A an organization. They are ü Production

A business is a formal
organization whose aim is to produce products and provides services to
customers for a profit. Business firms purchase inputs and resources from
suppliers or vendors. Then employees from production department transform those
inputs through production stages. After that, they have to deliver their
outputs to constituents and customers. Although the processing flow of an
organization seems simple like above, there are much more processes that need
to be done in a business firm so that it could work well. There are four main
functional areas in an organization. They are

ü  Production
and Manufacturing

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ü  Sales
and Marketing

ü  Finance
and Accounting

ü  Human
Resource and Administration

Each functional area has its own
functions, processes and responsibilities as follow.

Production & Manufacturing

 

Production
and manufacturing sectors are responsible for turning raw materials into final
products through the production processes. 
The production and manufacturing are most important parts of an
organization since the functions of other areas such as finance, research,
developing and marketing mostly depend on the products done by the production
department.

Purpose

A
key aspect of modern production is ensuring quality. The term quality means
fitness for purpose that is product, process or service should do exactly what
is expected of it.

Production and manufacturing stages

If
we break out production and manufacturing processes, there are five sub
processes roughly.  They are

1.   
Production and Planning

2.   
Purchasing

3.   
Storing

4.   
Design and Technical Supports

5.   
Works

Production and Planning

During
Production and Planning process, the relative staffs or managers will set
standards and targets for each section of the production process. The quantity
and quality of products coming off a production line will be closely monitored.
They will make the whole plan with the supplementary of what they want to
products and what products must have.

Purchasing

Staffs
in this section are responsible for providing the materials, components and
equipment required to keep the production process running smoothly. A vital
aspect of this role is ensuring stocks arrive on time and to the right quality.

Storing

In
storing process, all the necessary tools, spares, raw materials and equipment
required to service the manufacturing process are stocked. In case stores are
unavailable, buffer stocks will need to be kept and the use of computerized
stock control systems helps keep stocks at a minimal but necessary level for
production to continue unhindered.

Designing and Technical Support

In
this stage, the products are designed and developed with the help of technical
support. Then manufacturing works follow up the designing and technical support
stage.

Manufacturing Works

It
will be concerned with the manufacture of products. This will include the
maintenance of the production line and other necessary repairs. The works
department may also have responsibility for quality control and inspection.

Information, Technologies and systems Needs for Manufacturing and
Production Functional Areas

Relevant
information systems and technologies are being used by respective employees:
production manager, administrative service managers and operations analysts to
accomplish every day jobs.  To be able to
process, those functional areas need to obtain information from raw information
from vendors, suppliers, order information from customers, detail instructions
and strategies from administration and other updating information like order
canceling, quantity adding or deleting or faster order due dates.

In
production, the technologies can support a lot to get necessary information
that the functional area needs. They can be used in collecting data or
information that in necessary in production process. For example, we can make
tables and insert related data there. It would be more systematic and simple
when we retrieve each data later. Moreover networking also plays a vital role
in production because network technology is very helpful in production
field.  In case income orders are
canceled, it is very important to let the production department know so that they
can stop making that order. If not, the goods will be wasted. In manufacturing,
the use of technical equipment is also very essential.

In
both manufacturing and production, information systems like Transaction
Processing System (TPS) and Supply Chain Management System (SCM) can be used to
access necessary information and faster work flow.

Additional Conclusion Section (D1)

Manufacturing
and production are main industrial departments of a business organization.
Those departments need to work rhythmically and no postpones should be
occurred. So, above information systems with information technologies should be
used to ensure the quality and maintain the processing speed of those
departments. 

Sales & Marketing

The
sale division takes the lead in setting strategies and decides what marketing
communications it needs to support its efforts. The sale and marketing sector
set individual sales rep quotas, as well as the overall volume goal for the
company. To achieve the goals, it creates bonuses and commissions structures.
The department uses previous sales figures and expert projections to estimate
which products will sell where and in what amount. That is the main duty of the
sale and marketing. The marketing sector has also responsibility to draw
marketing plan which is adaptable or acceptable for the products so that sales
can be improved by using that marketing strategy.

