The Information Science is the discipline that investigates the properties and behavior of information, the forces that govern the flow and the means to process the information for maximum accessibility and utility. It has a component of pure science research that is not related to its application and a component of applied science, which develops products and services
The Information Management (IM) of helps in increasing the competitiveness of business and organizational processes of modernization from the point of view of planning and strategic use of information and associated technologies , and quality specifications, content and information security in the company.
The importance of the Information Technology is the application of the storage and retrieval of information and its dissemination in the data banks and networks of computers suitable for different systems. Information Society Human conglomerate that, by virtue of technological change, has had its shares of survival and development based on the creation, storage, distribution and intense use of information resources. Every system that using or not the resources of Information Technology , manipulates and generates information can generally be considered Information System.
The term “Information Technology ” is all activity involving information processing and communication through integrated electronic equipment. This term is broader and refers to “all kinds of technology that operates with information, is a system of information, the automation of an industrial process, the communication between two computers organizations, or the personal use of computational resources.Information Technology broadly refers to the resources used by a firm in the processing and management of their data. These resources include hardware, software, communications (voice, data and video) and associated personnel. The information technology is the capabilities offered by computer applications – software – and telecommunications. technologies and applications that combine the processing and data storage with the capacity of transmission distance telecommunications. It presents as the basic components of data processing and / or information and communication through integrated electronic equipment for that.
Information Technology and its Impact
Technology is defined as the set of knowledge, especially scientific and special, which apply to a particular branch of activity, can also be regarded as a science that deals with the technique. Technology is a packet of information organized in different types (scientific, empirical …), from various sources (scientific discoveries, patents, books, manuals, drawings…), obtained by different methods (research, development, copying, intelligence …) and used in the production of goods and services. The author adds that “the knowledge and skills employed in the production of technological packages are the technological capabilities. The growing development and integration of the elements of the IT (hardware, software, communication networks, workstation [CAD, CAM, CIM, etc..], Robotics and intelligent chips) have revolutionized the way to live, to communicate, to think and do business. As information technology is being incorporated into the production system, it will radically alter the structure and the way in which work is performed, particularly with regard to the work of production and coordination Types of Information Technology .
To obtain reference on the possibility of strategic use of IT, it is necessary to know the set that up. It may be considered as the following categories:
a) Technology , hardware;
b) Information systems;
c) Automation of offices;
d) Engineering and design for computer and) industrial automation;
f) Specific features of automation;
g) Multimedia resources.
The systematization of the most relevant set of Information Technology serves as a summary guide to research uses of the main strategic and must be constantly updated as any classification on the Information Technology becomes obsolete quickly, due to the speed of advances in this area . Examples of IT:
a) Technology for the planning of information technology – computer methodologies, modeling data and processes, methodologies for preparation of Master Plan of Information Technology ;
b) Technologies for the development of systems – methodologies for developing systems, methodologies, project management, methods of testing and debugging programs, techniques, systems analysis, technical design of systems, techniques, prototype, technical design of seat data, techniques of programming;
c) Technologies for the support of software – operating systems, systems management database; software processing, utilities, monitors performance, programming language, leading to implementation;
d) Technology on production processes and operations – CFP, capacity planning, performance management;
e) Technologies on hardware support – supercomputers, large-sized computers, networks of computers, local networks, linking micro-mainframe, microcomputers, RISC architecture, and graphic stations.
With knowledge of various types of existing IT, the next step is to understand how they may be used in organizations as a support to organizational strategies.
