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Course Number: GRADUATE IS535, Spring 2010

College/University: Keller Graduate School...

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Business Plan Healthlite Yogurt Co. Danbury, Connecticut BY OTGONJARGAL SYED AZAM Table of Contents I. Abstract. II. Overview III. Analysis of the problem. IV. Overall Management Plan. V. Major Business process changes. VI. New technology components for your plan. VII. VIII. Conversion plans. QA measures. IX. Summary. ABSTRACT OSG consulting has established that the Healthlite Corporation has a need to...

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Plan Business Healthlite Yogurt Co. Danbury, Connecticut BY OTGONJARGAL SYED AZAM Table of Contents I. Abstract. II. Overview III. Analysis of the problem. IV. Overall Management Plan. V. Major Business process changes. VI. New technology components for your plan. VII. VIII. Conversion plans. QA measures. IX. Summary. ABSTRACT OSG consulting has established that the Healthlite Corporation has a need to improve their current order processing systems and communication methods. This need is brought about by the limited technology that is employed by Healthlite. What OSG proposes is that the company invests in a new system that will solve their order processing dilemmas and also the communication issues from the company headquarters to the regional offices. The new system includes new software and hardware and will also allow for the use of the Internet to provide a better experience for the customers and allow Healthlite to market new products and services. All of these functions will be integrated to provide a seamless experience for the customer and also will provide detailed reports to the management. When implemented, these systems will provide the means for the company to achieve greater growth and profitability. I. OVERVIEW I.I Organization Structure Healthlite Yogurt Company, a leading yogurt manufacturer in the United States, is based in Danbury, Connecticut. The companys senior management and marketing department are located at the companys headquarters. The marketing department is staffed with 12 associates. Seven processing plants manufacture and ship all of Healthlites product line. The organizations manufacturing and shipping facilities are strategically situated in New Jersey, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Colorado, Illinois, Washington and California. The company has 20 sales regions and receiving warehouses throughout the United States. Each sales region employs a sales manager and approximately 30 sales representatives. The sales representatives are responsible for taking sales orders from Healthlites customers. Some sales representatives manage as many as 80 customer accounts. I.II Organization Products Healthlite manufactures and commercializes yogurt and yogurt-based products. The companys product line includes: 1. Yogurt Varieties- low fat, low sugar and regular Flavors- lemon, raspberry, cherry, vanilla, blueberry, strawberry, plain 2. Yogurt-based snacks Varieties- Yogurt covered peanuts, pretzels, raisins 3. Frozen desserts- Frozen yogurt in a variety of flavors 4. Yogurt-based salad dressings I.III Major Business Processes A mainframe computer located at Healthlite corporate headquarters supports the companys business processes databases. Credit verification is done at the central office, where all orders are processed. Customer files are stored and managed at this location. Sales representatives in each of the sales regions can access or input customer account information through terminals linked to the corporate mainframe computer. Information pertaining to marketing and product shelf life is managed manually using a paper process system at each of the regional offices. Sales reports, information requisitions and promotional information is printed and mailed to the sales force from the regional office. The communication within the organization is done through the telephone, fax and regular mail. Interaction with customers is handled directly by the sales force. Sales representatives at each of the 20 sales regions write up hard copy orders placed by the customer using 2 paper forms. The sales representative then faxes or mails the order to the corporate office. The corporate office employs 20 workers to sort and enter the orders into the system. Order reports, specifying the type of product and quantity needed, are transmitted from the corporate headquarters to one of the seven processing plant so the designated facility can manufacture the product. The shipping department, using a commercial carrier, ships the order to the appropriate sales region warehouse. The order is then delivered from the warehouse to the customer. Due to the perishable nature of the product, yogurt has a limited shelf life. The complete process of ordering, manufacturing and shipping the product currently takes between 4-14 days. The time for a customer to receive an order will vary depending on customer location relative to the processing plant and estimated time of delivery. Healthlites manual, paper-based business processes are the main cause of this inadequate and long cycle. The archaic ordering system and lack of Web-based communication to support the sales and marketing business processes are interfering with the companys efficiency and ability to compete in the yogurt industry. II. ANANLYSIS OF THE PROBLEM II.I Existing Problems with the Current Processes Healthlite Yogurt Co. has not been able to keep up with increasing sales. This inability poses a huge risk to company success. The main contributing factor to this risk is the companys lack of technological infrastructure. This lack of infrastructure results in increased order processing time as well as lack of communication within the company. The company is not able to make timely decisions regarding pricing, marketing, and product planning due to the lack of company information readily available to the business decision makers. The Healthlite ordering process is done by mail or fax through the corporate office where credit verification is completed for each transaction. This process is slow