Improving business systems and subsystems riordan manufacturing case study

Improving Business Systems and Subsystems: Riordan Manufacturing Case Study Jamie Franklin, Justin Perrine, Eric Kambestad and Kayode Tomoloju Business Systems/BSA 310 University of Phoenix Instructor: Tom Swanson PhD, PMP. November 8, 2009 Introduction The Chief Executive Officer of Riordan Manufacturing in a service Request SR-rm-012 requested a summary evaluation that will lead to improvement on all level of Business systems and Subsystems that is currently in place at Riordan Manufacturing.

This paper shall review existing Business Systems and Subsystems and proffer necessary suggestions that will lead to improvement and will help to streamline and consolidate business operation in the company. First there is need to provide some insight and preamble of Riordan Manufacturing business structure, the nature of the company’s business and the type s of operating business systems and subsystems in use across all departments of the company. Riordan is a fortune 1000 and a current leader in the manufacturing of plastic injection molding.

The company has three location facilities in USA and one in Peoples Republic of China. The company is noted manufacturing products, which includes medical stent, customs plastics parts, heart valves and plastic bottles. The greatest business Systems challenges Riordan is facing is that the various entities of the company currently operate on different information systems and subsystems, which tend to create bottleneck in data management process of the entire company.

An overview of the current business systems used in Riordan Manufacturing are as follows: At the Corporate office in San Jose, the company have in place a fully integrated window based enterprise resource planning (ERP) software for manufacturing, distribution and financial, the Georgia facility operate on a AS4000’s with UNIX operating system on PC’S (Windows) as workstations with RPG400 capability. In addition, Michigan plant is run on a pair of DEC Alphas system.

It is therefore pertinent that Riordan Manufacturing use of multiple business system will lead to complexity in data management, which imperatively will result in disparity of reports across all departments of the organization and the company at large. Henceforth to ensure effectiveness of various business information systems in the company, especially processing data related to customers, suppliers, and other financial records in the company, there is need for improving in the current business systems in place at Riordan.

This paper shall henceforth evaluate the current information systems and subsystems used for business purpose across the spectra of the company. Focus will be on mission statement of the organization and the use of internet to propagate the business. How effective and efficient the finance and accounting systems in place help the company to maximize time and money, what type of Human resources and Legal system is the company deploying and also how effective is the Sales and Marketing systems Riordan have in place as well as the company’s operating system.

Having a vivid understanding of the existing business systems and subsystems used in the company will help in proffering suggestion that ultimately will lead to improving the standard and implementation of the company’s information systems, which will result in sustainable growth in Riordan manufacturing company. Identifying and describing the existing and needed Mission and internet systems and subsystems. The mission statement of Riordan Manufacturing is to be an industry leader by using polymer materials to provide solutions to their customer’s challenges.

In order to achieve this objective the company sought to embark on research and development (R&D) project by identifying the industry trend with specific focus on how it will strive to be a solution provider to the customers by creating a long term relationships with them. The company also envisages that there is need for responsive business altitude and competitive pricing. At the Human Resources level, Riordan Manufacturing sought to maintain an innovative and team oriented working environment.

The essence of this goal is to make sure that employees are well informed and supported accordingly so as to achieve a long term viability growth, that ultimately will assure financial and human capital and result to sustainable growth. For the company to attain this goal it thus become imperative that Riordan must a comparative technological advantage in the way and manner it implement, manage and deploy its information systems and subsystems.

One cannot discuss the way the company uses the internet without referring to the equally to the use of the intercommunication systems of Riordan, that is the internet A web search of Riordan Manufacturing home page revealed numerous information about the company. The site provides latest information regarding current industrial trend in the company, information about mergers and acquisitions, analysis of Riordan growth, how the company uses existing IT hardware and security protocols.

Suffices to say that little is mention in this internet site on how to communicate to customers in lieu of sales and marketing of the company’s products, brand development, sales force promotion, price discount and other form of customer relationships management tools. In essence, there is need for the company to have in place a Dream weaver-new page design that will provide more information about the company’s goal, mission statement and internet based customer oriented software that will facilitate the process of doing business with the company.