The Use of Information Technology in Organizations
The rapid changes occurring in the business environment require organizations to adapt and seek new ways to compete and to differentiate from competition. The Information Technology , who is also the core of many of the innovations used by organizations to succeed or even survive. The Information Technology is now used as a tool to promote competitiveness and acquire and / or sustain a competitive advantage against your competitors. This increased strategic use of IT is due to a change in the conception of the role of information in organizations. Until the 1960s, information was often associated with the tasks of design, produces and distributes a producer service. The first information system that was created was a semi-automatic system, called Electronic Accounting Machines (EAM) . In the 1960s, the organization began to recognize that the information could be used to support the management in general. The coming out of the mainframe companies allowed to process data in a centralized manner, and the mainframe became the center of the IT operations of the firm. The Management Information Systems (GIS), was developed for the proposal to increase the speed of reporting required. At that time, the applications of IT targeted the automation of repetitive tasks and decisions of investment in IT in general, were evaluated in terms of cost reduction work The decision for the support system (DSS) and Executive Support Systems (SAE), came to improve and increase the speed of decision-making process of specific managers and executives in a wide range of problems. The minicomputer also boosts the use of IT in firms that had no financial capacity to invest in mainframe The return on investment in IT is related to cost reduction. The computers and communications equipment and personnel are connected to a central data processing.
Users access the data online by consulting a computer terminal or reports. The data center is also responsible for the development of various software that processed and update to users. Also common was the existence of the department of Management Information System (GIS). This department had a team of analysts and programmers who have identified, designed and developed new software to support the activities of the firm. The computer resources are considered tools to support business.
In the mid-1980s, the concept of information has to be a strategic resource, a potential source of competitive advantage and a strategic weapon. The strategic systems appeared to ensure the survival and prosperity of the organization.
The Information Technology has then taken a more inclusive, in which the implementation of business increasingly depends on its application. The introduction of the personal computer (PC) and a proliferation of standards for hardware and software have caused a change in organizations and the role played by IT. As the PC had a lower cost to the mainframe, the managers began to develop individual applications beyond the control of the GIS department, leading to a decentralization of information. These applications would meet the departmental needs. The Information Technology has involved all major divisions of the company, dozens of full-time programmers, consultants and multiple machines (or remote computers linked by telecommunications networks), and perhaps hundreds of end users in the organization that used the same data for various applications. The data, instead of being localized and controlled by the central data processing, have been used by hundreds of employees from their computers, each more powerful than the large computers as half of the 1980s. This system makes the management and institutional changes This new hardware makes the software more powerful, easy to use for beginners. In a few hours, employees can learn respect not able to use a word processor and prepare schemes and applications of telecommunications in a microcomputer. Additionally, you can now, for end users to design their own simple applications and systems without the help of programmers.
In the early 1990s, the IT enabled the transformation of business, acquiring a strategic nature. The evolution of the role of technology is tied to scientific and technological advances in the field of information technology , the pressures of an increasingly competitive environment and changes in the design of strategies for managing the business. There is a growing interdependence between business strategies, roles and procedures, on the one hand, and software, hardware, data and telecommunications, on the other. A change in any of these components often requires changes in other components. The technological advance of microcomputers, the development of communications that carry data, voice, sounds and images, the application of computers and telecommunications to improve products, services and organizations to identify more clearly the profile of the information society.
Today, the Information Technology helps to create and disseminate knowledge and information throughout the organization through new work systems of knowledge, applications, providing access to data throughout the company and communications networks. IT is now seen as key tool to trigger the business and its use becomes a major factor responsible for the success of organizations, whether at the level of survival, is to obtain greater competitiveness. The author puts that in light of this, the dependency of organizations on IT is growing. In light of their growing importance, but also its significant role in raising the competitiveness of the organization, the planning of its use should be part of organizational strategies.
The strategy of using the IT organization must be consistent with its strategy of business. This alignment is to ensure that the allocation of resources for IT projects and provide guidelines for its planning and priorities. However, what we have seen in the course of history is a growing complexity in the task of seeking such affinity.
