This proposal relates to the development of an e-commerce site for Computerworld limited, a small enterprise computer hardware reseller. The company has a small capital base but with great potential as regards growth opportunities. There is great demand for computer hardware due to its usability in all aspects of human life; from the education, engineering, commercial and even social domains. In this proposal, Computerworld would like to position itself strategically so as to be the market leader in the retail sales of computer hardware. This will be achieved by expanding the market and improved customer service through an e-commerce website.
Computerworld e-commerce system
The project is expected to be carried out for a period of 12 months
- To provide another platform for trading by Computerworld through online sales.
- To create market awareness for hardware products of Computerworld with the purchasing avenues available.
- To provide better customer service through improved customer support services.
- To create a new advertising line for the company products
- Provide information about the Computer to prospective customers and other stakeholders.
- To extend the service hours to beyond normal working time consequently being convenient to customers.
Computerworld is a growing small enterprise dealing with computer hardware and with the increasing demand for their products; the company is considering an e-commerce segment to be its strategic option for expanding its market and improving on its customer experience. Computerworld’s contribution to the Information technology industry will be invaluable hence the company has opted for the growth of its business as a means of meeting different stakeholders’ needs. With the e-commerce website, the company anticipates achieving an improved customer service experience and increased sales. The website will be designed to have the market awareness, customer support, online sales, advertising and Computerworld information. With this features in the design specification for the website, the company will achieve competitive edge through cost saving and efficiencies of e-commerce facility (Chaffey, 2008). This website will not only be off benefit to the customers and the company but also to the whole industry and other business enterprises in the same category. It is therefore very critical that this e-commerce model for small enterprises should be developed as a case study for other small and micro enterprises.
The project administration is very able as regards e-commerce project implementation and general business acuity. This therefore indicates that the project successful implementation rating is almost 100% successful. The business analyst who is the project team leader has wide experience in the area of e-commerce system implementation.
Problem and justification
Computerworld e-commerce is one project that is very critical not only for the general growth of the business of Computerworld but also for the general leadership example this company is going to give in the micro and small enterprises sector of the economy. With the current technologies to support e-commerce in place, most business organizations should be more than willing to fully institute e-commerce applications else risk being out of business (Schniederjans, 2002). This proposal therefore is not just for the interest of the Computerworld stakeholders but also for the sake of the commercial and trading industry.
The project will bring in much synergy for the computer industry where purchases of the computer equipment will be facilitated by the use of the same technology. Support information will be freely available in the e-commerce website therefore facilitating customer to customer marketing and advertising because very convenient services.
The project will expand business working hours to a 24 hours economy consequently enabling great customer experience, flexibility and convenience. The website will be online throughout the season unlike traditional office working hours where service was only for less than twelve hours. This will not only increase sales but also allow convenience to be on the customers’ end therefore allowing him/her to feel that he’s very important to Computerworld. This kind of customer relationship will be a source of competitive advantage to the company.
Electronic commerce as a growing business culture and environment is generally no longer an option to be ignored or taken. It is indeed one area where serious entrepreneurs will have to appreciate wholly else risk being obsolete in their business. Most companies must be planning of when to implement e-commerce solutions and not whether to take or not. With global shift by most business enterprises, competition is bound to increase. It therefore necessary for business enterprises to appreciate this technology since it gives them global business presence and competitive edge.
Computerworld has to prepare to meet increased demand due to the proposed e-commerce website. This is due to the fact that with increase business hours of 24 hours, increased sales are expected. Also other services like better customer experience, consisted product information and after sales online customer support will add to the growth of customer demand.
With the integration of financial institutions products and the e-commerce systems more customers will be able to carry out purchases of products online using different online payment services. This experience will make customers attached to clients who will offer products online and gives them the opportunity to purchase whenever they feel like. This e-commerce systems are not labor intensive and it is therefore one of the best solution to deteriorating quality of work life. The systems only does require monitoring hence the working hours can be reduced, giving time for family people to stay with their children.
