Nowadays, the economists pay additional attention to the significance of the strategic operations management due to the fact that it allows carrying out an analysis of the key initiatives which are taken by the top management of the company. The strategic management integrates the organization’s mission specifying its objectives and mission, and it is applied in the organisation’s policies and plans’ development. In order to evaluate the overall performance of the business and its progress, the balanced scorecard is being analyzed.
In order to outline the links between operations strategy and business strategy within De’ Longhi, an analysis of the company’s background has been carried out, the role of Information technology management in the organizational structure of De Longhi has been evaluated, and the Enterprise resource planning in De Longhi has been analyzed.
While referring to the critical appraisal of the issues relating to layout, process type and use of technologies within De Longhi, an analysis of the business strategy developing in De Longhi has been carried out.
In regard to the value chain, it is important to point out the fact that it implies the chain of activities which are applied by the company for delivering its products and services to the end consumers. In order to evaluate the value chain, an analysis of the supply chain has been made.
Background of the De Longhi
First of all, within the scope of this research paper, it is important to analyze the background information of the De’ Longhi. It has been established in 1902 in the form of a small industrial parts manufacturing workshop. In 1950, an incorporation of the company has taken its place. Initially, it has been a manufacturer of air conditioners and portable heaters. After some time, it has expanded the field of its activity to manufacturing domestic appliances used in the cooking and food preparation and also devices for ironing, cleaning, and other household activities.
Information Technology Management Role in the Organizational Structure of De Longhi
Within the scope of the research, additional attention would be paid to the company’s information technology management due to the fact that the rapid development of the De Longhi business is not possible without an effective system of information storage, sharing and treatment.
Information and technology has become significant in the organizational design and strategy, and as a result, an isolation of information and technology professionals within various organizations prevents them from being active in managing of the company. The IT personnel ought to be regarded as insiders who can easily take part in the running of the organization. However, information and technology experts have faced a number of various challenges in the management of the organization, and as a result, it has affected the important business rules that are used in the management. IT has been used for different functions such as decision support processing, processing of information, and order processing in De Longhi.
In the organizational context, IT has not only played a significant role as the workforce, but it has also gained relevance in such aspects as business strategy, organizational structure, and the extent to which the managers of the organization can manage the operations in the organization.
Currently, the importance of IT for the De Longhi activity is widely discussed and practically confirmed. It is a key success factor of the organization, and it impacts all its departments. It is useful in the human resource centre, procurement department, sales department, accounting department, marketing department, foreign economical activity department, and other functional units of the company.
In the organizational structure of De Longhi, IT plays a significant role, even though there is no clearly established cut between the organizational structure and IT. However, IT plays a great role in decentralization of the organizational control and also its centralization. In most cases, the organization structure and the available IT do interact in a manner that is unpredictable, but its significance is majorly based not on the organizational goal but rather on other factors.
The informational technologies applied in the De Longhi allow collecting and saving the information according to the given algorithms with the help of personal computers. It allows saving the large-scale information on the machine-readable medium. Moreover, it allows exchanging information with all parts of the world during a limited time period.
It is possible to state that introduction of the informational systems via informational technologies into the De Longhi activity has improved its quality of work. What is more, it is required by the nowadays business world, where time is money and the competition is won by those company which may offer its services or products at the proper time and in the proper manner- convenient and easy to access for a customer or a business partner. In regard to the internal aspect of IT implementation into the business, it has allowed the top management of the De Longhi to achieve the effective controlling of the company’s operations, easy correction of the deviations, and monitoring of the results.
In De Longhi, the model of a four level pyramid is applied. It is based on the existing different levels of hierarchical arrangement in the organization.
At the top of the pyramid, there is the executive information system, followed by the decision support system, and then the management information and transactional information systems are at the bottom of the pyramid. The pyramid model is useful to most organizations as it is formulated on the basis of new technologies and new categories of information system.
