New technology comes with several challenges. The introduction of a new technology is usually followed by certain measures that will ensure that the risks that come with it are taken into consideration. Work force training and uncertainty of its significance are just a few of the many challenges that accompany the introduction of new technologies. General Electric is a famous company that has been in existence for a long time (Regan & O’Connor, 2002). The aim of this paper is to take a critical look at the process and implication of the introduction of new technologies in companies. The challenges ands risks that come with the introduction of new technologies will also be evaluated. Special reference will be given to the General Electric Company. The paper will discuss how the company introduced a new technology and the events that followed the introduction.
The introduction of online storage area network at Veterans Affairs Medical Centre by GE has been considered as a major breakthrough as far as technology is concerned. This is due to the convenience that surrounds the inception of the technology. Patient data can now be accessed conveniently. However the technology came with a set of responsibilities and obligations. First and foremost the company had to train its staff to work with the new technology (Volti 2005). This was the major hurdle since all workers were only familiar with the manual system of recording patient data. As such, the new technology was strange to them and none of the employees could operate the machines. Therefore the company had to invest a lot of capital and time in training the employees so as to be compatible with the new technology. This was to involve some costs which would be an inconvenience to the company since it had not planned for the exercise. Another major hurdle that the company had to face was the uncertainty that came with the new technology. The operations and activities of the company changed drastically with its introduction. This was due to the newness of the system of operation. The general performance of the company was affected due to the mistakes that were made by employees who were trying to familiarize themselves with the invention. The process of adapting to the change in technology also involved other different aspects of change. The recruitment of high technological personnel was another major feature of this change (National Academies 1996). This became necessary since the online storage area network required technology savvy individuals to run the system and oversee the process. As a result the company had to recruit new employees that were conversant with the new technology. The environment of the organization consequently changed so as to reflect the new technology. This was due to the discarding of old methods of storage for patients. The purchases of new technology machines and gadgets became necessary. Several departments and sections of the company had also to be restructured so as to embrace the new technology. The customer service department for instance had to change so as to make use of technology during enquiries.
The technology causing GE to move from the present state to the desired future so as to increase effectiveness was the storage and retrieval of patient information. This involved both the technological capability as well as organizational abilities. However the change of technology also involved a change in human resources. This was due to the training of human resources so as to reflect the change of technology. At the same time, new employees had to be recruited so as to operate the new technology. The change of technology had a lot of changes in the organization. Therefore the change of technology involved different aspects of change for the organization. First and foremost is the impact on human resources. Due to the change in technology it became necessary for the organization to make certain changes in its human resources. This took two dimensions, the training of existing employees to take part in the use of new technology. Secondly was the recruitment of new employees with expertise in the use of the new technology. These were considered crucial for the success of the implementation of the acquired technology. The functional business resources of the organization were also affected by the change of technology. This primarily involves the implications of the technology change to the resources of the organization. The technology so acquired required several changes in the resources of the organization and their functioning. As a result the organization had to acquire new resources on one hand and also alter the functioning of the existing ones. Another crucial aspect in the change was technological capability. The technology so acquired had to be ascertained so as to evaluate its operation and utility. The process involved quite a number of processes. First and foremost was the understanding that the new technology brought about change in a particular aspect. The change so brought had to be compared with the current applications. This was done so as to determine the additional benefit to be derived from the new technology. Finally the aspect of organizational capabilities had a lot of implications on the introduction of the new technology. This took the form of evaluating the current operations and capabilities of the organization in relation to the projected capabilities of the introduced technology.
New technologies change the way organizations operate. The introduction of new technology comes with a different set of changes that must take place so as to reflect the new technology. An organization seeking to introduce new technology must be prepared to navigate through the process so as to make the new technology applicable. The paper has discussed the process of introducing new technologies in organizations. The implications involved have also been discussed; special reference has been given to General Electric Company.
- National Academies. (1996). Airline passenger security screening: new technologies and implementation issues. Washington: National Academies.
- Regan, A. & O’Connor, N. (2002). End-user information systems: Implementing individual and work group technologies. (2nd ed.) New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, Inc.
- Volti, R. (2005). Society and Technological Change. New York: Worth Publishers.