The
main functions of marketing functional area are as follow.

Ø  Identifying
the customers for the firm’s products or services

Ø  Determining
what customers need and want

Ø  Planning
and developing products and services to meet their customers’ needs

Ø  Advertising
and promoting their services and products

The
main functions of sales functional areas are as follows.

Ø  Selling
products and providing the services contacting with customers

Ø  Taking
orders

Ø  Following
up on sales

Information, Technologies and systems Needs for Sales and Marketing
Functional Areas

Information
needs for those functional areas are especially customers’ information, their
interaction with the firm and the product information like new products or
shipping of the existing products.

Sales
and marketing department should use some informational technologies and
equipment. When we provide customer services like sending parcels to home as
marketing strategy, the tracking system is sometimes used. In marketing
section, CRM system is vital for effective marketing strategies. Some software
like Microsoft can also be used Excel to calculate and compare the monthly
sales or weekly sales. Databases are also essential  to store sale records.

Additional Conclusion Section (D1)

Sales
and marketing departments are the physical impressions of an organization. They
need to deal with customers and so there should be unique and no errors. So,
information systems like CRM could absolutely help those departments with their
functions.

Finance and Accounting

Finance
and Accounting division is one of the most important departments in an
organization. That department has to handle the money that is running through
the whole organization. As to be exact, it has to collect and calculate the
income and outcome money and maintain them. It also needs to balance both
income and outcome. If income and outcome money are balance, it needs to report
about the problems to the administrating department so that it can handle
immediately.

It
is responsible for managing the firm’s financial assets such as cash, stocks
and other investments and managing the capitalization of the firm. It needs to
consider whether the firm is getting the best return and profits on its
investments. To be able to do so, the finance function needs to attain a
considerable amount of information from sources external to the firm. The
responsibilities of finance and accounting areas are listed as follow.

Ø  Maintaining
and managing the firm’s financial records

Ø  Account
for the flow of funds in a firm

Ø  Keep
track of financial assets and funds flow

Information, Technologies and systems Needs for Sales and Marketing
Functional Areas

The
information that accounting and finance departments need is certainly financial
information of the whole business like account receiving, transferring, paying
and other cash processes. It also has to manage and balance the income and
outcomes of the whole business organization. Since it has to handle the cash flow
of the frim, it should develop information system like Electronic Data
Processing (EDP) Systems and Financial Management Information System (FMIS).

The
most obvious impact of technology in accounting is the presence of computers,
printers, scanners and faxes. Information technology (IT) transformed the
accounting world–no more green paper sheets and pencils.Besides the equipment,
accountants appreciate the software. For example, spreadsheet programs are
highly efficient at helping accountants with calculations and reporting. There
are accounting programs in the market that are easy to use and affordable,
making them very popular with small businesses. Software can help accountants
in their daily tasks, such as paying bills, recording transactions and
reporting. The program keeps all data organized and in a centralized location.

The
Internet also opened many doors and made life easier in many ways, especially
in the accounting area, where documents can be shared, research can be
conducted and taxes can be filed-all online.

Information
technology is also used widely in accounting security. Identifications and
passwords limit access to confidential information. Instead of binders and
papers lying around, security can be greatly enhanced with the proper computer
programs. Using a program, accounting information can be encrypted in a way to
prevent unauthorized use, making it quite safe. A lost, stolen or misplaced
laptop or desktop computer can be tracked using security software that can be
activated remotely.

Additional Conclusion Section (D1)

Finance
and accounting departments are one of the main departments of the business
flow. They had to handle thousands of cash records and there must not have
errors. Little error can cause deep trouble to the organization. So, the
organization had better prevent those problems with information systems,
technologies and software.

