Week 1 discussion questions

Price: $10 USD

Question description

Please answer the following two questions. 

1) Read the case study: Interactive Session: Management, Meet the New Mobile Workers below and answer What kinds of applications are described in this case? What business functions do they support?

CASE CONTENT: How much of your job can you do from the palm of your hand? Probably more than you think. Today there are many job functions for both rank-and-file employees and their managers that can be performed using mobile phones and tablets, including the iPad, iPhone, and Android mobile devices.

Companies are enhancing their security systems so that mobile users can remotely access corporate systems with confidence. And they are developing more far-reaching applications to take advantage of the stunning mobile and graphic capabilities. Mobile technology is spreading to core work functions, such as marketing materials for pharmaceutical reps, customer account software for service technicians, and apps for farmers to test the quality of cow’s milk.

McClendon’s Select, a Peoria-based organic family-run farm, relies on iPad for each stage of its operation: planting fields, picking crops, filling orders, loading trucks, delivering to restaurants, and selling products at farmers’ markets. Co-owner Sean McClendon uses a wireless camera on his tractor to ensure crop rows are as straight as possible. The mydlinkLite app on his iPad lets him watch the footage as he plows. The farm’s planting manager no longer needs to leave the field to handle the careful record-keeping required to maintain an organic certification. Using her iPad connection to the 3G cellular network, she is able to access the Web-based COG Pro management system to update her records of seed types and where and when they’re planted.

Before McClendon’s went digital, orders were handwritten on a white board, a process that was too time-consuming, error-prone, and costly. Now each employee grabs an iPad when arriving for work in the morning and uses a proprietary app called Picker Entry to generate a list of products to collect in the field based on online orders placed by restaurants and consumers. Using AirPrint technology in the iPad, employees then wirelessly print their orders and head out to the field to pick product. After the employees return from the field, they add inventory that they picked using an iPad. They are able to see all of the restaurants on the screen, tap the restaurant name, and fill the orders right from the iPad.

When employees load those orders on trucks for deliveries, Picker Entry on the iPad replaces a manual process that used to take 30 to 45 minutes. A single tap to the iPad generates a report telling where each box goes on the truck for restaurant deliveries. One of the main reasons restaurants use McClendon’s is because of its order accuracy.

Using handhelds to run the business is not limited to small companies. PepsiCo manufactures and sells brands including Pepsi, Gatorade, Mountain Dew, Tropicana, Quaker, and Frito-Lay worldwide and has nearly 280,000 employees. The company uses a complex web of interlocking distribution systems to move its products from its manufacturing and warehouse facilities onto trucks and then into stores in time to meet customer demand. PepsiCo runs about 17,000 distribution routes each day. The iPhone and iPad help employees of PepsiCo’s North America Beverages division ensure that the right products arrive in the right locations as quickly and efficiently as possible.

In the past, PepsiCo drivers and merchandisers began each day by picking up printed schedules with order quantities and tasks to be performed at each outlet, from unloading cases of soda to setting up new product displays. It was difficult to accommodate last-minute changes in orders because communicating with the delivery drivers was difficult when they were on the road.

PepsiCo North America Beverages created a custom in-house app for the iPhone called Power4Merch, which immediately notifies merchandisers when a driver has arrived at a store. The merchandiser’s iPhone has an electronic timecard, and he can see his schedule, the store details, the account profiles, and everything he needs to know to service the store.

PepsiCo managers use iPads with custom applications to monitor their teams’ performance; pull up pricing, planograms and contracts; and help coordinate deliveries with merchandising. The Manager’s Briefcase app provides territory sales managers with electronic versions of all the paperwork and resources they need to manage their teams, including store audits, employee coaching forms, and automated notifications to merchandisers. A manager can make manpower assignments directly on the iPad. The iPad automatically sends a notification to the merchandiser’s iPhone informing him he has an additional stop to make, for example. In the past, managers had to spend much of their time on the phone, checking email in the office, and checking paperwork. With the iPad, the manager starts and ends his day with his team.

The second iPad app, called SPOTLight, gives managers instant access to their Web-based SharePoint content. They can pull out pricing, display planograms, customer development agreements, or new contracts.

PepsiCo’s iPhone and iPad systems are integrated with its established corporate information systems. The company uses Mobile Device Management from AirWatch to securely deploy and manage its mobile applications and also takes advantage of the built-in security on iPhone and iPad to protect them from unauthorized access.

PepsiCo’s main competitor, beverage-bottling company Coca-Cola Enterprises Inc. (CCE) is benefiting from mobile technology as well. CCE uses mobile field service software from ServiceMax Inc. to streamline the work activities of its technicians, who service restaurant soda fountains and fix vending machines.Previously, after a technician visited a customer on site, he would go back to his car, transfer information from paper notes into a database on his laptop, and transmit it to Coca-Cola’s aging centralized software system. Many technicians spent an extra half hour at the end of each day polishing their paperwork.

In 2012, about 100 CCE employees started using ServiceMax apps on iPhones to dispatch technicians to a day’s worth of service calls, provide detailed customer information, automatically update lists of service parts stored in their vans, and transfer information to the billing department. The new system cut administration time for service technicians by a third, and employees were freed up to service other companies’ equipment in addition to CCE’s own. ServiceMax charges about $1000 per person per year for a subscription.

2) Professional sports is a huge money maker. How does technology support this? Research this topic in the DeVry online Library, and please include the links to where you found the information that you are discussing. Some ideas to get you started include high-tech stadiums, RFID on players, social media, and big data.

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