and delays product shipment. Due to the short shelf life of yogurt, customers must be able to depend on timely delivery of Healthlite products in order to not end up with empty Healthlite product shelf space. Over the past year, Healthlites paperbased order processing system has resulted in accounting errors and problems with order accuracy. The company has even had trouble matching the correct shipping location to an order. These problems result in increased shipping times. The current order processing system involves several unnecessary steps and requires revision in order to ensure quick delivery of the product to the customer. The system involves sales representatives taking orders in each of the regional sales districts. All orders are then sent, using a hard copy ticket, to corporate headquarters, by mail or fax. Once corporate headquarters verifies customer credit, the orders are transmitted to one of the seven processing plants. From the processing plants, the orders are shipped to the customers, via a commercial carrier. Following figure displays the current order processing system. Figure 1 - Current Order Processing System THIS IS DONE Consumers do not have easy access to Healthlite Company and product information apart from what is on the product labels. Healthlite is concerned about losing shelf space in grocery stores because the product is not well known among consumers. There is a lack of regional marketing focus by the marketing staff. Healthlite is interested in introducing new products, but does not have reliable data for new and existing markets. Managers do not have access to up-to-date sales information from the sales representatives. Distribution of internal company information is slow. Pricing and promotional information are communicated by paper announcement and not received by sales representatives in a timely manner. Data about sales, advertising expenses, promotional campaigns and shelf life devoted to Healthlite products are all maintained by a paper record keeping system. The manual record keeping does not allow managers timely access to a complete view of sales company data. II.II Factors Contributing to the Problem The contributing factors of each problem must be recognized in order to successfully resolve the problem. The majority of the problems stem from a lack of technological resources. Below, each problem is addressed separately. 1. Order Transmittal to Headquarters Manual order transmittal causes this part of the process to be slow and unreliable. Data is not well maintained due to the larger number of human errors that are a part of a manual system. Loss of data can result in accounting errors and sales discrepancies. 2. Credit Verification for Each Transaction Going through a credit verification process for each order can be very time consuming. Returning customers who have established positive credit records with the company should not have to wait for this process to be complete before orders are transmitted to the manufacturing plant. 3. Customer Access to Healthlite Information Healthlite product consumers currently have no easy access to information about the company or the products other than what is listed on product labels. 4. Lack of Regional Marketing Healthlites entire 12-person marketing staff is located at corporate headquarters, which makes regional marketing difficult. All company data is not transmitted to headquarters in a timely fashion. The marketing staff does not have easy access to market trends or fluctuations within a specific region. Healthlites progress and growth have been hindered by a lack of information and the failure to identify new markets and expanding existing markets. 5. Transmittal of Monthly Sales Report Healthlites sales reports are documented using a paper recording system. The reports must then be mailed or faxed to corporate headquarters. Sometimes the only way for management to retrieve current sales data is by getting in contact with sales representatives by telephone and then piecing the information together. 6. Manual Record Keeping of Company Data Data about sales, advertising expenses, promotional campaigns and shelf life devoted to Healthlites products are all maintained using a paper recording system. The paper recording system makes it difficult for management to coordinate this information in order to use it in the decision making process. The information is not easily or quickly accessible by everyone who uses it. 7. Lack of Communication between Sites The lack of an Intranet site makes communication between offices slow and expensive. Employees depend on telephone and mail services for communication. This lack of communication between sites extends to lack of communication between management and subordinates. Employees who are off site may experience difficulties when questions or problems come up that require additional input. 8. Lack of Data File Sharing Regional offices do not currently have ready access to company wide information such as sales trends for a certain region or changes in personnel at a regional sales office. III. OVERALL MANAGEMENT PLAN III.I Overview of Management Plan OSG Business Solutions is proposing a business plan which will change the business processes of Healthlite Yogurt Company from a paper-based system to an Internet-based system. The biggest impact of this change will be to the Order Processing System (OPS). The OPS changes will result in some changes to the staff and employment hierarchy of the company. Diagram No.2 shows the new employment hierarchy. THIS IS DONE These changes will result in a moderate reduction of the sales staff. There will be some additional positions added to the company hierarchy for information technology specialists who will be required to monitor and maintain the systems Healthlite adopts. Since customers will be entering their own orders through an online ordering system, there will be a reduction in the number of people required for data entry positions. III.II Objectives The main objective of the changes to the Healthlite Yogurt Co. business processes is to reduce the time it takes for customers to receive an order, improve accounting accuracy and increase shelf space