Currently most successful commercial enterprises have e-commerce systems in place. The design of these e-commerce solutions’ will depend on the company’s competitive strategy and the nature of business (Bocij, 2008). Brand awareness model, cost saving, promotion model and info-mediary model are the most commonly used models. For the case of Computerworld the core guiding principle is increased profitability through better customer service and increased sales. This can be achieved by ensuring that out e-commerce system will include a product promotion module, online sales and customer support. This will ensure that Computerworld will achieve its strategic objectives.
The main objective of the Computerworld e-commerce project is to enhance the profitability of Computerworld through increased market, wider working hours, better customer service, increased sales and advertising cost saving. The project will therefore support the organization in achieving its core objective of increasing shareholders wealth.
- Enlarge the product market and service hours through online global presence
- To provide better customer service through convenient online sales and online support.
- To market the products of Computerworld through consistent web information.
- To improve on products and service delivery through customer feedback from the website.
To achieve the above objectives the proposed project implementation will be very much stakeholders driven. Computerworld end users and expected customer expectations will be collected through a user requirements analysis by the project leader. This information will be very critical for the system to be widely accepted internally. Collaboration with experts of e-commerce systems, Computerworld bankers, legal professionals, auditors and other critical stakeholders will be incorporated to ensure that the overall design of the project is in compliance with the legal and operational environment requirements.
Business analyst will be able to engage different stakeholders in order to discuss requirements which the system might not be able to deliver and other which he/she feels should be included in the design of the system (Drossos, 2009).The project will be designed to uphold the privacy of the users and customers. The project will include development of modern security features to protect the system from malicious damage of data and eavesdropping. People accessing confidential information in the system will have to sign confidentiality agreements with the company.
Training on the system shall be very thorough so that the internal users shall be able to extract the information accurately. Online users shall find the necessary guidelines on the system usage. For the successful project implementation, Computerworld has already recruited a business analyst who will be the project team leader. The internal expert has prior experience in the implementation of an e-commerce system and this makes the organization well position to carry on with the project immediately funds are made available.
Results and dissemination
The project documentations shall available for reference only by stakeholders in the development process. The security information however will accessed only be the developers and the administrators. This will ensure that the system security protocols will not be compromised (Khosrowpour, 2001). Lessons learned from the whole process shall be compiled and will be made available to any institution in the industry with interest in the same system development.
The software shall be the property of Computerworld limited and this shall be protected under the copyright act. Copyright protects the website and the program and unless with the express authority of Computerworld no other party shall be allowed to customize it. The domain name will be the property of the Computerworld and no other organization worldwide will be allowed to use the same domain name.
Institutions and personnel
Computerworld is currently looking for a strategic partner to assist in the financing of the project. Most of the project implementation roles will be handled by Computerworld since the project will first try to fulfill its business requirements and further industry players will be consulted in areas where industry standard will be required. Currently the service providers have not yet been identified but this will be determined after clear terms of reference and the system requirements documentation has been done.
Timetable and budget
The following is the proposed timetable for the project.
The proposed budget will be based on the activities and is a follows. Computerworld is looking for a strategic partner to share the budget cost on a 50:50 basis.
|Activity||Amount in $|
|Business Requirements Analysis||1000|
|Selection of service providers||180000|
This project requires evaluation through systems audit done by an information systems auditor. The audit will report on the sufficiency of the systems as regards the business requirement and also the security environment. The evaluation process will ensure that the system is up to the required standards as regards security and functioning hence essential to Computerworld.
Bocij, P., & Chaffey, D.(2008). Business Information Systems: Technology, Development and Management. Boston, MA: FT Prentice Hall.
Chaffey, D. (2008). E-business and e-commerce management: strategy, implementation, and practice. Boston, MA: FT Prentice Hall.
Drossos, L. (2009). Digital Rights Management for E-Commerce Systems. Hershey, PA: IGI Global snippet.
Khosrowpour, M. (2001). Managing information technology in a global economy. Hershey, PA: Idea Group Publishing.
Schniederjans, J., & Cao, Q. (2002). E-Commerce operations management. New Jersey, NJ: World Scientific.
Appendix 1: E-commerce Web site design: strategies and models