Human Resource and Administration

Human
Resource (HR) is a department where all the staffs of the organization are
handled. It mainly does hiring new employees, redundancy and developing current
employees’ hard skills. The main function of this department is for attracting,
developing and maintaining the firm’s workforce. It can be also said as
a critical component of employee well-being in any business, no matter how
small. Apart from main functions, HR has also responsibilities like payroll,
benefits, hiring, firing, and keeping up to date with state and federal tax
laws. There are four main services or responsibilities of HR department. They
are as follow.

ü  Payroll
administration that includes
produce checks, handling taxes, and dealing with sick time and vacation time.

ü  Employee
benefits which are health,
medical and life insurance, 401(k) plans and cafeteria plans.

ü  HR
management that includes
recruiting,
hiring and firing. This also includes background interviews, exit interviews
and wage reviews.

ü  Risk
management includes workers’ compensation, dispute resolution, safety
inspection, office policies and handbooks.

Administration
is the main department of an organization. It can be also called the head
section because it rules all the other departments and keep the flow of them.
Usually managers and bosses handle administration department. It is the link
between an organization’s various departments and ensures the smooth flow of
information from one part to the other. Thus without an effective
administration, an organization would not run professionally and smoothly.

The
duty of an administrator depends on the company that the administrator works
for. The main job responsibility of an administrator is to ensure the efficient
performance of all departments in an organization. They act as a connecting
link between the senior management and the employees. They provide motivation
to the work force and make them realize the goals of the organization. It is
very difficult to run an organization without a good administration faculty. It
is administrator, who makes the rules & regulations and applies these rules
in an organization. Without presence of an administrator an organization can
never work in a sound way. All the tasks & all the departments are relates
to the administration and they need to follow up the instructions from the
administration department.

Some of the functions of the
administration department include the following:

Ø  It
provides logistical assistance to the entire organization. It makes sure it
provides offices for all staff and office equipment needed by staff.

Ø  It
is responsible for supervising the work done by the staff of the organization.

Ø  It
needs to make sure that all equipment and machines are maintained. If there are
any damaged equipment, it is the department’s responsibility to replace them.

Ø  It
is also responsible for the approval of office requisition.

Information, Technologies and systems Needs for Human Resources and Administration
Functional Areas

Information
needs for HR department to run its process is the records, performance
appraisal form of existing employees and other media information that needs to
advertise hiring new employees. It also need financial information from finance
department for the payroll system of employees and employees whom need to get
overtime work fees. For administration, all the necessary information from
different functional areas is necessary to be able to process well.

Human
resource manager can use technology to monitor the performance of
employees. With the help of tools like CPM (Computerized performance
monitoring), the manager can know how much work has been accomplished by each
employee per a given period of time. Also the same software can help in the
flow of information about employee performance across the organization. At the
end of the day everything is transparent and production is guaranteed because
humans once monitored, they will do their best to look good.

Systems
like Business Intelligence System (BIS) and Decision Support System (DSS)
should be used for better performance.

Additional Conclusion Section (D1)

HR
and Administration departments are responsible to control and manage the
quality of not only goods but also staffs by making strategic plans and develop
the whole organization. Information systems can help much in important decision
making sectors and gathering staff’s information and consideration their
performance.

Overall Conclusion

Many
business processes are tied to a specific functional area. Each functional has
its own aim and responsibilities. All those functional areas need to work
together for business process flow. For example, the sales and marketing
function would be responsible for identifying customers, and the human
resources function would be responsible for hiring and managing employees.
Other business processes cross many different functional areas and require
coordination across other departments.

The
sales department would receive a sales order. The order will pass first to
accounting to ensure the customer can pay for the order either by credit
verification or request for immediate payment prior to shipping.  After that, the production department needs
to retrieve products from inventory or manufacture the ordered amount of
products. Accounting department will generate a bill or invoice and sales
department will have to be notified of the shipment from accounting department
and prepare to support customer by answering calls or providing warranty
claims.

Although
the receiving the order and selling to the customers seem simple, a very
complicated series of business processes from different functional areas
undergo. Therefore, it is very important and necessary to ensure that the flow
is not stopping or delaying in one of the functional processes. Information
systems with the help of information technologies can be claimed to be
supportive to those various processes of different functional areas.