allotted by customers for Healthlite Yogurt Co. products. Improving the OPS will reduce the time between orders being placed and received, by removing two steps of the process. Instead of orders being routed through corporate headquarters by sales representatives, the orders will go directly from the customer to the processing plant to be produced. All record keeping will be done electronically. The system will be consistent across the entire company. There will be less room for human error. The information will be centrally stored by the database located at corporate headquarters. Maintaining this information in the database, which will also serve all of the regional offices, reduces the possibility of errors and redundancy of data. This will reduce accounting errors as well as maintain consistent customer profiles. A customers order will always be linked to the customers profile which will contain shipping and payment information. III.III Timeline The timeline for the project begins on January 17th, 2007 and ends on January 29th, 2008. The following table describes the timeline for each phase. TABLE FOR TIMELINE Description 1. Software, Hardware Purchases and implementation, employee training. 2. Implementation and training for CRM system and Order processing system. 3. Selecting and implementing website design for internet, extranet, intranet. Training for employees and customer regarding how to use. 4. Business Solution will be available as needed for shooting and finalization the integration of the system. TimeLine From 1st April, 2007 30th June, 2007 From 1st July, 2007 - 30th September, 2007 1st October,2007 December, 2007 1st January, 2008 31st March, 2008 III.IV Major Milestones The major milestones that will be used to measure progress of the implementation plan will be the completion of three different phases of the plan. Phase One The first phase will include the setup of the new company database software and applications. This phase will begin on April 1, 2007 and end on June 30, 2007. The completion of the milestone will include software and hardware purchases and implementation, as well as employee training with the new applications. Phase Two The second milestone will be the completion of phase two. Phase two will include the purchase, implementation and training for the CRM system. The CRM system will include all steps in the order processing system where a customer interfaces with Healthlite. Phase two will begin on July 1, 2007 and end on September 30, 2007. Phase Three Phase three of the plan will include selecting and implementing Web site designs for the Internet, Extranet and Intranet Web pages. This phase will also include training for employees and customers regarding how to use the new order processing system and internal features. Phase three implementation will run from Oct. 1, 2007 to Dec. 31. 2007. Transition management of all system functions and maintenance to the client will be complete no later than Dec. 31, 2007. OSG Business Solutions will be available as needed for trouble shooting and finalizing the integration of the system through March 31, 2008. III.V Cost and Benefit Assessment for Plan Implementation The budget is taking into account the major expenses as well as other expenses that will be incurred along the way for Healthlite. Healthlite needs to know the cost of the software and hardware upgrades as well as the cost of maintaining the system after the implementation. All areas such as data conversion and training must be covered so that we have money that is earmarked for those areas and Healthlite does not incur any hidden costs after the system is up and running. Some of these figures such as the training and maintenance fees are based on industry standards and may come in lower as a result of increased competition for business from vendors that are being solicited. The communication costs could also be lower if the existing structure is able to support the new system. This will be evaluated at a later date and cost will be adjusted down in the event that some existing hardware can be maintained during the upgrade. If there are modifications that need to be made they will be covered with the appropriate line item in the budget. While the software is the major cost with the implementation, the related software; software that cannot be purchased from your main vendor, will also factor heavily into the budget. We will be looking for every way possible to trim the budget during the implementation and provide an even greater return on investment for Healthlite. The following table explains the breakdown of the costs. COST BREAKDOWN Description Computer hardware platform Operating system platforms Enterprise and other IT software application Database management and storage Networking and telecommunication equipment and services Internet platforms Training and maintaining Expenditure ($ Billions) 145 110 297 42 200 35 130 IV. MAJOR BUSINESS PROCESS CHANGE There are various changes that have to be done in the business process system to achieve the aim and objectives of the plan. The major changes that are required in the business process are: IV.I IT Infrastructure The basic and most important change that must be done in Healthlite Yogurt Company is to create an IT infrastructure. To have an IT infrastructure, Healthlite have to invest in hardware, software, and service- such as consulting, education, and training that are shared across the entire firm or across entire business units in the firm. The IT infrastructure will provide the foundation for serving customers, working with vendors, and managing internal firm business processes. Healthlite Yogurt company to set an IT infrastructure not only have to set a physical devices and software applications that are required to operate entire enterprise but they also have to set a firm wide services budgeted by management and comprising both human and technical capabilities. These services include: Computing platforms used to provide computing services that connect employees, customer, and suppliers into a coherent digital environment, including large mainframes, desktop, and laptop computers, and personal digital assistants (PDAs) and