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The Value of Information : Hotels

9 Mar

Well it’s hard to believe we have reached that time already- my last blog. For my last one I’m going to explore the industry of tourism and how IT developments give hotels valuable information to increase profits and improve service.An ever-growing method of information is social networking such as Facebook and twitter.

Take facbook for example. Through this hotels can set up their own page and add customers. When they become ‘friends’ with these customers or if the customers ‘like’ the page they have access to their pages where they can gain valuable information about what type of people they are. From this the hotel companies can then create a marketing plan suited to those people and target them directly. This is very valuable information that previously would have been difficult and expensive to get. An article from Hotelogix.com writes “Social networking portals like Facebook, Twitter etc. are increasingly playing a dominant role in strategies of hotels all over. User generated feedback’s and reviews on such websites play a huge role in popularizing the services of hotels by word of mouth. Further, it also becomes easier to stay in touch with and maintain relationships with ex-clients by making use of online tools.” This reveals the positive effects and developments that can stem from it.

However there are also many other ways hotels use IT to gain and manage important technology. Some of these are evident from a case study regarding the impact of IT on Hilton Hotels. One of the early developments which started in the 1990’s. The technology would link information of all Hilton hotels – It was named onQ. The case study states “Top level management recognized that, to continue growth, increase profitability, and foster customer loyalty, a better, and common, IT system was needed. OnQ integrates all the back office operations, as well as providing the front desk with the guest’s customer profile. The guest profile includes recent stays and reports of any problems the customer reported.” This information lets the receptionist know what their previous stay was like and how they can work to improve this one. It makes the customer feel more valued and welcomed. The reception staff can greet the staff by name and offer to book treatments, extra requirements etc. that they had on their previous stay. Also through the technology the customer receives an email from the hotel several days prior to their stay and a survey following their stay. From this they can identify possible flaws and needed improvements. I have attached a short clip on the onQ technology used by the Hilton hotels. It is a brief clip but it states what the essence of onQ is.

So I hope you have enjoyed my blogs and that I have helped your understanding of the value of information. Even though the blog is finished, I hope these entries will be of help to you when preparing for the summer exam. I want to thank all of you bloggers and my teammates for your contribution on the various IS topics.

Thanks again!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=AsHNZPkHroQ

References: images: http://www.kaba.com/media/319652/v1/resized531x-1/hotel-08-023.jpg

http://www.comtranslations.com/translation-blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/Hotel-Reception.jpg

References text: http://www.hotelogix.com/blog/2011/09/08/role-of-technology-and-internet-in-present-day-hotel-industry/

Case Study : Impact of IT on Hotel Industry and Hilton Hotel Corporation By Michael L. Schwartz. Available at : http://www.google.ie/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&frm=1&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CCsQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.positiveconcepts.biz%2Fpdfs%2FImpact%2520of%2520IT.pdf&ei=oMI7UZiPKfOw7AbTkoDACQ&usg=AFQjCNGzjmu8-vEyMSL7ieUzXSA5Ui9tHQ&bvm=bv.43287494,d.ZG4

Value of Information: Restaurants

8 Mar

In my last blog I wrote about the value of information in the health industry and how technology has improved their quality of work. In this blog I will write about information technology in the fast paced industry of food. These interesting progressions provide for a new working environment for staff.

Today’s customers are more demanding than ever: they want quicker service, higher quality and good prices. Information technology has helped companies reach these demands and provide better products and service. According to an article by foodtechie.com “For restaurants, the incorporation of technology can be seen in the use of drive thru technology, intelligent kiosks, digital and interactive advertisements and menu, wireless and Bluetooth technology, self-ordering systems, automated and kitchen systems”. These technologies allow the restaurants to be more efficient as they have better information and staff can do their roles quicker. It also improves their competiveness. Self ordering is also an up and coming development in technology. This is carried out through touch screens at the tables and sends the orders to the kitchen through Bluetooth ordering technology.

