In today’s business environment, technology is critical for all business processes. This is because it aligns different organizational functions as a unit to achieve organizational goals. It is however imperative to consider that implementation of technology alone is not sufficient to address organizational issues. The business processes, IT infrastructure, and strategy and organizational goals have to be aligned to achieve optimum results.
This paper seeks to address fundamental requirements of a system such as preliminary investigation, system analysis, design and implementation in order to provide suitable recommendations to the client. The client is facing challenges in handling employee attendance, productivity, leave schedule, and sick leave. Access to information is thus a general problem facing the organization. The preliminary investigation, system analysis and design and implementation thus provide fundamental guidance for making an informed decision about the best technological solution for the client. The recommended technology is based on an analysis of the core issues and the expected system functionality.
The preliminary investigation seeks to find the organization’s core problems and their genesis. This step is imperative because it helps in making a decision on the right system as well as understanding the foundational problems of the organization. In this case, the client’s issues are going to be analyzed based on a number of questions that analyze the extent of information pooling.
Fundamental questions to be asked in this case include; what type of information handling mechanism does the company use? How efficient is information acquisition in the company? Does the company utilize a new information storage system or does it use a traditional filing system? Is information accessibility possible remotely? If not possible, which department of the organization provides such information when needed? These questions form the basis of addressing the core organizational problems that the client’s company faces.
System analysis is an imperative process because it provides the foundational basis on which a system can be analyzed in light of organizational needs. The approach that will be used in system analysis will include a definition of the scope, analysis of the problem, the requirements, logical design and lastly analysis of the decisions. Based on the preliminary findings, the core problems of the client are information organization and retrieval (Curtis, 2008, p.26). It is thus essential for the proposed system to allow information management, retrieval and analysis. The core issue that the system should address is information organization and retrieval.
Design and implementation
Design and implementation focus on the primary needs of the system for it to work efficiently and thus address organizational goals. There are several system design considerations that should be ensured in a system. These considerations form the core basis of the functionality of the system in a real-world situation as explained below.
A system designed ought to be compatible with other common computer applications to allow interoperability. The system must also be compatible with all operating systems such as LINUX, UNIX, Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7 among others to allow the smooth running of organizational functions. It should also be compatible with an older versions or new version of the same product in order to avoid information loss in case of system upgrade (Curtis, 2008, p.27).
This is an important system feature because the system must undergo some customization or modification in its lifetime. It is this required that the system functions are not impaired upon customization of its architecture.
Tolerance to faults
The system should be in a position to successfully recover form an error caused by either software or hardware failure. This allows for recovery of important information that was being processed before the system failed.
A good system should be easy to maintain through manual or online system update and continue to work effectively. The system should not be impaired by any modification as this will cause system inefficiency.
Since a system is made up of different independent software components, each separate software system should be able to work effectively independently in order to ensure that it also works effectively when incorporated into the system.
An effective system ought to be reliable and be in a position to perform different tasks under varied conditions without failing. It should also be in a position to perform its primary functions throughout its lifetime.
The system user interface should be easy to learn, most good systems maintain similar platforms as other common computer applications in order to reduce learning time.
A good system should also be in a position to effectively tolerate invalid input without affecting its core functions. It should also be able to work under low volatile memory that some old machines may present.
Any organizational system should be secure in order to effectively serve its functions; if a system is insecure the other important features of the system will be of less importance since the system core functions can be impaired. This is thus the last but the most foundational consideration when designing or implementing a system (Curtis, 2008, p.25).
The implementation process can only be possible if the above mentioned design considerations are met.
Proposed right technology
Based on the preliminary investigation, system analysis, design and implementation, the proposed right technology for the client is Executive HR-HRM system made by ThornSoft. The rationales for this recommendation are based on these Executive-HR features.
- It allows grading of jobs based on recommendations and remunerations.
- It captures important organization information and important forth coming events.
- It manages company’s policies for easy retrieval.
- It manages security concerns of the organization by creating accessibility of information hierarchy.
- It has all prompts required.
This feature is responsible for employee information management which includes:
- Names, gender, employment dates and pay details among others.
- Employee academic history as well as major achievements.
- It describes the responsibilities of employees.
- It issues notices on retirements that are due.
Management of leave
- It informs of forthcoming leaves, leaves planned and leaves on progress.
- It enables application for leaves remotely by employees.
- It allows easy approval of leaves by the management.
- It enhances tracking of employees on leave.
- It prompts for all public holidays.
- It keeps notices of employee absence and remedial actions that can be taken to recover the leave time.
- It allows encashment of leaves through payment of leave days to employees.
Management of disciplinary measures
It captures disciplinary issues, their nature such as misconduct or below average employee performance and recommends of actions such as caution, suspension and firing.
- It captures of continuing disciplinary cases.
- It stores actions taken and appeals.
- It also stores disciplinary documents such as dismissal letters, warning letters and so forth.
Management of appraisal
- It stores forms for appraisal online and allows easy printing.
- The system also highlights the major objectives of different positions in the company.
- It also explains key performance indicators and the targets that ought to be met.
- It plans for appraisal depending on the organizations, quarterly or annually.
- Appraisal of employee process.
Management of training process
- It arranges training time table.
- It provides training calendar.
- It captures and maintains training profile.
- It organizes training status of employees based on their participation.
- It reviews employee’s participation.
The key benefits of the proposed system are that it harmonizes and make information accessibility much possible as compared to other HR systems. It also ensures the security of information through provisions of access level hierarchy and thus creating convenience for both the management and the employees.
The major challenges of the client such as determining employee lateness, productivity, leave schedule and sick schedule will also be addressed effectively with the system. In essence, the system provides systematic monitoring of employees job progress, issues about employees and their major achievements in order for the management to perform fair reward or corrective measures to address issues.
Some of the key challenges of the technology include the implementation process. This will require a manual transfer of company’s information from their primary sources to the new system. Some of important company’s information may be lost or compromised in the transfer process. The company’s Local Area Network (LAN system) may be inefficient and hence requiring a restructuring process before the implementation of the new system is done because the information needs to be accessed in all areas of the organization. The cost of the implementation process may be one of the major challenges because it requires purchasing and complying with user licence requirements as long as the company uses the system.
Major success factors are the efficiency that will be achieved once the system is set up. The retrieval and harmonization of organization’s information will provide major breakthrough in terms of service delivery and general management of the organization. The productivity of the employees will be closely managed while their information such as leave schedule will be at their disposal in their personal computers and remote connection via a Virtual Local Area Network (VLAN protocol). This will ease the management task and thus giving them more time to concentrate on the core objectives of the organization.
This paper has focused on major issues that should be addressed to ensure a smooth and effective system implementation. Preliminary investigation, system analysis, design and implementation are some of key considerations that were taken in order to recommend the right technology to the client. The right technology for the client was thus chosen as Executive HR-HRM system from ThornSoft. The major rationale for this choice was based on its functionality in terms of information harmonization and easy retrieval process. Apart from solving the client’s challenges the system also provides other imperative features essential for smooth running of the organization. These recommendations are of profound effect if well implemented as recommended.
Curtis, G. and Cobham, D. (2008) Business Information Systems: Analysis, Design and Practice. New York, Pearson Education. PP. 23-34.