Homeworks – Analytics&MIS

HW1. ch 1,2

1) You work for a BMW dealer. How could you use information systems to achieve greater customer satisfaction and closer relations with car owners?

2) Define business process. What might be a business process used at a hospital?

3) You are a top manager at a national movie theater chain.  How can you use information technology to improve profits at your underperforming theaters?  What kind of data would you gather and how would you use it?

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HW2, ch 3

The following questions are based on the B&N case study at the end of Chapter 3.

  1. Use Porter’s competitive forces model to evaluate the impact of the internet on book retail stores like B&N.
  2. How are B&N and the book publishers changing their business models to deal with the internet and e-book technology?
  3. Which of the 4 generic strategies (or any other strategies described in Chapter 3 of your textbook) would you recommend for B&N to be successful? Explain.

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HW 3. ch 4

The advent of the internet has created brand new ethical dilemmas, social issues, and unresolved legal problems. Give an example of such a dilemma, issue or problem for each category below. Explain briefly why it is a complicated matter.

  • intellectual property
  • workplace management
  • privacy
  • crime
  • health

Example: One of the issue related to crime is whether file sharing is a crime or not.  At one point file sharing was legal, now it is illegal to some extent, but the extent is not always known to the public, and the law is not enforced most of the time .  Should anyone go to jail for file sharing? Isn’t the social cost of paying for someone to spend a few months in jail higher than the cost of $0.99 file?    (now use your own example.  if you are aware of a related law, mention it).

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HW4. ch 5

  1. Describe the five technology drivers of the infrastructure evolution. Which do you think has been the most influential in helping us achieve the level of technology we enjoy today?
  2. The textbook described a number of factors one must take into account when determining the total cost of owning and using technology. What factors would you add in order to compute the total cost of technology in your own home?
  3. Based on Nordea case study. How can a company become more sustainable and more profitable at the same time by managing its IT? Describe several changes that Nordea made to achieve this goal.

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HW5. ch 6

Describe the term ‘data mining’.  Using your textbook or search online to find 3 example of companies that analyze big data and use data mining to make business decisions. How do the companies benefit from it?

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HW6. ch7

  1. Describe and explain the idea of “network neutrality.”  What are the potential consequences of moving away from net neutrality?  State your opinion on this issue.

2. The Australian government has published tips for businesses who want to use social networking and social media to reach out to their customers and users. Read the tips below.  Give an example of a situation when a business is hurt by exposure to social media, and explain either how the firm can avoid this type of situation or how it can minimize damages.

Pros of social media. Social media can have the benefits of word of mouth, but on a larger scale and reach a high number of potential customers.

Potential advantages can include:

  • • reduced marketing costs
  • • increased sales
  • • increased traffic to your website
  • • improved ranking on search engines
  • • greater customer engagement
  • • greater access to international markets
  • • opportunity for customer feedback
  • • opportunity to conduct market research about your customers
  • • improved networking opportunities with customers and other businesses.

Cons of social media. Social media may not be suited to every business. If you are unprepared and launch your social media presence without proper planning, you could waste valuable time and money. Some of the possible disadvantages you should be aware of are:

  • • Not having a clear marketing or social media strategy may result in reduced benefits for your business.
  • • Additional resources may be needed to manage your online presence.
  • • Social media is immediate and needs daily monitoring.
  • • If you don’t actively manage your social media presence, you may not see any real benefits.
  • • Greater exposure online has the potential to attract risks. Risks can include negative feedback, information leaks or hacking.

Whatever the risk, preparing your policy and procedures carefully beforehand can help you manage the risks. False or misleading claims made on your social media channels by your business or by a customer can be subject to consumer law. Customer fan posts and testimonials that are misleading or deceptive to other customers, particularly about competitor products/services may result in your business being fined. (Copied from http://www.business.gov.au/business-topics/business-planning/social-media/Pages/pros-and-cons-of-social-media.aspx)

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HW7. ch 8

Suppose you are managing a large business that sells goods and services through an e-commerce website.  The site accepts credit card payments and stores customer information.  List and briefly explain each of the major security threats to  your website.  What might be the potential impact? What can be done to minimize these threats or impacts?