It is essential in this new economy age for any company to emphasize technological advancement especially the use of the internet to promote it goods or service to prospects or intending customers. Use the worldwide web to reach out customers, thus increases the customer base for the company. Riordan manufacturing should explore this strategy to reach out to broad based customers. The intranet as well needs some modification. Bearing in mind that each location has its own network configuration, there is need for identical configuration in order to facilitate efficiency in the company. There is need for a TCP/IP to hold the network together, having in place a SNMP will help the company to manage its network infrastructure effectively, a FTP for WAN/LAN is thus considered as necessary for wide file transfers and DNS without any doubt will be a great application for the company name resolution. It is equally important that China plant replace the three, 24-port hubs in use with 24-port switches, at Pontiac there is need to replace the 4 hubs and 3 patch panels with four 24 port switches and San Jose should as well replace the 24-port hub with a 24 port switches.

This strategy will ensure uniformity in the company’s infrastructure. Identifying and describing existing Finance and Accounting business systems and subsystems Taking cognizance of the fact that Riordan Manufacturing has three operating entities in Georgia, Michigan and California, with additional one in China, the greatest challenge in operating the company’s Finance and Accounting (F&A) department lies in the fact that each entity operates on different business information system and subsystems that makes consolidation cumbersome at the corporate office.

First, there is need to enumerate the basic components and functions performed by each systems within the various entities of the company. That is to say how General ledger is been process, procedure for account payable and account receivable, method used in order entry procurement, sales and purchasing as well as payroll, bar coding reading and Executive decision support system implementation. Riordan Manufacturing currently has a complicated way to consolidate data and information at the center.

For instance, the corporate office in San Jose operates a fully integrated window based enterprise software application designed for plastic process that unlicensed for application source code. At the Michigan entities there is in place a Finance and Accounting VMS operating system that is run on a VAX4000 workstation, although it is equipped with application source code, but unfortunately the vendor to this system is out of business, therefore making maintenance very difficult.

At the Georgia plant, Finance and accounting functions operate on a pair of AS400’s UNIX systems with PC’s window as workstation on RPG4000. This situation caused by complication of varied systems at various entities of the company makes it difficult to achieve remote resembling and compatibility to the corporate systems. This thus results in conversion, reentry and redirecting of data via data files and hardcopy reports, which invariably become time consuming, coast inefficient because of the use of manual labor in processing data.

For example, general ledger and income statement takes 15 to 20 days to consolidate at the end of the month. Inventory audit as well become a monthly activity and, for the company to abide with new government requirement apparently become more difficult to consolidate. Therefore, to achieve an efficient and effective consolidation of Financial and Accounting obligation at Riordan Manufacturing, there is need for institutionalization of the same business and operating systems and subsystems throughout the various entities of the company.

Identifying and describing the existing and needed Human Resources and Legal Business systems Riordan’s Human Resources information system (HRIS) started in 1992 as part of a financial package. This system helps to track specific information for each employee within the company. The information related to personal data, pay rate, personal exemption, date of hire, seniority and employee’s role in the organization is recorded in the HRIS. The Human resources information system is manually entered into excel spreadsheets in the computer’s computer system.

This is time consuming, especially for a company aiming to become a market leader in the industry. The idea of implementing a new Human Resources system would have multiple advantages at Riordan. First by using the same type of information systems software across all human resources departments in the various company entities, there will be uniformity in employee’s information. This, thus help the company to have information flowing seamlessly between departments.

The second advantage for such uniformity in business system at the human resources level is that it will be easier to up-date employee’s records. A third advantage would be an automated key processing, that would save employee time and in return save the company money. We cannot also ignore the fact that accessing information will thus become an easy task with this kind of HRIS system in place. The current system, which uses the bare minimum requirement of payroll, benefit and taxing information, only track employees by pay and not by performance.

Having a new system to track every aspect of employee’s relationship to the company will ensure accurate evaluation of employee’s progress in the company. While Riordan Manufacturing has a Chief Legal counsel that oversees all Legal matters in the company, Riordan still contract out all legal matters such as litigation, tax issues and real estate matters to the Legal firm of Litteral and Finkel. In order to ensure efficiency in Legal matters the Litteral and Finkel is directly supervised by the company Chief Legal counsel.

Riordan Manufacturing pays a monthly retainer to this firm to ensure a prompt response to all Legal matters. At the end of the month, all Legal fees are deducted from the retainer and if the amount is in excess of the retainer, the company is billed for whatever the balance is. The suggested recommendation to improve the performance of the company is for Riordan to have its own legal staff, that is to say employ group of counsels that will be in the payroll of the company and headed by the Chief Legal counsel.

