Management Information System Assignment: Case Analysis of Bahri
Task: Management Information System Assignment Details The project involves studying the IT infrastructure of a relevant information system (IS)/ information technology (IT) used by selecting any organization of your choice locally or internationally The idea is to investigate the selected organization using the main components of IT (Hardware, software, services, data management and networking). Infrastructure Investigation, which is in a selected industry, should be carried out by using articles, websites, books and journal papers and /or interviews.
Business organizations must manage the information system very well to provide an organized and better service to the clients. The management information system assignment will help to gain a better idea about the information management system of Bahri which is a very famous transport and logistics company in Saudi Arabia. The organizational profile of the company will also be given here along with the purpose of the company. After knowing the purpose of the company, better suggestions can be given for the improvements in the company. The organizational structure of the company will also be discussed to provide a depth knowledge about the information management system of the company. Various strategies are available that help to provide competitive advantages in the market. The best strategy system for Bahri will be discussed here. A detailed discussion of the IT infrastructure of the company will also be provided in this article.
Management of information systems is very important to make proper decisions in the organization. It also helps to make a better collection, processing analysis of information 9n and organization. Bahri is a very famous transportation and logistics company in Saudi Arabia. The company has managed to make huge revenue in the global market with the help of its excellent information management system. The company wants to improve its IT infrastructure so that the service can also be improved. The main vision of the company will also be discussed here so that proper knowledge about the organizational profile can be gained. Various strategies of the competitive advantage of the company will also be discussed here along with the best strategy for the company. Moreover, the technologies used in the company will also be discussed here to provide a better idea of the IT infrastructure of the company.
2. Organizational profile
Bahri is a very famous transportation and logistics company in Saudi Arabia. The company provides various types of services such as crude oil, oil products, chemical, cargo, and shipping management. The company has managed to lead the global market through its excellent services and products. The company is the largest owner of Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCCs). The company owns 88 vessels, 5 dry bulk carriers, and 6 multipurpose vessels. Besides having roses. The company also has 35 chemical tankers which have helped it to earn huge revenue in the market (Voronkova et al., 2017). The company wants to create value and share prosperity all over the world. The main objective of the company is to connect economies through excellence in global logistics solutions. If the organizational structure of the company is analysed, it can be found that the functional organizational structure has been used there. The company groups all the marketers together in one department, all the customer service providers in a separate department, and all the salesmen in a different department (Nam et al., 2017). The functional organizational structure of the company helps the company to organize all the business activities effectively.
3. Strategies of competitive advantage
Various strategies can be used to give a competitive advantage to the rivalry companies in the market. Bahri can use the most appropriate strategy to give a competitive advantage to competitors. The strategies that can be used are described below so that the best strategy for Bahri can be chosen –
Cost leadership strategy: Only lower-cost producers can implement a cost leadership strategy for giving a competitive advantage in the market. The more one can be able to reduce the cost of production, the less will be the selling price of the company. Hence, it is very important to reduce the production cost to provide services or products to the customers at an affordable price. If a company can provide high-quality products at a minimum rate, customers will be attracted to the company (Kalabokidis et al., 2016). The company will also be able to survive in the market even in difficult situations.
Focus strategy: When a business organization wants to give a competitive advantage in the market, it must focus on a small segment of the market. Focusing on a small segment will help the company to provide the best products or services (Cheburet&Odhiambo-Otieno, 2016). A narrow target market segment is focused on the company so that it can give full attention to the target market segments and customers. The chances of customer loyalty increase when a company looks for a focus strategy to give a competitive advantage. Differentiation strategy: Differentiation strategy is for the companies which focus on providing different products to their customers. No customer will buy the products of the company if a similar product is available at lower prices at the market. However, customers can spend high prices if they get high-quality products (Barton et al., 2016). Therefore, the companies must think about innovations and provide unique products to the customers. If a company can differentiate properly, it will surely give high competition to the competitors.
The best strategy for the company: Cost leadership strategy will be the best strategy for Bahri if it wants to give a competitive advantage to its competitors such as Frontline, Sovcomflot, and Torm. All the companies deal with the same services. If Bahri can provide shipping service and crude oil at a lower price., the company will be surely benefited. As the service and products of Bahri are also famous in the global market, the company can gain a huge market share (Voronkova et al., 2017). Cost leadership strategy will also improve the market penetration of the company along with customer satisfaction.
