سیستم های مدیریت استراتژی سازمانی : نسل کنونی و بعدی
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|323||2004||24 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : The Journal of Strategic Information Systems, Volume 13, Issue 2, July 2004, Pages 105–128
Strategic planning in the ‘post-net’ era creates new challenges for senior management, due to the need for faster speed of strategy planning and implementation, frequent, significant environmental changes, and more complex organizations. Enterprise strategy management (ESM) systems promise better planning support for senior management, but are still in their infancy. Present systems focus too much on quantitative aspects, and not enough on qualitative or process aspects of planning. The article reviews the landscape of strategic information systems for ESM, identifies their contributions, and derives the requirements for the next generation of ESM systems. It also reflects on IT opportunities beyond the next generation.
1.1. Strategic planning challenges in the ‘post-net’ era In the Spring of 2000, concerns grew among the senior management of a leading travel and tourism company in the United States. The company—one of the pioneers of electronic commerce—was losing valuation, while Internet startups were soaring. Major customers were not renewing their agreements, as competitor products threatened to erode the company's market position and its dominant role in managing one of the industry's supply chains. Not surprisingly, company management embarked on defining a new strategy. What was surprising was the speed of this undertaking: 3 months to formulate the strategy, and 6 months to implement it. For this e-commerce leader, rapid strategic transformation became the new (and successful) reality of managing in the ‘post-net’ era. This situation illustrates the realities faced by many companies today. Enterprise strategy management (ESM) in the post-net era is fundamentally more challenging than it used to be just a few years ago. Three clearly identifiable factors contribute to today's complexity increases: • Shorter planning and implementation cycles. • Frequent and rapid environmental changes, possibly with discontinuities. • Organization units that extend beyond a single company, such as supply chains or virtual organizations. Shorter planning and implementation cycles have been brought about by several factors, including competitive pressures from start-ups ( Kambil, 2000, Hamel, 1999 and Watts, 2002) and the availability of real-time or almost real-time information to manage the business (Anderson, 2002). In order to compete with start-ups, established companies have to adopt start-up agility in creating and changing business models. Strategy implementation cycles for start-ups are driven by yearly (or even shorter) funding cycles, and the constant evolutionary process of new business idea funding through venture capital. Similarly, post-net companies with their integrated enterprise information systems and on-line research capability gather data at ‘web speed’ (Van Yoder, 2001). As a result, they create pressures for all established firms to target strategy formulation and revision in short cycles ( Baum and Wally, 2003, Paul, 2000 and Hackett, 1998), or even as an ongoing activity. Environmental changes have always existed in the planners' realm. However, dotcom bubble and dotcom bust, as well as the recent worldwide economic uncertainties, are signs of changes that are frequent, impactful, and seemingly unpredictable. And while ex post most events will have had their precursors and indicators, ex ante, many are difficult to foresee or to gauge in their impact (Oliver, 2002). Today's organizations are significantly more complicated than they used to be. They are more distributed and networked, as supply chains, virtual organizations, or co-opetitive arrangements (Hamel et al., 1989). Should a supply chain define a unique strategy for itself? How would this be aligned with the strategies for each individual company in the supply chain? We do not even know many of the questions yet, let alone have a good answer for them. Taken together, these factors significantly raise the demands on strategic planning, as well as planning methodologies (Hitchin, 2002), highlighting the potential contribution of strategy planning tools, including software. Strategic planning cannot remain a one-off planning activity (sometimes referred to as a ‘ritual’) whose results remain in the heads of the planners (Hackett, 1998). Furthermore, future strategic planning exercises ignore the outcomes and findings from previous strategic planning activities. In other words, strategic planning has to change from a sequence of planning events to a business process, one that is ideally well-structured, iterative, and whose outputs are captured in organizational information systems, from which planning can be followed up by implementation, results measurement, and organizational learning (Fahy, 2002). 