Internet application. Telecommunications services that provide data, voice, and video connectivity to employees, customers, and suppliers. Data management services that store and manage corporate data and provide capabilities for analyzing the date. Application software services that provide enterprise-wide capabilities such as enterprise resource planning, customer relationship management, supply chain management, and knowledge management system that are shared by all business units. Physical facilities management services that develop and manage the physical installations required for computing, telecommunications, and data management services. IT management service that plan and develop the infrastructure, coordinate with business units for IT services, manage accounting for the IT expenditure, and provide project management services. Healthlite also have set IT standard that provide that firm and it business units with policies that determine which information technology will be used, when, and how. Another important think that to be consider is the IT education services that provide training in system use to employees and offer managers training in how to plan for and manage IT investments. Another think that Healthlite Company has to consider is the IT research and development services that provide the firm with research on potential future IT projects and investments that could help the firm differentiate itself in the marketplace. IV.II Order Processing The main driver for change for the Healthlite Company is the need to streamline the current order process, which is slow and paper-based. The companys current process is delaying orders and hurting the shelf life of their product. The delay in the shipping process currently stretches delivery times between 4 and 14 days. Part of this delay also stems from all orders being routed through the corporate headquarters office in order for credit verification to be completed. This new system will connect a customer account to the Healthlite order processing system. Through the use of e-Check and e-Charge, customer payments will be made and received almost instantly, eliminating the time for a verification to be complete. The proposal by OSG Business Solutions is the utilization of a Web-based ordering system. A Web-based system will allow the customers to directly enter and pay for orders. The paper trail will be eliminated and orders placed through the proposed system will be shipped the same day or next day. The changes will allow for a fresher product to arrive at the right place at the right time with minimal delays in shipping. The benefit of implementing this order processing system is not only the product will available at right time but it also creates a good relationship between the customers of Healthlite Yogurt Company. IV.III Website and Intranet The Web site and Intranet will fill another need for the Healthlite Corporation. It will provide the company with the ability to market their products online. This will lead to an increase in sales and will allow Healthlite to market new products and services much more quickly than their current system. Consumers do not currently have easy access to information about Healthlite products. Mass mailings tend to be expensive and ineffective. There is no means for consumers to contact Healthlite, provide feedback or raise questions. VI.IV RFID Technology advantage Another of implementing Web base system is that Healthlite company can use RFID technology. As the product will marked with RFID tag so once the product is sold and shipped to client of Healthlite Yogurt company the shelf will refilled as the inventory for different product is linked with the supplier so once the product have sold the system will automatically generate purchase order for the product to be delivered to the warehouse of Healthlite company. IV.V Information available for customer A public Web site will make information readily available to consumers. The Web site will contain contact information including e-mail address, telephone number and mailing address. The Web site will also feature a feedback page where consumers can enter comments about Healthlite products and rate the products they have tried. IV.VI Regional base marketing team Healthlite requires a more regional based marketing team. Every region must be considered separately. The current 12 person marketing staff is located only in Danbury, CT. This can incur high travel costs for the staff to visit the regions for which they are responsible and delay reaction to trends or opportunities. The marketing staff will be split up and moved to the various regions. Every region will have at least one marketing employee to work closely with the sales representatives of that region and the customers who sell the product. IV.VII Communication Another driver for change is the lack of communication between the Healthlite sales forces and management. Currently, the company experiences problems with the transfer of reports from the field and a lack of speed in the information being sent. Most of the materials are sent through the United States Postal System or other small package parcel delivery services. With the implementation of the companys Intranet, Extranet and Web site the sales force will have instant access to all of the sales and marketing information they need. The regional sales managers will be able to disseminate more information and time critical sales information faster than with the current system. IV.VIII Database Management System The company currently maintains most of its records and company data using a paper system. This has resulted in shipping delays and lost data. There have even been instances of not knowing where to ship a completed order. Sales representatives and customers do not receive new product or promotional information in a timely manner. This makes it difficult for customers to take advantage of everything Healthlite is offering. With access to the Extranet system, customers will know about new company information every time they log on to the ordering Web page. This will eliminate time previously spent by sales representatives to communicate this information. It