The advantage of this proposition is that the counsel will be part of the company and they will have better understanding of the company’s goals and objectives and can always address all litigation, tax issues and, real estate matter and even employees grievances in a timely manner. Identifying and describing existing and needed Sales and Marketing business systems and subsystems Riordan Manufacturing is currently using a filling cabinet in the marketing department to store all archived data.

Although this files are stored in the central location at San Jose, but the true still remain that they are not secure and could be susceptible to fire, flood or even theft. In the past, most sales data in Riordan Manufacturing are recorded using paper and pencil, such data includes, date of order, date of delivery and payments. This are as well accomplished through manual process. Other areas of sales and marketing that uses manual labor process include unit and dollar volume of products and daily sales record.

This process obviously lead to disparity in databases of the company. Riordan has since then be considering a technological approach to eliminate this process. To eliminate this waste of time strategy use in data input, it would be suggested that the company embark on a CRM software system. This information systems technological based approach will lead to efficient in the company by increasing sales to existing customer and increase the number of new customers as projected over the next 2 years by the company.

There is also need for product promotions; competitive pricing and development of marketing plans that will solely based on the use of information systems technologies, with specific emphasis on public relations, sales promotions, trade shows and a viable customer relationship strategy. In the light of this, new customer relationship management (CRM) software can be deployed by the company to help consolidate the company’s sales and marketing goals.

This system will also facilitate the collection of customer information needed by the sales and marketing department as a potential tool to ensure and foster good interaction between the company and their customers. In essence, The CRM software will also lead to customer loyalty and allow sales representative to access their customer’s record from time to time. Without any doubt, if the company can effectively enforce the deployment of this versatile marketing tool, the company is close to attaining its $50 million ollar mark by saving time and money and moving a step further to be the leader of the market in the said industry. Thakur et al asserted, “CRM has emerged as a potentially powerful business strategy. The best part, however, is yet to come. CRM should become deeply ingrained as a business strategy rather than as a tactic Technology will advance, but it must be integrated into strategy as it becomes available. ” (Thakur et al. 2006).

This statement goes a long way to confirm deployment of CRM by Riordan Manufacturing Company across all existing entities of the organization will increase the customer base of the company. Identifying and describing existing and needed operating business systems and subsystems Riordan manufacturing as earlier stated varied operating systems across the company locations: The Georgia plant, the Michigan facility, San Jose corporate office and the Peoples Republic of China entity, this complexity of operating systems remain a big hindrance to data management in the company.

And it thus affect all segment of the company operation including the manufacturing section, the Finance and Accounting, the Human Resources, sales and marketing department and other related section of the company. It is factual that data management process in Riordan has always been cost inefficient because of the unnecessary complexity caused by this situation. Having understood that some of the plants are acquired by the company.

It is still important to unify the information systems and subsystems used in the company to achieve the main goal of the company in area of production efficiency, cost of production reduction, building viable customer oriented relationship and increasing the company profitability. However, if the corporate office of the company continues to operate on a fully integrated window based ERP manufacturing, distribution, and Finance and Accounting are operating system.

Moreover, at the Georgia plant Riordan Manufacturing retain the AS4000s UNIX operating system, which is run on PC (Windows) workstations and uses RPG to accomplish processing task. On the other hand the Michigan plant continue to operate it facility on a pair of DEC Alphas with VMS operating systems, it thus become imperative that this multiple operating systems in place at Riordan Manufacturing company will definitely experience data redundancy in the course of processing information. This will as well lead to report disparity across all department of the company.

If Riordan Manufacturing want to achieve considerable success in information management it become important for the company to upgrade all it entities operating systems and subsystems. The only option for the company is a deployment of a unified enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, which have the versatility to perform multiple functions across all entities and departments of the company. The same ERP software used in the corporate office should be the same model use in China, Michigan and Georgia.

Conclusion After critically reviewing, describing and proffering needed improvement in lieu of the various business systems and subsystems in Riordan manufacturing company. There is no doubt that if the company management applied systematically the various suggestions offered for improving, the company will increase its productivity, reduce it cost of production, offer competitive price to it customer, increase it customer base and ultimately increase it profitability.

References Riordan Manufacturing. Service Request SR-rm-012. Business Systems. Retrieved on November 7, 2009 from https://ecampus. phoenix. edu/secure/aapd/cist/VOP/Business/portBus. htm Tharkur, R. , Summey, J. H. , & Balasubramanian, S. K. (2006). CRM as a Strategy: Avoiding the Pitfall of Tactics. The Marketing Management Journal. 16(2), p. 147-154. .

Posted in Uncategorized