Chat with us, powered by LiveChat Hi folks, we kick off week one with the case study you'll be using for the balance of the class. Read the case carefully; one big difference to take note of in the new Reynolds environment; | WriteDen

Hi folks, we kick off week one with the case study you’ll be using for the balance of the class. Read the case carefully; one big difference to take note of in the new Reynolds environment;

 

Hi folks, we kick off week one with the case study you'll be using for the balance of the class. Read the case carefully; one big difference to take note of in the new Reynolds environment; they have acquired one company, and entered into a joint venture with another. The acquisition requires integration. The joint venture imposes no obligation on either company to change environments, though some work will need to be done to share data effectively.

Be specific in your responses; this is a summary, but management will want to know how these recommendations apply specifically to Reynolds. – Chris

For this assignment, you are assuming the role of senior IT manager. Reynolds Tool & Die has decided on a set of competitive advantages it would like to pursue. The company has asked you to provide a 2-page executive summary outlining how you believe the company can leverage IT to achieve as many of these advantages as possible.

Carefully read the Course Scenario.

Read and complete the Week 1 Assignment Instructions.

Save your executive summary as a Microsoft® Word document.

Format any sources you include according to APA guidelines.

Submit your assignment.

CMGT/578 v12

Week 1 Assignment Instructions

CMGT/578 v12

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Leveraging Technology to Drive Competitive Advantage

Read the course scenario for Reynolds Tool & Die. Based on the scenario, write a 2-page executive summary describing how you, as a senior IT manager, plan to leverage technology to achieve a competitive advantage for the company.

Title

Your paper should start with the title Executive Summary: Leveraging Technology to Achieve Competitive Advantages.

Introduction

An introductory paragraph should include the goal of the summary, which is how IT will leverage technology to achieve a competitive advantage.

Headings

Your headings should include:

I. Competitive Advantages

What are the competitive advantages the business would like to achieve? Don’t choose a lot of topics. Focus on three or four competitive goals. These could include:

i. Lower cost of products or services

ii. Greater internal workflow efficiency

iii. Expansion into new markets

iv. Introduction of a new product or service

v. Company re-organization, which could include creating separate divisions, a merger, or consolidation

II. A Current Assessment of the Internal IT Resources

Topics to address should include:

i. Current hardware, software, and services (third party, outsourcing, etc.)

ii. Suggested changes, upgrades, and additions to the environment

III. The Plan to Leverage Technology to Achieve Competitive Advantage

Be specific when addressing your plan for leveraging technology. A good way to approach this topic will be to merge Headings I & II. For example:

i. Achieving lower costs of products or services might be achieved by upgrading aging data center equipment, virtualizing file servers, and, thus, reducing maintenance expense in the long term.

ii. Investment in workflow software may eliminate time consuming manual processes, thus setting the stage for workforce reduction, which will lead to cost savings.

iii. Updated or new Customer Relationship Software may help in developing new markets.

iv. Updated or new ERP software may help facilitate new and better production techniques.

v. Cloud services could create a more nimble, flexible IT organization, quickly enabling mergers, acquisitions, or consolidations.

IV. Conclusion

Your concluding paragraph should be a brief statement reinforcing your position regarding leveraging technology and briefly summing up the document.

Cover Page and References

Remember, all papers need a cover page. Use at least one other reference for this assignment in addition to the course textbook.

Copyright© 2021 by University of Phoenix. All rights reserved.

Copyright© 2021 by University of Phoenix. All rights reserved.

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CMGT/578 v12

Course Scenario

CMGT/578 v12

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Reynolds Tool & Die

Reynolds Mission Statement

“We are committed to providing our customers quality products with the highest engineering standards.”

Reynolds Vision Statement

“We are committed to achieving our goal of being a market leader for engineering solutions and will investment in technical innovation. Our desire is to continue to expand our markets, our technical competence, and our intellectual curiosity to serve our customers.”

Additional Information

Reynolds Tool & Die is an automotive component manufacturer supplying suspension pieces and technology to both other suppliers and major U.S. and foreign manufacturers. Annual revenue is around $50 million, and the company is profitable.

Reynolds has production facilities at their headquarters in Akron, OH; in Bloomington, IN; and in Memphis, TN. Approximately 300 people work for Reynolds, including 7 in IT. The IT staff is broken down as follows:

· IT Director

· 2 Help Desk personnel

· 3 Network Engineers

· 1 Software Engineer, primarily supporting the company’s ERP system

One network engineer works in Bloomington, one in Memphis, and the rest of the IT staff is located in Akron.

The three sites are networked via an MPLS circuit. In addition to SAP® software, the company uses Microsoft® Office 2010 for administrative work along with several specialized CAD programs for design. The SAP software is two versions behind, but not at end of its life. A data center is in Akron, while the other two sites have smaller hardware footprints consisting of Microsoft Exchange servers for email, a small file and print server, and redundant Active Directory servers. EMC Storage Area Network (SAN) devices are at each site. Redundant backup appliances are in Akron and Bloomington, and data can be cycled among the SANS for further redundancy. While some server virtualization has been achieved, only about 20 percent of all servers have been virtualized with the help of VMWare. All sites use Cisco® switches, routers, and firewalls. Servers, desktops, laptops and printers are all HP®, and are between 3 and 5 years old and the desktops and Laptops use Windows® 7 as the operating system. All servers are on Microsoft Server 2012.

There are no cloud applications. There has been a demand by administrative personnel and engineers for integrating mobile devices with Microsoft Exchange and other apps but to date the company has not implemented a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) or a MDM (Mobile Device Management) solution.

The IT budget typically is between $1.2 and $1.5 million annually, depending on capital expense. Note that this budget ONLY covers hardware, software, services, and licensing. Personnel costs are not included, nor do you need to include them for the Week 4 budget assignment.

This year the company is embarking on significant expansion. A joint venture has been signed with a firm from Mexico Peraltada LLC in order to gain access to a new supplier market. Both companies will remain independent, but Reynolds will exchange engineering expertise for a percentage of sales in Mexico and there will be joint development of intellectual property.

Peraltada uses Microsoft Office 2016 and Oracle as their ERP solution. Desktop and laptops are HP, and they are running Microsoft Server 2016. They employ around 200 people with 5 in IT. The company provides key employees with iPhones for mobile access to their network.

In an effort to diversify, the company has purchased a small company in Vancouver, Canada that makes light aircraft landing gear components. P.T. Tracy, LLC employs about 80 people, with 3 in IT. They also use SAP for an ERP solution but one version newer than Reynolds. They use Microsoft Office 2013 and Windows 10 for their desktop OS. Their firewall solution is Palo Alto and they use Cisco routing and switching equipment. Servers, desktops and laptops are all Dell®. They also have implemented a BYOD policy, using the MDM solution VMWare AirWatch®, supporting both Apple® and Samsung® Galaxy phones. They are running Microsoft Server 2016.

All three companies in the scenario have a Microsoft Enterprise License in various stages of life; none will be up for renewal at the same time.

Copyright© 2021 by University of Phoenix. All rights reserved.

Copyright© 2021 by University of Phoenix. All rights reserved.

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