4. Technology involved
Bahri has an excellent IT infrastructure so that entire shipping management can be done effectively. All the business activities including transport and logistics are maintained with the help of this technology system of Bahri (Cheburet&Odhiambo-Otieno, 2016). All the required elements of IT infrastructure such as hardware, software, information security, the network should be maintained very well. The elements of the technology system of Bahri has been discussed below
Hardware infrastructure: If the hardware infrastructure of the company is analysed, it can be found that the hardware elements used in the system are of high quality. Hardware elements include servers, datacentres, routers, switches, and other physical equipment (Rainer, Watson & Prince, 2013). The company has two datacentres that maintain the entire process of data collection and data processing. Both of the datacentres ate situated in Saudi Arabia and both have different responsibilities. One of the datacentres is required to manage the activities of local business and another one is expected to manage the business activities of the global business of the company. A centralized hardware system is used in the company so that all the hardware elements can be processed from a single location.
Software infrastructure: The company uses separate software for each of the business units such as crude oil, logistics, and chemicals. All the software is designed by experts and can be changed if required. An only a limited number of employees can use the software. Linus is used here as the operating system so that all the required information can be used effectively. The content management system of the company is highly appreciated as a backup of data is available here daily (Pozdniakov et al., 2018). The OS if the system is responsible for managing system resources and hardware and makes the relation between all the physical resources and software applications. Telecommunication: The telecommunication infrastructure of the company is also based on the requirements of the company. The fifth-generation mobile network is used by Bahri to make good communication with the outer world. The company is thinking about having its satellite for making improvements in the logistics system but due to lack of infrastructure, the process has not started yet. Submarine cables are also an important part of the telecommunication infrastructure of the company (de Camargo Fiorini&Jabbour, 2017). As the company deals with crude oil and crude oil products, the submarine cable is a must for the company.
Information security: Without proper information security, the IT infrastructure of the company will not be effective. With the advancement of technology, the security concern of cyberattacks is also increasing. Bahri has to deal with several clients all over the world. The threat of cyber-attack cannot be avoided by the company. The only thing that can be done is maintaining proper security. The company has a cloud server so that the information about the company can be kept secure. The backup system of data is also available to retain the lost data (Eroshkin et al., 2017). Recently, the company has also increased its security services to avoid DDoS attacks.
Network infrastructure: Network elements are also an important part of the entire IT infrastructure of the company. It helps the company to make long term relationship with the customers. Wide Area Network (WAN) is used by the company so that the information can be stored from all over the world (Zhang, 2020). It also helps to maintain the transparency of IT-related activities in the organization. Category 5 Ethernet cables are used in the organization to connect the wired networks while the wireless networks use radio signals to connect the nodes of the network.
5. Analysis of the Existing System
The IT infrastructure that is implemented in Bahri is good and there are a number of systems that are implemented in the organizations. There are certain issues that are determined with the IT systems and tools that are currently deployed at the business firm.
The organization has two data centres and both of these are located in Saudi Arabia. One of these manages the data associated with the local business and the other comprises of the data of the global business (Kenneth, 2019). There are integrity risks and issues that may arise. It is essential that the data sets are in sync with each other. However, due to the presence of the separate data centres, it is possible that there are gaps in the data updates that may occur. The hardware system that is implemented in the organization is the centralised system. With the centralised system, the fault tolerance of the hardware components will be low. Any of the faults or risks associated with the hardware components can have disastrous impacts on the other components.
There are issues that are identified with the system and information security. The use of cloud servers and backup tools is done to protect and safeguard the data sets at all times. The organization has also taken measures to prevent the distributed denial of service attacks. However, these measures are not sufficient (Sadagopan, 2015). There are a large number of security risks and attacks that are developed by the malicious entities. The occurrence of the malware attacks or network-based security attacks may occur. The cloud servers are also exposed to a number of security vulnerabilities. These can result in the violation of the information properties associated with Bahri. The breaching and leakage of the information is common due to the cloud vulnerabilities. Such risks may take place along with the issues as network eavesdropping or spoofing attacks.
There are several IT tools and systems that are installed in the organization.
