to spark innovation and creativity. Both of which are required in order for the company to replenish their dated product range. Consideration should be given to development costs, patents, copyright and intellectual property rights not only in the country of manufacture but also in the country of sale. ...read more.

Conclusion

are unavailable in home markets � Fast delivery � More advanced technologies � More competition However, Koslow, also advises their may be difficulties in sourcing within a foreign country. (Koslow, 1996, p.53) Problems such as: � Evaluating and selecting suppliers � Quality (control and assessment) � Delivery (local transport systems) � Labour issues (Reliability of suppliers workforce) � Regulatory issues such as ROSH and WEEE compliance. Warehousing and storage regulations may differ in other countries limiting the amount of commodities can be stored and restricting the use and storage of dangerous and harmful substances. Sales & Servicing: The company should initially decide if they plan to sell goods domestically or manufacture for export, or both. Also will they recruit national personnel from the host country to sell or utilise the sales team from the home country? If using the sales team from their home country it is critical that they understand language and terminology specific to the industry as well as local culture and business ethics. Bradley, (2004, p.367) suggests that there are many advantages to hiring a sales team from the host country since they often already have extensive market and cultural knowledge. As well as potentially being less expensive than the sales team from the home country they will likely have the relevant language skills and familiarity with local business customs. Adversely, they may not have the relevant product knowledge or an understanding of the company and its culture. The company should maintain a low cost position which Porter suggests is the best strategy to secure sales. Porter also argues companies within a group can often gain a cost advantage over global competitors since they "potentially gain experience by sharing improvements among plants, even if production is not centralised but takes place in each national market." (1998, p.279) Customer feedback is essential to allow the company to improve and develop products and services, therefore a robust system should be implemented. An interactive website can play a prominent part as a feedback mechanism. ...read more.

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