Nov 8, 2017 in Analysis

Organizational Productivity of the Retail Sector in UK

Information technology refers to a field of engineering that involves the application of computers and software in storing, retrieving, and transmitting information (Baschab & Piot 2007). This technology has grown gradually in many parts across the world. It has been evident that computer technology is extremely significant in achieving various activities, especially in enhancing the productivity of their businesses due to increased efficiency, accuracy, as well as reduced time (Brynjolfsson & Saunders 2010). Organizational productivity serves as a significant economic measure of the contribution of Information Technology to organizations. Researchers have done a thorough investigation on the relationship between organizational productivity and influences of Information Technology. According to many researchers, those organizations that have adopted Information Technology successfully, experience considerable productivity and profitability (Kunsoo, Young Bong, & Jungpil 2011).

            Organizations in the United Kingdom have adopted information technology, such as the RFID technology, to make different operations efficient. The use of RFID technology started in the clothing stores of the Marks & Spencer Company in UK (Ramage 2007). However, some people argue that Information Technology does not have a positive relationship with organizational productivity. They claim that organizations do not depend on Information Technology for increased productivity. Instead, they argue that Information Technology declines organizational productivity because many people do not have enough experience on its application.

            Therefore, the productivity paradox has been a debatable topic, which has encouraged many researchers to explore the relationship between productivity and Information Technology (Lucas 1999). Measurements on the value and output of information technology may involve ineffective research tools, which lead to undependable results. However, as researchers conduct more research, the relationship between organizational productivity and information technology will be clear to people in the United Kingdom. People can confidently embrace information technology in their organizations after recognizing that it has a positive influence on productivity.  This paper will consider the problem statement, background, literature review, research questions, recommendations, and recommendations of the effects that information technology has on organizational productivity.

1.2 Problem Statement and Research Background

            Information technology has become a significant tool because of economic globalization, which is a common phenomenon in various countries across the world (Kunsoo, Young Bong, & Jungpil 2011). According to Kunsoo, Young Bong, & Jungpil (2011), globalization requires organizations to adopt techniques for seeking new markets, providing an efficient customer service, improving efficiency in production, and ensuring the quality of commodities and services meet the needs of customers in the contemporary society. Therefore, organizations in the present day may find information technology as an unavoidable tool for promoting success in organizational productivity. Many studies have provided information in the effects of information technology on organizational productivity, competitiveness, employment, work organization, and economic growth (Griffin & Moorehead 2011). Organizational competition has a significant effect on the productivity of organizations, which encourages various organizations to adopt advanced information for improved productivity. However, increased and improved productivity does not always lead to increased organizational profitability (Griffin & Moorehead 2011). This is because competition may lead to low prices of commodities and services, which erodes betterment in margins.

            Many people consider information technology as a tool that can facilitate rationalization because of the possibility to minimize human involvement. This is apparent that information technology enhances automation at different stages of production, which is cost effective, efficient, and effective. Information technology may enable many people to access information in addition to rationalization (Kunsoo, Young Bong, & Jungpil 2011). Informational aspects of information technology have a likelihood of empowering both employers and employees by facilitating the decision making process and performance of various chores. Information technology also possesses transformational characteristics because it promotes innovation of the production techniques in an organization (Schnoll 2010). An organization can transform its production strategies upon embracing information technology. People think that because of technological improvements, the value of commodities and services will be considerably high, which will attract many customers. Consumer surplus is a term that refers to this phenomenon of information technology (Hunter & Tan 2007).

            Information technology may be a useful resource like other capitals that increase customer satisfaction, economic growth and productivity (Hunter & Tan 2007). It may play a critical role in facilitating communication within an organization, between organizations, and between an organization and its clients, who serve as a market. Successful implementation of Business Process Reengineering (BPR) will ensure that information technology facilitates an organization’s communication services (Tesfaye & Atkilt 2011). Furthermore, the service provider of telecommunications services will be successful if it can dynamically meet the needs of customers and changes in technology and regulation.

            Organizational productivity grows when information technology leads to the development of modern work techniques (Griffin & Moorehead 2011). People started to use the computer technology in situations that experienced low productivity and high rates of unemployment, which was initially hard for organizations to prove the benefits of information technology investments. People referred to this phenomenon as productivity paradox because it was hard to recognize the benefits that information technology hard on productivity (Lucas 1999). However, in the present day, organizational-level studies in service and manufacturing sectors have enabled people to recognize the relationship between organizational productivity and information technology. Information technology may boost organizational productivity and the economy of various countries across the world (Kunsoo, Young Bong, & Jungpil 2011).