Functional Area Information Systems
There are a number of business units that are associated with Bahri. Some of these include crude oil, logistics, and chemicals. The separate information systems are set-up and installed for each of these units and functional areas. These information systems include the data sets associated with the specific unit. For example, the information system deployed for logistics comprise of the supplier details, stock & inventory details, warehouse updates, and likewise(An & Lee, 2015). The information systems provide the ability to view the status of all of these sub-areas. The data can be fed in, retrieved, and updated with the use of these information systems.
Transaction Processing System
The automated transaction processing systems are installed in Bahri that carry out the execution and automated processing of the transactions carried out internally and externally. The transaction updates can be viewed and acquired from the system and there are a number of reports that can also be extracted from the system. The transaction reports assist the management and leadership to develop the business strategies(Mahato& Singh, 2018). Also, the overall progress is also tracked and monitored with the use of these transaction processing systems.
There are a number of communication tools and mediums that are used by Bahri so that the effective sharing of information can be done. The use of the automated communication systems is done in the organization that includes the use of the 5G networks for telecommunications(Dobroliubova et al., 2019). The use of the submarine cables is also done by the organization so that the easy flow of the information can be done. The use of web-based communication tools is also done in the organization that allows the resources to share the information sets.
6. Possible Solutions & Suggestions
The IT infrastructure of Bahri comprises of numerous useful tools and systems. There are some of the latest technologies that are also implemented along with the use of the security tools. However, there are certain improvements that can be made in the IT infrastructure so that the effective usage can be done without any compromises on the data security aspects. The following recommendations are provided to Bahri to make sure that the effective use of the IT tools and systems is done.
There are some of the basic and advanced security controls that are deployed in Bahri. However, with the development of technology and increase in the use of the cloud-based systems & networks, there are new forms of security attacks that may occur. It is, therefore, recommended for Bahri to make use of data encryption as a security technique. The encryption of the data sets in both the data centres and cloud servers shall be done(Choudhury&Kirubanand, 2018). This will ensure that the attackers do not succeed in misusing the data even if they succeed in capturing the information in an unauthorized manner.
There are a large number of data encryption protocols and algorithms that are developed. The use of advanced encryption standard and hash functions shall be done by Bahri. These will make sure that the information security is maintained at all times. There are a lot of information sets that are exchanged over the network channels. These network mediums are exposed to a lot of vulnerabilities. The use of encryption will make sure that the safe data exchange occurs over the networking channels(Salimath, 2016).
Bahri is a leading transportation and logistics company in Saudi Arabia. However, there is a lot of competition in the industry. It is essential for the businesses to always maintain an edge in the market. In order to do so, the organization must be aware of the real-time market trends and customer preferences. Also, the security issues that may occur on the IT systems must be avoided at all times.
The use of BI is recommended as the technological solution to all of these aspects. The use of automated data analysis of the market data and other organization information will provide Bahri with the information on the associated trends and patterns(Dedic&Stanier, 2017). There are certain changes in the customer preferences and requirements that also take place frequently. The competitor firms also keep coming with the new strategies and decisions. The BI tools will enable Bahri to keep a track of all of these updates. It will enable the organization to regulate the transportation and logistics activities so that the enhanced customer satisfaction levels can be achieved.
The use of BI is also suggested for the maintenance ofinformation security. The predictive and descriptive analytics can be carried out using the BI tools. The possible information security attacks and risks on the basis of the existing vulnerabilities will be possible. Bahri will get the ability to keep a track of the information sets and understand all of the patterns trends involved. It will also enable the identification of the intruder attempts and the suspicious activities (Davenport, 2018). These findings will provide the organization with the ability to put a check on the security violations and issues. The BI technologies will also provide Bahri with the ability to manage massive pieces of data and information. The use of data warehouses and data analytics tools will enable the effective storage, analysis, and management of the information.
The information systems and technology has become an integral part of the business organizations in the present times. There are numerous information systems that are used and implemented in Bahri. Some of these include the transaction processing systems, functional area information systems, and others. There are certain issues that are identified with these information systems and technologies. There are security risks and loopholes that can be witnessed. Also, the use of centralized hardware can lead to the reduced fault tolerance. There are steps and measures that are suggested and can be used in the organization. The use of data encryption is recommended as the security technique to keep the data sets protected at all times. Business Intelligence shall also be used in the organization and it will include the analysis of the information and data sets. The development of the market plan and strategies, determination of the competitor activities, and the prediction of the information security & privacy risks will be possible with the use of the BI tools and systems.
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