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HW8. ch9

Office Depot sells a wide range of office supplies and services in the US and internationally. The company tries to offer its products at a lower cost than other retailers by using just-in-time replenishment and tight inventory control systems. It uses information from the demand forecasting system and point-of-sale data to restock inventory in its 1,600 stores.

  • a. Explain how these systems help Office Depot minimize costs and any other benefits they provide.
  • b. Identify other supply chain management  applications that would be helpful to Office Depot; explain briefly why.

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HW9. ch 10

Describe briefly each of the six main e-commerce business revenue models, give examples of companies using these models.

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HW10. ch11

The goal of this assignment is to evaluate three different shopping bots (intelligent agents).  Choose any product you may want to purchase online, and visit 3 sites. Evaluate these shopping sites in terms of their ease to use, number of offerings, speed of obtaining information, quality of information offered about the product and the seller, and price selection.  Which site would you use and why? Which product would you select and why?

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HW11. ch. 12

1. Applebee’s: The largest casual dining chain in the world wants to develop menus that are tastier and contain more items that customers want and are willing to pay for. How might information systems help management implement this strategy? What pieces of data would Applebee’s need to collect? What kinds of reports would be useful to help management make decisions on how to improve menus and profitability?

2. Explain why even well-designed information systems do not always help improve a firm’s decision making.

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HW12. ch,. 13-14

  1. (Based on ch13)  Sears Repair Service: Customers purchasing appliances can purchase a 3-year service contract that provides free repair service and parts. When a customer needs to repair a washing machine they call for an appointment up to 2 weeks in advance. An available date and approximate time is given to the caller.  The repairman arrives and diagnoses the problem. If the repair requires a new part, the repairman will replace it if he is carrying it on his truck. If he doesn’t have the part on hand, he must order it from Sears.  If the part is not in stock at Sears, it is ordered from the manufacturer and sent directly to the customer. Sears give the customer an approximate time when the part will arrive. After the part arrives, the customer must call Sears and make another appointment to have the repair technician replace the part. It may take 2 weeks to schedule the first repair visit, another 2 weeks to order and receive the part, and another week to schedule a second repair visit after the part has been received.  What changes could be made to make this process more efficient? How could information systems support these changes? 
  2. (Based on ch14.)

    U.S. Census Bureau signed a $600 million contract with Harris corporation in 2006 to build 500,000 high-tech handheld devices that census takers in the field could use to directly beam population data to headquarters. This potentially would save taxpayers money.   But the Bureau officials still weren’t sure which features they wanted included in the units, they did not specify the testing process to measure the performance of the handheld devices. As the project progressed, 400 change requests were added to the project requirements. Two years and hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars later, the handhelds were far too slow and unreliable to be used for the 2010 U.S. census. What could Census Bureau management and the Harris Corporation have done to prevent this outcome?

  3. Suppose that a manufacturer can produce a part for $10 with a fixed cost $5000. Alternatively, they can contract with a supplier in Asia to purchase the part at a unit cost of $12 which includes transportation. If the anticipated production volume is 1200 units, compute the total costs of manufacturing and outsourcing. What is the best decision? Find the break-even volume and describe the range of volumes for which it is more economical to produce or to outsource.
  4. The Department of Transportation is interested in measuring the average monthly fuel consumption of commuters in NYC. They might sample a group of commuters and collect data on the number of miles driven per day, number of driving days per month, and the fuel economy of cars. Develop a predictive model for calculating the amount of gasoline consumed using the symbols below.  Suppose a commuter drives 30miles round trip to work 20 days each month with a fuel economy 34 mpg.  How many gallons of gasoline are used?
  • G=gallons of fuel used per month
  • m=miles driven per day to work
  • d=number of driving days per month
  • f=fuel economy in miles per gallon.