            This research considers the effects of information technology on organizational productivity in the United Kingdom. People need enough literature, which will enable them make a conclusion on whether information technology promotes improved organizational productivity or not. Information technology may have both advantages and hidden negative consequences, which the modern research techniques may not detect (Kunsoo, Young Bong, & Jungpil 2011). Researchers argue that people should consider information technology as a necessary tool of production only if it increases organizational productivity. For instance, operations should be efficient and cost effective for a substantial unit of production in an organization. Research shows that information technology can have a positive influence on organizational productivity only if employees can apply the technology effectively (Tambe, Hitt, & Brynjolfsson 2012). It has been apparent that information technology can lead to the decline of an organization’s business, especially when employees do not understand the effective usage of the technology. For example, an organization may run at a loss when the RFID technology receives wrong settings from the user (Ramage 2007). Unless the user of advanced technology is knowledgeable and accurate, information technology will be harmful to an organization. Therefore, it is necessary to confirm whether the effective use of information technology may have positive effects on the productivity of an organization and economy of a country (Griffin & Moorehead 2011). As the conclusions of research show that information technology ensures efficiency and accuracy in production, many organizations will embrace the technology for improved organizational productivity.

1.3 Motivation

            The main source of motivation for doing a research on the impacts of information technology, regarding organizational productivity, was to gain an understanding on the extent to which information technology can influence the productivity of an organization. Various organizations in UK have embraced the RFID technology, which has raised interest to know its effectiveness in enhancing organizational productivity (Zhang 2012). It has been a requirement to write a dissertation for the award of the Masters Degree.

            The research on the impacts of RFID technology on organizational productivity in UK is significant in a number of ways. It will provide an understanding on how RFID technology has affected the sales of clothes in various clothing stores of Marks & Spencer Company across UK. The conclusion due to this research will enable other organizations across the world to embrace or not to embrace the RFID technology. As the research depicts that RFID technology leads to the increase in organizational productivity, many organizations will sacrifice their resourced to implement this technology so that to be successful in their respective lines of production. Otherwise, organizations will not attempt to embrace this technology because of the significant negative effects on organizational productivity. It is most likely that RFID technology will increase the number of sales in those stores that embrace the technology (Ramage 2007).

            Finally, it would be significant to determine the perception of different people on the reengineering of business process in an organization. Some people may be against the idea of adopting new changes while others will desire the adoption of new changes. However, the adoption of information technology in any organizations will depend on whether the technology increases productivity or not (Kunsoo, Young Bong, & Jungpil 2011). This research would be a significant resource both to developing and developed nations because it will enable them understand the impacts of RFID technology on organizational productivity.

1.4 Research Questions

            Research questions are extremely necessary because they provide a clear guideline of the research on how information technology relates to organizational productivity (Punch 2006). The appropriate questions in this research’s scope are: Is there a relationship between organizational productivity and information technology in the United Kingdom? Does information technology benefit organizational productivity? Do organizations experience increased efficiency in their operations as a result of information technology? Will it be possible for advanced information to result in a decline in organizational productivity and deterioration of the economy of a country? This research will cover these questions with an attempt to show the relationship of information technology and organizational productivity.

1.5 Aims and Objectives

            Information technology has been common in many organizations across the world. The increase in volumes of commodities in the retail organizations calls for the use of information technology, which will facilitate the distribution of the commodities and increase sales (Altinkemer, Ozcelik, & Ozdemir 2011). Marks & Spencer Company is a retail organization in UK, which has many clothing stores, dealing with the distribution of a variety of clothes in UK and other regions across the world (Knights & Willmott 2007). This research is relevant in determining the potential of information technology, especially the RFID technology, in facilitating the distribution of commodities, as well as promoting security of commodities in stores. Aims of this research are:   

  1.                   i.            Acquire enough information on how the application of Radio Frequency Identification can enable retail organizations in UK increase their sales, which will have a significant effect on organizational productivity.
  2.                 ii.            Gain the capability to recommend the effectiveness, cost savings property, and efficiency of RFID in managing stocks and distribution of goods. Therefore, there will be a need to address the business needs of appropriate technology for increasing selling efficiency in large retail organizations.
  3.               iii.            Enhance accumulation of knowledge, which will contribute to the development of RFID technology in UK. The research will also inspire many retail organization owners to embrace information technology for increased organizational productivity. Advanced RFID technology will result from the presence of enough information on the weaknesses and strengths of the technology. Upon realizing the weaknesses, the companies that produce the RFID technology will make the necessary amendments and ensure that the technology is extremely effective and efficient.

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