will also eliminate any delays in informing the customer about new company information. This Extranet system will automatically link a customers order to the customers profile through the file organization system set up through the company database. With these new abilities and tools, Healthlite will be able to move forward into new markets and product areas. The new system will not only reduce the number of employees needed, but will also streamline the process for the company. With the reduction of delays and the faster delivery of products, the customer will have a much better experience, which in turn will increase the profitability of Healthlite. V. NEW TECHNOLOGY COMPONENTS FOR THE PLAN V.I Goals and Technology Vision Healthlite will need to change from a paper-based system to an Internet-based system. One concern raised by Healthlite is being able to use the new technology to assist local grocery stores and large chains who carry Healthlite products. Healthlite will implement an on-line ordering system. This system will also contain pricing information and current promotional information to be viewed directly by the customer. Orders will be placed online and transmitted directly to that stores regional processing plant. This will eliminate two steps from the order process. Currently, orders are placed by sales representatives using hard copy tickets which are then mailed or faxed to corporate headquarters. After credit verification, headquarters sends the order to the processing plants. The processing plants then ship the product to the customer. Allowing customers to place their own orders online will result in a minor reduction in staff. Credit verification will be required for new customers only. Once credit is established the first time, customers will maintain an account with Healthlite that is linked to a credit card, a bank account or some other source of funds. Using e-Check or e-Charge, funds will then be deducted each time an order is placed. Customers will be able to register, set up an account and obtain a customer identification number through a link on the public Web site. Through the company Intranet customers will be able to order products, view account status, view past ordering history and be informed about new products or current sales and promotions. For sales representatives, the new company Intranet will also contain a sales log program. This will replace the monthly sales report currently being sent by mail to the corporate office. Representatives will enter sales log information daily. Executives at corporate headquarters will have daily access to each sales representatives log of contacts made and the outcome of those new contacts. The new Internet Web site will also contain updated information for consumers. This will contain health information as well as new product information. There will also be a feedback page that allows consumers to submit comments about Healthlite products or make requests. This consumer feedback will be used by the marketing staff to help identify each regions target market and to expand each regions market share. V.II Current Technology and Resources Healthlites current technology consists of a mainframe computer located at corporate headquarters. There are 20 sales regions and 7 processing plants that each have a minicomputer that connects to the mainframe. All orders are routed through the mainframe computer after credit authorization is verified. Each salesperson has access to this information through a terminal in the regional office connected to the mainframe. Orders are currently sent to corporate headquarters by fax or mail. Once a customers credit is verified, orders are transmitted to the appropriate processing centers minicomputer. Data about sales, advertising expenses, promotional campaigns and shelf life devoted to Healthlite products are all maintained manually at each regional office. Manually maintaining this information makes it difficult for managers at the corporate level to have access to this information. V.III Priority Needs and Solutions The following table shows the priority items for Healthlite. These items are arranged from High Priority to Low Priority. Also included in the table are the hardware and software items that will be needed and how the hardware and software will be used to address the priority item. TABLE FOR PRIORITY ITEMS PRIORITY ITEM High Priority HARDWARE/SOFTWARE Order Processing REASON Intranet system, upgraded in minicomputer at each regional office Upgraded mainframe computer/database at headquarters for faster product delivery. Reduce accounting errors. Upgraded terminals for each sales rap. Daily summary of contact made by sales rap available to management. Medium Priority Online payment for established account holder. Intranet software for each customer. Online sales log records intranet software Consumer access to Healthlite Info. Low Priority Internet Web page maintenance. Marketing strategy. Educate potential consumers Attract new consumer. Healthlite Yogurt Company needs to use an Intranet / Extranet system to simplify the majority of the business processes. The network system will be based on Transmission Control /Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) using Internet and World Wide Web technology and standards. This type of network is less expensive to build and manage than private networks. This technology is widely used and therefore has an established reputation for being reliable as well as relatively simple to implement, use and maintain. The Intranet will simplify internal communication throughout the organization. The Extranet will allow access by authorized external users to the organizations internal network. The Extranet will also allow access to the companys Web page, through the World Wide Web. As a means of improving order processing, the Intranet/Extranet will be linked to a Web-enabled sale and order processing system, as well as a customer management system. The sales and marketing business processes will also be enhanced through the use of the Intranet/Extranet system. Communication between offices, corporate headquarters and customers will be via e-mail and Internet