Given the dynamism of today’s market and the ever increasing degree of competition globally, produce a critical assessment of the role of IT in generating competitive advantage. Executive Summary The effects of globalization on organizations have been extensively studied by researchers and academics worldwide…
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In regard specifically to the business sector, the involvement of certain business tools and frameworks in the promotion of globalization seems to be extended. Reference can be made, for example, to the information systems, in all their forms. Information systems are highly related to globalization. Moreover, these systems are likely to be used by business worldwide as a tool for acquiring competitive advantage. The above role of information systems is presented in this paper. The Porter Five Forces model is used for explaining the involvement of information systems in the increase of business competitiveness, both locally and globally. Table of contents Executive Summary 2 1. Introduction 4 2. IT and competitive advantage 4 2.1 Effects of globalization on business – information systems and their relationship to globalization 4 2.2 Business processes and their relationship to information systems 7 2.3 Evaluation of the use of information systems as tools for increasing business competitiveness – Porter’s Five Forces model 10 3. Conclusion 12 References 14 Appendix 15 1. Introduction Aligning business processes with organizational objects is one of the most critical challenges that organizational leaders worldwide have to face. On the other hand, business processes are not standardized. Rather, they have to be changed continuously so that they can keep the organizational competitiveness high. Information systems can be considered as a tool that help business processes to achieve the above target. In practice, the use of information systems in organizations has been related to globalization. This view can be considered as justified if taking into consideration the following fact: information systems have been expanded across business activities of all sectors mostly because certain businesses have emphasized on the particular systems. Since the role of information systems in enhancing organizational profits and improving businesses processes has been made clear, the popularity of these systems worldwide has been increased. The relationship between information systems and globalization is examined in this paper. Particular emphasis is given on the potential use of information systems for achieving competitive advantage. It is proved that, indeed, information systems can play such role. However, it is necessary for the involvement of these systems in organizational activities to be carefully planned and monitored, otherwise the relevant plan will be led to a failure, either in the short or the long term. 2. IT and competitive advantage 2.1 Effects of globalization on business – information systems and their relationship to globalization. The high value of information systems for the development of business activities cannot be ignored. In order to understand the involvement of information systems in modern organizations it would be necessary to refer primarily to the effects of globalization on businesses; then, the role of information systems in supporting business activities could be understood. Modern market is characterized by a ‘global integration’ (Walker 2004, p.171). This means that a firm can survive in the global market only if it is able to strengthen its processes so that they can secure the firm’s competitiveness towards its rivals (Walker 2004, p.171). At the same time, Doole and Lowe (2005) that globalization has set a new challenge for all businesses: instead of trying to keep their existing market position,
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