Technology Implementation Paper Pete Martinez University of Phoenix Technology Implementation Paper With today’s economy being in such disarray, companies are entertaining ways to cut expenses and stay competitive during a recession. Many companies are looking at their departments’ productivity in addition to their network infrastructure to accomplish this task. Large companies have the luxury of internal resources, whereas smaller companies must resort to outsourcing this process. The ultimate goal is the same, to cut expenses, and stay competitive.
A big decision, a company will need to make, is whether to cut personnel or can implementing new technology give the same result. The final decision will not be easy, but a bad unrealistic goal can devastate a company. The process to get the task done is to first make a plan, then implement the plan, determine all training requirements and finally determine the support strategy. The first phase is for the company to prepare a plan. The plan should include an evaluation of the company’s business practices. From the evaluation, the company can conclude; the impact affects how to implement the plan and what kind of support is required.
The analysis of the results will give the company’s upper management enough information to make a wise decision. According to an article, by Massaro (2009) stresses some key points when evaluating one’s business and implement changes to improve the bottom line. The article points out that the process should thoroughly review the business process and reinvent the business if necessary. The company should have an open mind especially to new business principles (Massaro, 2009). The article does mention that the main goal is to evaluate the business and avoid being part of the problem.
The article by Massaro (2009) emphasizes that during the evaluation process the company should not consider cutting the marketing budget that will result in loss of customer base. The company’s project plan decision is to implement new technology into the company’s business strategy instead of cutting the workforce. The second phase is implementation. The implementation process should make every effort to avoid interruption of the company’s day-to-day operation. Any interruption will result in loss of customers and profits.
The bottom line is to ensure the company’s automation and network stays secure and operational at the optimal performance, which equals increased productivity. The expense of purchasing computers and service downtime will result in lost revenue and data. A sound implementation plan is crucial. An inadequate plan and limited resources have contributed to new technology implementation failure. During the implementation phase, the company’s management plays an important role. The management must understand the new system, for the new technology is not the fix all solution.
The company needs to understand the implementation process will affect all facets of the business process. The process may require changes to the training program, helpdesk processes, supplier’s interaction, and interested stakeholders relationship. The management must understand the rationale behind the new technology implementation. Communicate these understanding to all concerned parties (Carcone, 2008). Embarking on an all-inclusive assessment of the company’s business practices and when necessary, begin to develop and introduce new policies and procedures before fine-tuning the system to meet the agreed upon requirements (Carcone, 2008).
For the company and their workforce must embrace the intricacy and elasticity of the new technology. The ultimate goal is to start the implementation phase at the top and in stages work in the remainder of the company. The best practice is to introduce the new technology in stages and have milestones build in to ensure the process is on track. Third phase is the training phase. The training phase involves the training of the company’s workforce. The training package should outline the different stages and expectation during each stage. Milestones are a good measuring tool to stay focused on the ultimate goal.
Many companies are outsourcing this requirement to save costs. The training phase should start with the upper management and focusing on how the new technology will influence the business strategy. The training package should address concerns identified during the evaluation phase. The concerns and recommendations should come from the managers, but the users are assets to the process. After all, the users are the individuals who will ultimately be using the technology. Success or failure will depend upon the confidence of both the users and customers.
The training package should depict the methods and techniques affecting the use and upkeep of the new technology to ensure success. Part of the package should address how the staff and workforce will receive training. The training schedule should reflect the dates and time of the training sessions and who will attend. The key point is for the trainees to understand that everything else stops and all focus is on the training. The training tailored and geared to the strengths and weaknesses of the individual attending the training. The human resources department can assist and conduct the evaluation of each individual.
Pre-test method is an alternative to obtain a true evaluation of the mass workforce strength and weaknesses. The younger generation will learn more rapidly compared to the older generation. Training Material should use language tailored to the skill level of the majority of the group. The final phase is the support plan strategies. Companies are spending large amounts of money evaluating their business, creating a realistic plan, and then implementing the technology into their program. Outsourcing is one way of accomplishing the whole process.
However, after the technology is in place and the workforce trained, the organization still needs to spend money supporting their investment. The training and support package is a vital part of the process. Companies need to address their technology support plan in their company’s business strategy. The support plan either can be a company’s internal support or consider outsourcing. The company will need to make a hard decision concerning the short or long-range plan. Companies will need to weigh the benefits of the two methods. The upper management is the key player in the process.
Part of the support plan should include implementing awareness of the desired goal. Change, often met with skepticism and rarely accepted without resistance will come easier with understanding. Employees will learn new procedures and processes more willingly if they can see the benefits realized with the new technology. In an article by Vahle and Begg (2008), lays out a plan, which companies can use to meet the support plan requirement. The plan should address the roles and responsibilities of the helpdesk personnel and the operating hours. The company will have to decide how much of their limited budget will be spend n this service. This decision is more difficult for small business due to the limited budget. The program should address the data recovery process. Loss of data or security of the data is expensive, but outsourcing seems to be the trend used by most of the companies. In the article by Vahle and Begg (2008), points out that without help desk service in place, companies cannot support their workforce and customers after implementations of new technology and take a chance losing customer base and revenue. In conclusion, during the recession companies are getting creative.
Staying competitive, is forcing many companies to focus on how they do business. New technology is one way to stay competitive. Cutting the workforce or marking budget is not a recommended step. Large companies have the luxury of using their internal resources, whereas smaller companies must resort to outsourcing, but the ultimate goal is the same, to cut expenses, and stay competitive. An unrealistic goal can devastate a company. The process is simple first create a plan, then implement the plan, determine all training requirements and finally determine the support strategy.
Management involvement is a crucial part of any plan involving change. For the company’s ultimately goal is to get the best product for their money and build a stronger bigger customer base. Hard decisions come with the job but an educated upper management can ensure the implementation plan success. Embarking on an all-inclusive assessment of the company’s business practices requires a bigger budget, but outsourcing may level the playing field. An efficient training program and support plan will ensure future growth by keeping their business strategy flexible to change.
For the company that can stay current and build a bigger customer base with limited funds will see the benefits at the end. References George Vahle and Don Begg (2008), Building an information Technology strategy for your small business, retrieved October 20, 2009, http://www. theitpros. net/white_papers. asp? itemid=28&submit=getrecord&recordid=2 Paul C. Clark (2003), the security plan: effectively teaching how to write one, retrieved February 28, 2009, http://www. sans. org/reading_room/whitepapers/auditing/security_program_manage