“E-payments and kiosks where customers can search for information about products, place and order, and pay with credit card or using the kiosk itself” is also available. Another popular development in restaurants is the introduction of waiters using handheld wireless ordering systems. There was an interesting case study carried out by Motorala focusing on this development. According to an article on EzineMark.com “The case study focuses on Sam’s Chowder House in the San Francisco bay area, a high volume seafood restaurant that seats about 280 people. According to the study, the restaurant achieved a return on investment on the hand-held devices in one month. That’s because check averages went up and table turnover times and labour costs went down.” This reveals the value of having such information technology for a restaurant. Waiters don’t have to take down orders with pen and paper anymore. They don’t have to go to the kitchen to drop in the order. The staff can focus on giving excellent service instead or rushing orders into the kitchen and after into the payment system. “Staff turnover rates have plummeted since the introduction of the handheld ordering devices as a result. Finally, these devices can also process credit cards, allowing servers to run customer checks while standing tableside, further improving turnover times and customer service”. These IT improvements are massively valuable to these businesses. It saves time, gives them information regarding their customers’ demands and enables them to be more efficient.

This is a clip explaining the wireless ordering system (sorry about the commentary’s annoying tone of voice though! ha)

References: Images: http://www.avfc.co.uk/javaImages/57/8a/0,,10265~11700823,00.jpg

http://www.uniwell.co.uk/images/pictures/photos/products/orderman/orderman-2.jpg

text: http://server.ezinemark.com/a-case-study-in-wireless-ordering-system-for-restaurant-servers-4eec780b3dd.html

http://www.foodtechie.com/2008/12/information-technology-in-food-industry.html

 

The value of Information : Health

7 Mar

At this stage from my own and my teammate’s blogs we have learned what information is and why it is valuable. However to take our learning experience to the next step, it is important to investigate some interesting everyday examples where the value of information is clearly evident. I will explore some of these examples in this and indeed my next blog entries.

Information is essential in the health industry. Health is important to everyone and when our health is at risk we want the information that will tell us what the problem is. Take for example someone who finds a small bump on their arm. On closer inspection they see that it is a tick. The individual then thinks about how they will remove the tick. This information is available to them from a doctor or indeed online. But what if such information was not available. How would they know what to do? Or what risks they may face? Well this is just a simple example of why information is important to us when it comes to our health. But in the health care industry itself information is much more serious and critically needed. Information technology allows them to be more efficient and more decisive as it gives them medical information when and wherever they need it.

According to an article from AMEinfo.com “Recent advances in IT are enabling providers to improve the quality of patient care. Today’s healthcare IT is much more than traditional isolated computers and unfriendly applications. Increasingly, patient care is exploiting the new tools and information that systems can provide, while maintaining a patient-centric approach to their use.” This clearly shows the improvements information technology can have on the running of hospitals etc. They invest in the technology as they want to provide the best possible care to the individual. This high standard of care is something that many of us will need at some stage in our lives. This has driven the emergence, and growing sophistication of the Electronic Medical Record, (EMR). “This digital record can hold the full details of an individual’s medical history, which ultimately helps to direct diagnostic and therapeutic decisions when a patient enters the healthcare system.” Such a device will save time and thus lives.
With the continued developments of IT in the health industry, patients will experience better care. Without the doctors we are vulnerable and without the proper information the doctors are just as weak and vulnerable.

Thanks for reading!

Below I have included a link to a  little  humorous clip on EMR.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NleWPN6CADE&feature=player_detailpage  (copyright Steven Mussey ,2008)

References: image: http://www.nhslocal.nhs.uk/sites/default/files/imagecache/node_large/node_images/health-keyboard_1.jpg

quote: AMEOinfo (2008)  http://www.ameinfo.com/155680-more2.html

Getting the correct information

28 Feb

we all know the importance of information but first it is essential to get the right information. In this post I will give an introduction into the processes of getting valuable information. Hares and Royle 1994 state: “Whatever technique is used to value an investment the vital first step is to collect the right information. This entails knowing: what information to include and, just as important, what not to include; whether the information is accurate. This reveals to necessity of knowing what to do and what information is actually needed. Spending money and time on unrelated information is a waste and serves of benefit to nobody.