Enterprise Resource Planning in De Longhi
The next issue to be discussed is the Enterprise resource planning (ERP) in De Longhi. It is a universal solution for the organization and also an effective tool of the practical management. In the De Longhi, ERP integrates the internal and external information within the entire organization (company). It includes the following spheres of economic activity as accounting, manufacturing, marketing, service, sales, customer relationship, etc. In other words, it is possible to consider this type of planning as the whole system planning. In the De Longhi, such planning is carried out with the help of the specially developed software and informational systems, which cover all spheres of the enterprise activity, and all changes, new information, and calculations are included into the system immediately.
The main purpose of application of such type of software and planning with the help of this software is supporting the flow of information within the De Longhi between all its departments and also managing the connections with other outside stakeholders. This type of information system also enables information sharing and other types of collaboration between different departments, which may be required in some situations. The centric Information processing also enables De Longhi to reach the prompt introduction of some new information, and it also improves the process of successful management of the organization.
In De Longhi, an ERP system applies the database for storing all types of information. The ERP system has got the following characteristics: it is an integrated system for collection of information and its operation in the real time or the time next to real – in such a case, the relying on periodical updates is not required; it is the common database for all departments of the organization and it supports all the applications used by the employees; it could be applied by the employees, and finally, its installation process does not require much efforts of the Information Technology department employees.
The ERP system in the organizational context plays a significant role in the efficiency of the carried out activities, and it also gains relevance in the business strategy developing. In the De Longhi, ERP has been used for different functions such as decision support processing and information treatment.
In order to outline the practical application of the ERP in De Longhi and its efficiency in the company activity, it is important to outline its role in the supply chain management improvement as an evident example of such a system practical implementation.
Supply Chain Management of De Longhi
Supply chain management (SCM) is a circulatory system of the entire business system of the company. It includes such processes as delivery, movement and storage of the raw materials required for the product manufacturing, inventories production and, finally, the promotion of the finished goods to the end consumers
The SCM responsibility in the De Longhi includes planning, designing and monitoring of all activities of the supply chain in order to organize and support the infrastructure and the logistic system, balancing the supply and demand for the product, and, finally, making objective measurement of the products’ global performance.
The main functions of the SCM in the De Longhi are the following:
Managing the flow of all raw materials into the enterprise;
Developing, monitoring and controlling the raw materials movement inside the company;
Organizing and controlling the final product flow out of the organization; its distribution system monitoring and support.
There are three levels of the SCM functioning in De Longhi: strategic, tactical, and operational.
Strategic level includes the following processes:
· Optimization of all processes which take place in the strategic network, including all information concerning quantity and quality of the warehousing, manufacturing facilities and distribution network coordination;
· Working with the partners – suppliers, distributors, and customers (clients); communication channels work coordination; logistic system support and improvement;
· Management of the product lifecycle – introducing new products into the supply chain in order to get the positive economical results in the shortest period of time;
· Managing operations with the informational technologies; making decisions concerning the target group – determining the number of the potential customers and the region of the demand.
On the tactical level, the following business processes take place:
· Signing of contracts concerning sourcing and purchasing of the raw materials;
· Business planning (scheduling and contracting);
· Making decisions concerning inventorying (quantity, quality and location of the manufacturing facilities);
· Investigating the consumers’ demand and their needs;
· Benchmarking – borrowing the experience from the other organizations which operate in the same business field (competitors);
All above listed activities are executed on the operational level after competent planning and subscription of the relevant contracts and documentation.
According to the above listed functions of the SCM, it is evident that application of the ERP system on all its levels, especially on theStrategic level, has improved the quality of the decision making in De Longhi and, as a result, ensured its effective practical implementation.
On the strategic level, all the processes of the information investigation, its treatment and correct decision making, according to the current situation on the market, may be managed if to have up-to-date software and skilfully organized informational system. In the information age, the competition is won by that participant of the market who operates with up-to date information and makes correct decisions for business before other do that. De Longhi is one of such companies. That is why it is very important to be responsible for all actions which take place and to improve the decision making process. The wide spectrum of information needs to be treated and taken in consideration, such as the rates for the previous periods, current indexes, etc. De Longhi gets this information within the shortest period of time with the help of the ERP software.