technology. Telephone cost and time will be reduced. Online sales logs maintained through the companys Intranet will be available to managers anywhere in the organization in real time. The Intranet will use multi-tiered client/server architecture and the Internet to transmit data to the Web server. An application server will handle application operations between the user and the business systems. The network will be enabled with the users authentication and authorization processes, as well as hardware and software firewalls and data encryption to prevent unauthorized access. The network design will be user-friendly, and will include tutorials. V.IV. Commerce and Web-Based Order Processing System Healthlite will build a Web site and a Web-based order processing system. The Web-based ordering system will be accessible to registered Healthlite customers through the Extranet. Every time the customer logs in he/she will access a personalized welcome area that will help with navigation through the site. Customer service areas will be easily accessible. Available customer service areas will include: Account history Product catalog and search features Online order placing Order tracking for previous orders Price lists and applicable discounts Newsletter with product updates and information Online billing Computerizing the order processing and directly transferring orders through Internet Technology to the local processing plant will significantly improve the time it takes to fill an order, reduce labor costs, and improve customer satisfaction. Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) will automate transactions done online and eliminate the excessive use of paper-based transactions and accounting errors. EDI can also assist the customer with inventory replenishment each time the customer places an order. Following figure shows the Web-based order processing system. Figure 5 - Web-Based Order Processing System V.V. Database Warehouse and Database Management System Building a data warehouse will allow current and past data from operational systems within Healthlite, as well as external information from business partners to be stored effectively in one central location at Corporate Headquarters. The database can be linked to the Web by using middleware and software products, so clients can have direct access to the data needed, directly from the Intranet. The database and servers at Corporate Headquarters will be the main storage facility. Healthlite will outsource the function of a data warehouse. The data warehouse will be the single location where every piece of company data is stored. The information in the data warehouse will be accessible through the central database and application. Sales representatives, managers, and processing plants will be equipped with client PCs operating with Wintel standards. A relational database management system can reduce inaccurate data and other related issues. Some of the benefits provided by an efficient database warehouse and management system, combined with Information Processing Systems for the sales and marketing functions, include reports of each sales region, individual and group performance indicators and analysis, valuable information for the marketing department to develop new products and services, and an over-all view of the sales and marketing functions of the organization. The standardization of the data will minimize errors and duplications. For the new system to be effective, enterprise-wide data standards and extensive training is needed. VI. CONVERSION PLANS VI.I Parallel Strategy The conversion plan that will be ideal for the Healthlite Yogurt Company would to you a parallel strategy in which both the systems and its potential replacement are run together for a time until everyone is assured that the new one functions correctly. This strategy will be the safest for the Healthlite Yogurt Company because there is backup plan, if there might be any type of issues with new system; they could switch back to old one until the issues have been resolved. VI.II. Consumer Web site The Web site will be accessible through the World Wide Web. Features and news within the Web site will be updated regularly by Healthlite Information Technology personnel using a Web Content Manager Software program. The Web site will feature information about existing Healthlite products, and new products. The Web site will also feature recipes using yogurt as an ingredient, Healthlite Company contact information, and a page for consumers to leave feedback. One important feature of the consumer Web site, not shown on the draft pages below, will be a link for prospective customer to register, set up an account and receive a customer identification number. VI.III. Customer Extranet Site The company Extranet Web site will be accessible to customers with an identification number. Customers will be responsible for maintaining and updating their account information through the Extranet. The Extranet will feature the order processing Web pages through the Customer Relationship Management software. VI.IV. Company Intranet Site The company Intranet site will be available to all employees. The Intranet site will be used by sales representatives to access customer information and maintain a sales log. The Intranet site will also feature company news stories and current promotional offers. VI.V. Proposed Project Plan for New System The proposed project plan for new system will be implemented in the following way: Web Strategy / Architecture and Development Healthlite will have a Web site where the consumer can find information about the company, the company product line and other valuable news. The consumers Web site will have a link that will direct prospective customers to a site where they can set up a new customer account. The Customer Relation Management (CRM) System will support this process. The CRM system will create the new account and assign a customer identification number. It will manage the account electronically and enable the customer to retrieve past and present account information. The system will provide reports for Healthlite sales representatives, as well as for the companys sales, marketing and