According to Hares and Royle there are three points to gathering information which if done correctly will result in high quality information collected and will save time and money as irrelevant information will not be gathered. These 3 points are:

1. Identifying the costs and benefits that matter. The idea is that you will avoid wasting time on data that is of no relevance or use to you. What needs to be asked is what information do I actually need to gather?

2. Evaluating those costs and benefits which are relevant to the investment decision. These costs and benefits however can be hard to predict. There are useful ways of predicting them though.

3. Monitoring the costs and benefits continuously. It is important that you pay attention to the costs and benefits of the information as they may change or new knowledge may come to light- check whether or not the information collected and decisions made were definitely the right ones.

In my next post I will elaborate on this topic further.
Thanks!

Reference: Hares & Royle, 1994. Measuring the Value of Information Technology.

Image Links : http://socialclimber.files.wordpress.com/2013/01/8863-ppp_prd_109_3d_people-information_53f762b4.png

http://bcn.boulder.co.us/basin/data/info/DETECTIV.GIF

 

 

Information In Business Today

18 Feb

Image 

We can all see the developments in information technology all around us. Today I am going to focus on the value of information to business and how developments have benefited firms greatly.

 The main benefit of information is increased efficiency. Being efficient is essential for businesses to survive and compete in these current times. With the use of information technology businesses can use automatic machines and computers to perform processes which are usually done by people and are boring to do. These processes can include “service desk call logging, file archiving, or customer records management”. With the introduction of information technology these jobs can be done much faster and most importantly more accurately.

Image 

When such technology in introduced it leaves us humans more time to make important decisions, develop business connections with people, developing business ideas and deal with customers personally. This improves businesses and gives them an impressive advantage. For a company who still has employees performing the processes which computers can do, it may appear to the customer that they are seen as less of importance as they may not have the same time as an efficient business to give excellent customer service(something that only a human being can do effectively!).

Information is massively valuable to any business manager. By having good access to information they can make better more informed business decisions. Through information technology they are capable of keeping years of data regarding finances and customers. This information then allows them to clearly see areas where the business may need changing and make decisions based on that. By being up to date they are able to deal with any major or sudden changes in the business world which could potentially harm the business. This in itself shows just how valuable information can be if it is obtained and used properly.

image links: http://artpetty.com/tag/making-decisions/

http://rikowski.files.wordpress.com/2012/06/it-15.jpg

Reference:Complete IT Professional, 2012,[online] Advantages Of Information Technology In Business. Available at: http://www.completeitprofessional.com/industry/advantages-of-information-technology-in-business/

The Value Of Information

5 Feb

Information

In order to appreciate the value of information it is vital to understand what information is. Information is basically data that has been processed into a form that makes sense to the receiver (Davis & Olsen, 1985).
If this process does not occur then you have ‘data’ which is raw facts and of no real use to the recipient.

The clip attached will give a brief practical example of the meaning of ‘information’.
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The information helps the receiver in some way. For example a business can use it to improve its operations and to make better decisions. I will explore this in my future posts. The value of information is directly linked to how it helps decision makers achieve their organizations goals (Stair & Reynolds, 2010). However if the information is not relevant, not accurate, too complicated and not delivered to the decision maker on time, it won't have much value for the organisation. Also producing information can be costly and the decision makers should compare the value of information to the cost of producing it (Stair & Reynolds, 2010).

I intend to elabourate on this topic week by week and hopefully aid your understanding.
Thanks

References:
Stair & Reynolds, 2010. Principles of information systems: 9th edition.
Davis & Olsen , 1985. Management information systems: conceptual foundations, structure and development: 2nd edition.

Picture: http://whs.moodledo.co.uk/file.php/4891/Images/Information.png
video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WytNkw1xOIc

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