One of the trends in information systems is achieving competitive advantage through the use of information systems. Competitive advantage is something all companies seek to have. The framework of Porter’s Five Forces may be used to describe the forces that will impact on a company’s competitive advantage (http://hbr.org/hbrg-main/resources/images/article_assets/hbr/0801/R0801E_A.gif).
The business must align their IT with their business objectives by determining how the systems can help them to achieve goals and measure performance. In recent years businesses have realised how information systems can help them achieve lower costs and hence, lower prices by recording transactions and keeping track of inventory so there is less waste and service to customers is provided more quickly. (Essentials of Management Information Systems, Laudon).
Dell has successfully differentiated their product through the use of information systems. They use information systems to customise and personalise their products and this has given them a huge competitive advantage in the area of PCs and laptops.
Amazon is another business that has gained competitive advantage through information systems. They build a strong relationship with their customer by keeping a record of past purchases and this allows them to recommend new products that the customer may be interested in.
Businesses may gain huge competitive advantage through the use of information systems once they align their IT with the business objectives.