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Organisations and Information Systems

After analyzing a branch of TK Maxx, the following conclusions have been drawn: The organization has a traditional hierarchical organization but after looking at the information flows, a flat structure is recommended. The current information flows and processes are effective and work well with the nature of the show. The information system is appropriate and meets the business needs as the information produced from the system is generating the required information has proved to be profitable. 1. 1 Introduction The organisation I will be looking at is TK Maxx which is a chain of an American company call TJX.

It offers brand name family clothing, giftware, home fashions, and footwear, at prices 60% below regular department and specialty store prices. I will analyse the way in which the store I work in operates, its organisational structure, the information flows and processes within the store. I will also reflect the suitability and value of the existing information systems. 2. 0 Organisation Structure Analysis “An organisation is a stable, formal social structure that takes resources from the environment and processed them to produce outputs”.

Organisational structure refers to the formal patterns of interactions and co-ordination that enable an organisation to achieve its goals. In

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order for me to study the structure of the store, I need to look at its organisation chart. By identifying the structure I will be able to distinguish formal relationships e. g. number of levels in the hierarchy and the number of managers/supervisors; The diagram above (Figure 1. 1) is the organisation chart for the store. The store’s current structure is a traditional hierarchical organization (tall structure) with many levels of management. The employees in the store are ranked at various levels.

At each stage in the chain, one person has a number of workers directly under them, within their span of control. According to the hierarchical structure, the store should be a centralised store; meaning that the head office (or senior managers) will retain the major responsibilities and power. If we look at TK Maxx in terms of one large organisation, than this theory is applicable. However, if I look at one particular store, than this theory does not apply. The store has implemented a vertical decentralisation; the senior management has handed the power to make certain decisions down the hierarchy of the organisation.

The middle managers have more control and responsibility to make decisions and this is simply because staff lower down the chain have a greater understanding of the environment they work in and the people (customers and colleagues) that they interact with. This knowledge and experience enables them to make more effective decisions than senior managers. 2. 1 Information Flows and Processes The formal information generally flows from higher to lower level. Commands, instructions, plans and delegated tasks are passed down the line management system through supervisors and managers to associates.

There are about 2-3 notice boards in the lounge area as a way of communication between management and staff. Any new promotions, or such information from the head office e. g. new tagging method, new staff etc is informed via these notice boards. There are monthly meetings for which associates are obliged to attend. General issues are discussed in the meeting. The management keeps details of the meeting stored on a computer and the main issues discussed are put up on the notice boards and it is updated after every meeting.

The store uses “Open Door Policy” to ensure that everyone is treated in a fair and equitable manner; the associates have the opportunity to speak openly bring up ideas and any concerns or issues they may have. An associate can talk to their immediate manager, their manager’s manager or a senior manager. Figure 1. 2 shows how the information needs at the three levels vary in terms of information type, its use and the role of the users within the store. Business processes are the ways in which an organisation coordinate and organise activities, information and knowledge in order to produce its products/services.

This particular store does not have a different department for payroll, human resources etc. Everything this is carried out by the management team. The business processes are as follows: * Payroll – there is a “hand punching” system being used which is connected to a system. As soon as an associate comes in for work, he/she has to put their hand on a machine and enter their ID number. Therefore, the process includes identifying the associates, their personal details, rates of pay and calculating employee earnings and tax payments.

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