The ERP system offers the management of De Longhi an opportunity to apply the centric information processing. This issue is beneficial to the organization because it ensures straightforward processing and storage of information in the organization and also reduces overheads in the storage of data. Dissimilar information in the organization can also be presented in a flexible manner. In the organizational structure, ERP system plays a significant role as well.
Generally, ERP plays a dual role in the management of De Longhi: it assists and constraints the capabilities that are portrayed by the workers in the organization and, as a result, it creates a unique cultural component within the organization. In the structure of De Longhi, the adopted ERP culture represents in itself a particular subculture in collision with other cultures that are presented within the organization. In order to succeed in using the available new technologies, managers need to cope with the endless flow of information to ensure that the organization is managed effectively. The organization managers need to adopt new technologies in order to ensure a shift in the structure of the organization.
Business Strategy Developing in De Longhi
The important role of the business strategy developing has been recognized by different managers of De Longhi. When the results of the operational strategy are maximized, ERP system becomes the highest validation tool that is capable of transforming the organization structure, as this ensures that the senior managers of the organization are maximum focused on the labour activities. In addition, there are risks associated with the adoption of ERP system. Usually, managers do not understand the pros of such system application, and as a result, they lose the opportunity to apply the available competitive dynamics in the organization structure development and improvement.
Finally, it is important to make an emphasis that, in order to succeed in the information processing field and to ensure its effective practical implementation, De Longhi has recruit the employees with the deep knowledge in the management of the IT.
Leadership Style in De Longhi
There are various styles of leadership: autocratic (authoritarian), participative (democratic), laissez-faire (free rein), narcissistic and toxic leadership styles. Each of the above listed styles and approaches have its advantages and disadvantages. Sometimes, it happens that leaders use a combination of styles, which means utilizing features and principles from different styles at once. In De Longhi, a single leadership style cannot be determined as the styles are used in combination. Generally, it is possible to note that an effective leader of a particular business entity should be authoritative, competent, creative, fair, just, powerful, self-respectful, and wise.
First of all, a leader should be an authority for subordinates or adherents, because they need to be convinced that their leader has features and knowledge that will allow him/her to attain the stated goal or implement the integrating idea into practice.
Ability to collaborate is another quality that a leader needs to have, because it is possible to be a leader only in case of cooperation with other people. Collaboration in this case implies discussion of some questions and issues with other members of a team or group; a leader should implement changes into the current strategy or correct some deviations only after having discussed them with other participants of the process.
Competence in the area of the leaders’ professional activity is one of the most significant qualities of a leader, because profound knowledge of both theoretical and practical backgrounds of a particular area is an obligatory requirement for a person. It is especially important for those who manage large projects, bring some ideas into the masses or are responsible for coordination, development, and practical implementation of some innovations.
Creative approach towards professional activity is the key success factor for a leader in the modern world of competition and rapid development of new technologies and approaches towards leadership. Fairness and justice are those values which provide leaders with the credit of trust from employees and followers.
Finally, a leader should be powerful and responsible for his/her decisions and actions because people who cooperate with this person act in accordance with the rules and regulations set and enforced by the leader. Self-respect and wisdom are those professional qualities which show other members of the team the patterns of behaviour, professionalism, and human relations.
To conclude, it is important to emphasize the importance of introduction of the newest achievements in the technology in IS area into the business practice of De Longhi. There are several reasons for this. First of all, it saves time and money for the informational search. Secondly, it ensures automation of routine decision making process: “if…. then…” automatic system. It facilitates all processes coordination and improvement since top-management is provided with an access to the information about each department (current information about current processes).
The computer-assisted software, such as ERP system, has simplified the majority of the processes which take place in the company. It allows easy controlling of all actions of employees and all needed additional sources. Besides, it provides the company with an opportunity to reduce time, costs, and efforts directed to the main management processes, which are planning, organization, motivation, and control. That is why it is possible to say that such software is a universal solution for De Longhi, which has become up-to-date, competitive, and successful.