In the recent past, technology has increasingly been adopted in organizations. It assists in developing efficiency and thus customer satisfaction. The competitiveness of a business is vested on the quality of its management decisions. A number of systems that aim at meeting a certain objective in the business arena have been developed. They are either home-made or all user systems (commercial systems).
One area that has gained much advocacy from the potential benefits an organization can derive from is data-resources management; data resources management involves using information and communication systems to develop a data warehouse where management can refer when making corporate decisions (Johnson, 2008). This paper discusses the effect that Data resources management has on an organization, it will use Toyota Corporation as the sample company.
Data resources management
Data resources management cannot be given a single definition but it entails a combination of issues and processes. They are intangible assets which are unique to different business and can be improved with experience and information interpolation. The most important factors that are considered are human assets that companies have.
Human beings have different talents and capabilities; however tapping this asset requires strategic operation and management. Other than utilizing the knowledge and experience that the employees have, there is the need to use available information to grow and develop knowledge and expertise in employees.
Information can be internal and external information and how well the information is utilized can result to growth of knowledge; effectiveness, and efficiency in doing business. To effectively utilize information, organizations should move from information hoarding to sharing of information that they are holding for the benefit of others; this is son despite that there are some private information that a company (Singh & Soltani, 2010).
The affect of the specific technology on organizations
With well organized Data resources management, there are numerous advantages that a business is likely to get. The success of a business is dependent on the quality of decisions that managers at different level make.
High quality decision leads to competitive advantage. One of the most critical decisions that managers should make is one that reduces cost of production. Data resources management tools assist a company to develop a cost cutting policy by recognizing areas of inefficiency and rectifying them. With a reduced cost of production, then it can sell at a lower price than its competitors (March & Kim,1988).
For example, city of Albuquerque utilized Data resources management to develop mechanisms to cut down their cell phone bill; they managed overtime and identified areas of inefficiency in their operations. The resultant was saving the city $2 million in a period of three years. Toyota in, Tokyo, Japan recognized that it was double paying its shipment in 2000. The amount that it had already double paid was to the tune of $800,000.
When making decisions, managers need to be informed and have reliable past, current and futurist data. With futuristic decisions, a company is likely to satisfy its current and future customers. When making strategy for a company, there are generally three approaches; cost strategy, differential strategy, and flow strategy.
In a cost strategy a company aims at improving its efficiency to a level that it becomes the least cost producer. In a differential strategy, the business aim at getting unique products that will attract the greatest number of customers and meet their need (Bowditch, Buono & Stewart, 2008).
Data resources management system offers a chance to analyze the treads of customers and thus a business will always be ahead of its customers and competitors in their products. This will eventually give the business an upper hand. Flow strategy is all about establishing a certain area that has un-tapped market then entering the market.
When there is data, a business will always be aware of emerging opportunities in the business world, venture into them after analyzing them using the available data. One of the major hindrances of making the right decision is lack of information; Data resources management assists a company to gauge its level of relationships with suppliers and customers.
The enhanced relationship assists in making decisions that aim at strengthening the relationship and eventually gain customer loyalty. In a well managed Data resources management environment, there is data from other companies in the same industry thus a company can gauge itself with others in same industry more effectively, this will assist in marketing decisions; Marketing strategies are well made if current business position is know (Kumar & Thondikulam, 2006).
Toyota was incorporated in 1937 in Japan by Kiichiro Toyoda; it has grown to be the world number one automobile provider. It assumed the number one automobile producer in 2008 after it surpassed general motors.
The company operates on a five principal policy; Kaizen (continuo’s improvement), teamwork, Challenges, Respect and Genchi Genbutsu (go and see). As long as computerization was developed, the company has continuously adopted technology. Up-to 1999, the company’s IT employees and research analysts used to run reports that took days even weeks to make (Toyota official Website, 2011).
In 2000, cooper, the company’s data manager, accepted a proposal from a staff to acquire Oracle database and Essbase software. They were both developed by Hyperion business-intelligence Company. The same year of implementation, the systems bore fruits; an analysis discovered what can be referred to as an “honest” mistake whereby railcars were scanned twice resulting to billing twice (Key & Tompson, 2009). The tread had continued for a while, but the company had not realized what was going on.
On the other part the billing company had no ill motive but it had not realized what was going on. Immediately the company saved $800,000. With this breakthrough in shipment management a decision to embrace data resources management tools; in 2001, the company decided to deploy a technology expert Mike Burkes; in his word he said that the difference between the old system and the new one is that the new one was able to pinpoint hot spots in the system and give managers room to look for solutions in those areas.
He equated the system to traffic lights, where green represents a good practice; yellow an acceptable one and red, danger. For example, if the system shows that deliveries are not made on time, this is sign of danger (red light) that calls for solution immediately. Using the system the company was able to understand the need of its customer’s as well creating efficiency and cost reduction strategies (Chong Keng-Boon Binshan & Pei-Lee, 2010).
In 2003, Toyotas revenue (sales) was $132 billion shillings. This was $52 billion lower that what general motors’ made in the same period. However, after embracing the efficiency that came with the system and the principle of Kaizen, profits that the company made in 2008 despite world economic crisis was $ 4.2 billion, 0.4 billion higher than its competitor General Motors’.
Today they are using the same system to develop new models in the market in line with the needs of customers. There are some challenges that come with adopting Data resources management, they include risking exposing an organizations strategies, risking reliance on the system for making decisions, and following the recommendations offered by the system without giving it a human thought (Lingling, Jun, Yong & Xiaohui, 2009).
Recommendation on how to mitigate the effects of the technology
The challenges offered by implementing data resources management within an organization can be solved from the onset/preparation stage. At this point the management should ensure they have contracted expatriates to develop the system and create the system in such a manner that feeding and getting information is controlled.
Access should be restricted and certain places like the system servers should only be accessed by few individuals. With a right system, it can have the ability to alert relevant authority in the event of some hampering and assist in making the right decisions (Perrott, 2008).
Data resources management depends with the information that has been fed, the management should ensure that information getting to the system is of high quality and the sources vetted. There is no wisdom in feeding the system with the wrong information and expecting it to assist make effective, quality, and reliable decisions.
With the realization of the benefit that data and information can do in an organization, the segment has been commercialized by some companies but they fail to deliver well researched information (Wang, Hult Ketchen & Ahmed, 2009). Business leaders should ensure they get information from companies of high integrity and ethical standing.
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