16 References are listed in a separate page at the end, as prescribed.
Information Technology is for everyday and for everyone, more so for an organization doing business. But, technology is only a means to achieve a business end through service centric system landscapes. As the market becomes competitive, organization need to focus on stronger and more effective communication, by way of transmission of voice, video and data. Timely access to relevant critical data is crucial in today's competitive world. Proper document imaging, capture, indexing, searching, retrieval, archiving and record management are necessary. The system should be robust, simple, reliable, flexible, cost-effective, scalable, interoperable, sharable on need basis, secure and easy to use. Information generated by IT/IS has to be used for speedy suitable decisions for cost-effectiveness. This exercise will help the organization to achieve early materialization of break-even point by early realization of fixed costs and even reducing the marginal cost to increase the profitability of the organization by means of standardization, effective budgetary control, early visualization of future needs/threats, risk-analysis, and guiding the management to address vulnerability of opportunities, and control IT sources to proactively manage risk and keep business up and running, through optimal solutions and integrity of business critical operations, reduced storage costs, increase in productivity, lower transaction time, reduced business operating costs, reduced document retrieval time, faster and easier access to information across the enterprise, improved work flow efficiency, and access to database by management for effective decisions.
"Information Technology involves computers, software, and services, but good IT synthesizes these elements with a concentration on how your organization can best meet its goals. Increasingly, the IT department is the hub of any company-and companies expect IT managers to accomplish a variety of tasks with limited resources." Thus, IT must use organizational and managerial skills to run the most effective program possible.(The Power of IT-Jan de Suttter)
"The role of IT will differ depending on their organization's current business context: fighting for survival, successfully competing, or leading its industry by creating a vision for how technology can improve the business to creating clear and appropriate IT governance to building a leaner, more focused IS organization, to deliver on the promise of IT to yield real, measurable, and bankable results." ( The New CIO Leader-by MARIANNE BROADBENT AND ELLEN S.KITZIS)
"IT leveling the playing field for smaller-size businesses: It is precisely because of evolving IT and business process-processing that mid-sized firms from all over the world compete now on a more level playing field. Suddenly, mid-sized and even small businesses have access to the same advantages that were once held exclusively by the larger, vertically integrated firms." (Farmer-owned ethanol and the role of information technology --Anthony Crooks and John Dunn)
With the above views in the background, the Areas of utilization of Information Technology by organizations in competitive business environment are enumerated below together with the details of the