Main factors contributing to the misalignment between business and IT strategies:
– Pressure from suppliers of technology solutions for business;
– IT management model still stuck to traditional models of information centralized;
– Profile of the professional management of IT;
– IT professionals with a vision too technical;
– Vision of IT and business end rather than means;
– Not consider the IT in the strategic context;
– Divergence in the training of Chief Information Officer (CIO) and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) ;
– Distribution of computing for the end user;
– Promises unfulfilled;
– Disputes for space and power;
– Internal organization;
– Lack of distribution of responsibilities regarding the success / failure of development of IT solutions;
– Low participation of the CEO with the area of IT;
– Lack of harmony between the management of the corporation’s IT and IT management of its business lines;
– Problems of communication as to language;
– Reduction of the group of IT;
– Low commitment of senior leadership in the success / failure of IT solutions, planned;
– CEO’s position on the potential of IT;
– Lack of prioritization of projects by the IT professionals;
– Low capacity for understanding the strategies;
– Problems in the process of reporting strategies;
– High turnover in office of the CIO;
The identification of the use of Information Technology in support of organizational strategies can occur, and often occurs through a process almost intuitive. However, there must be a systematization of this whole process. To facilitate the process of using IT as a strategic resource, some bases should be explored: the concepts of optimal product and process, implementation of vision systems and vision essential to the analysis of problems / systems and the search for innovative solutions, which Technology Information can be used to make the company more competitive, which are fundamental aspects of business strategy can help organize the search of solutions for strategic impact. Considered these issues, managers may be better placed to assess whether their enterprises are ready to use IT as a support to organizational strategies.
The definition of opportunities and competitive advantages with the use of information technology should follow the following steps:
o Understanding of the concepts of competitive forces and strategies;
o Definition of competitive forces critical to the company;
o Definition of strategies that the company adopts;
o Assessing the impact of Information Technology ;
o Definition of the degree of dependence on the company’s Information Technology ;
o Definition of strategic opportunities for Information Technology .
Strategic impacts that IT can create, thus summarized:
a) Causes changes in the organization of the work process (work becomes more abstract, reduction of time and space, providing continuous knowledge of new ways of managing the business);
b) Enables the integration between the various business units of the level of the organization and beyond its borders (virtual production chain). Business competitiveness depends on a good interaction with suppliers and customers, which can also be obtained via IT;
c) Changes the competitive nature of many industries (strategic alliances and cooperative agreements between competitors, in which companies cooperate to share resources and services, gaining competitive advantage);
d) Provides new strategic opportunities for organizations causing an evaluation and redefinition of the mission, the goals, strategies and operations;
e) Require changes in management strategies and organizational structure, assuming changes in organizational culture.
The implementation of technological innovations often requires social-technical changes, which calls for a relatively long time to adapt. This objective is not easy to achieve because individuals resist the change, both to those imposed on an organization as to which employees are subjected to when their work is renovated. This is a major obstacle to strategic transitions. Thus, for this process is successful, it is necessary that those responsible for implementation of Information Technology have a greater understanding of organizational change. Degree of Complexity Management in Information Technology .
The studies in this area it is possible to give the participants act and be understanding of the processes of formulating and implementing policies for the application of information technology administration, to meet the challenges of the state, related to the principles of ethics, equity, social justice and rationality: The professionals involved will become able to:
– Know the potential of information technology in solving problems of management in state organizations.
– Structured information systems.
– Specify a system in the area of information technology .
– Hiring and evaluating service providers in the areas of management and information technology .
The technical profile of the people involved will occur in accordance with the potential to lead to lead processes of change. They should have experience in managing teams or in the conduct of projects of implementation of information technology , knowledge preliminary to access the database, logical quantitative, for challenges and ease of performance and interpersonal relationships. Technology and Information Management In the context of this review the concept of IT aims to be broader in scope, not limited only to hardware, software and data communications.
Based on Etymologically the term technology , there is the difficulty of establishing a total separation between the terms information, information system and technology . The implementation of IT requires a complete reorganization of the function information, which is heavily dependent on human resources particularly considering the capacity of inter-relationship personnel, ability to change and creativity.