executive corporate managers. The data collected from the Web site and the CRM system applications will be maintained and stored through the corporate database, and ultimately to the data warehouse using Data Bridge. This technology uses software and hardware to transfer data using Internet connectivity. Account information will be available for sales representatives and managers through the companys Intranet. The Intranet will support the new sales and marketing process and the flow of information between regional offices, processing plants, the shipping department, the accounting department and corporate headquarters. The Intranet will also support sales representatives who manually settle orders. Healthlites Intranet will require a Wide Area Network to connect the Local Area Networks of the regional offices. The Intranet will operate with a multi-tiered client/ server system and TCP/IP reference mode for network communication. The network design will be a combination of star and bus topology. Firewalls and other security means will be installed to protect the companys information system. Other technology hardware and software requirements are: 1. 2. T-1 lines for high speed data transmission Approximately 600 personal computers for each sales representative to be equipped with a Web browser, desk top client software and peripheral devices 3. Web servers with Appache HTTP software to store and display files via http protocol and others like File Transfer Protocol (FTP) 4. Application servers to lighten Healthlite legacy systems and support business application systems like the CRM and Order Processing System (OPS) 5. Database servers to access other Healthlite databases, to distribute desired data to users, and support the Database Management System 6. Back-end systems to handle and control the data An Extranet will allow customers with established accounts to access a Web site exclusively for customers. The Web site will allow authenticated customers to order products on line. The Order Processing System (OPS) will support this function by presenting the products and creating, processing and transmitting the customers order to the appropriate departments. The OPS will be integrated with ECharge and E-Check online payment systems to automate payments. Every step in the process will directly interface with the database in order to store and retrieve information. For simplicity, the database is only shown at the end of the ordering process. VII. QUALITY ASSURANCE MEASURES The Quality assurance will be set by benchmarking a stick standard for products, services, and other activities and then measuring performance against those standards. We will also use external industry standards, standards set by other companies, internally developed high standards, or some combination of the three. To assure proper implementation of the new system testing will be done. Testing the information system will be broken down into three types of activities. Those are unit testing, system testing, and acceptance testing. Unit Testing Unit testing or program testing will consist of testing each program separately in the system. The purpose of such testing is to guarantee that programs are error free. Testing should be viewed instead as a means of locating errors in programs, focusing on finding all the ways to make a program fail. Once they are pinpointed, problems can be corrected. System Testing System testing will test the functioning of the information system as a whole. It tries to determine whether discrete modules will function together as planned and whether discrepancies exist between the way the system actually works and the way it was conceived. The areas that will be examined are performance time, capacity for file storage and handling peak loads, recovery and restart capabilities, and manual procedures. Acceptance Testing. Acceptance testing will provide the final certification that the system is ready to be used in a production setting. System test will be evaluated by users and reviewed by management. When all parties are satisfied that the new system meets their standards, the system is formally accepted for installation. The system development team will also work with users to devise a systemic test plan. The test plan will include all of the preparations for the series of tests. The methodology that will be used to develop the structure will be Structured Methodology. Structured development methods are process-oriented, focusing primarily on modeling the processes, or actions that captures, store, manipulate, and distribute data as the data flow through a system. These methods separate data from processes. A separate programming procedure must be written every time someone wants to take an action on a particular piece of data. The procedures act on data that the program passes to them. The primary tools for representing a systems components processes and the flow of data between them are the data flow diagram (DFD). The data flow diagram offers a logical graphic model of information flow, partitioning a system into modules that show manageable levels of details. It rigorously specifies the processes or transformations that occur within each module and the interfaces that exit between them. VIII. SUMMARY The process changes proposed by OSG Business Solutions will help Healthlite Yogurt Company realize its full potential in the yogurt and yogurt-based product market. By simplifying the ordering process, customers will receive the product within 2-3 days of placing the order. Consumers, customers and employees will be more aware of Healthlite company news through the use of the Internet, Extranet, and Intranet Web sites. Management will have easy access to real time sales and ordering information. The electronic information will all be stored in a main database management system maintained at Corporate Headquarters as well as a data warehouse machine. The implementation of the new systems will be complete in about 13 months. Training will be provided to all employees. OSG Business Solutions will help make this as smooth a transition as possible for employees and customers alike.
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