1.2. Need for enterprise strategy management software The problem is that available software tools cannot fulfill these demands. In 2001, AMR research noted that while business strategy is at the core of the planning methodology and software world, only few applications presently support this type of task (‘The Case for Automating Strategy’, AMR Research, February 20, 2001), and little has happened in the meantime to change this situation (Smith, 2002). In addition to the lack of appropriate software tools, research into information systems for strategic planning has been scarce as well, with the result that there are very few insights available, especially for the implementation of strategic management methods into software. Prominent exceptions include El Sawy, 1985, Avison et al., 1998 and Singh et al., 2002. But altogether, there is a significant research shortage in this area. Consequently, the purpose of this article is to explain current software-based strategy planning and implementation approaches, and to identify fruitful directions for future research and development in this area. The underlying question might be stated as ‘how to provide senior management with useful strategy planning and implementation tools that help in the entire process from (1) defining a vision and initiatives to achieve it, to (2) monitoring the results of strategic initiatives, to (3) defining and monitoring of adaptive measures when current objectives are not met?’ The article will investigate: • the nature of a useful strategy planning and implementation methodology; • the requirements for software that purposefully and methodologically supports the planning and implementation task. The position of this article will be as follows. In order to build a system and process as suggested, we will have to achieve the following. First, formulate strategic planning and strategy implementation as a business process, with clearly defined inputs, outputs, and activities whose completion results in obtaining the outputs. Second, create and implement both the workflow and data model for this process, so as to support the executives who carry out the planning task, and to capture the results of the tasks in a database. As an added difficulty, both process and data model need to be designed to be iterative and decomposable, so that they can be delegated and later rolled up again, thus enabling alignment. Third, define and create a measurement framework that can measure the level of vision implementation, can identify deviations, and can trigger the formulation of initiatives to correct deviations from the plan. A formal definition of processes and data, as implied by this direction, is not common in strategy management, as many planners consider the task to be unstructured and do not rely on a well-formulated methodology (see Avison et al. (1998)). However, without a well-defined methodology, there is little opportunity for formal planning, let alone information systems support. As a result, many planners in the past have relied on formal methods only for tasks such as budgeting, which was often the extent of ‘strategic planning’ (Gluck et al., 1980) or at least a large part of it (Hackett, 1998). In order to broaden software support for strategic planning beyond budgeting software, we need to explore the extent to which IS tools and techniques can possibly support a knowledge-rich, qualitative, and non-algorithmic planning and decision making task. This will be the focus of Section 2. Section 3 will contrast these ideas against the current state of software development, reviewing key capabilities of today's leading products. Section 4 follows up with a proposal for next generation ESM software. Section 5 reflects on a new paradigm for ESM software, beyond next generation solutions. Section 6 draws conclusions and summarizes our learning. The article is intended to offer the following insights: first, today's leading strategic information systems have not yet sufficiently addressed the issue of strategic planning and management, as evidenced by the gap between what strategic planning and management should be, and what today's software can support. Second, there is great potential for increased software support, but it requires a detailed and thorough analysis of the planning activities. Third, a feasible model for future ESM software will rely on the analytical intelligence of planners, and software tools to facilitate the process, to minimize process losses, and to amplify process gains. Throughout the article, any reference to ‘strategic information systems’ will refer to information systems that help in shaping the strategy as planning tools, rather than to information systems that define a company's business or generate a significant share of the bottom-line. However, for clarity, they will be frequently referred to as ESM systems. Further, any reference to the post-net era will not imply that the era of the Internet is over, but that we are in an era defined by widespread adoption of the Internet and the World Wide Web.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
ESM systems still lack the capabilities to support sophisticated strategic planning processes (i.e. Phase 3 or 4 in Gluck et al.'s (1980) model). There are several reasons for this situation. To some extent, planning systems have not yet shed their heritage as performance measurement systems. This is still the prevailing and shared model for planning systems. Relying on the strengths of data computation and presentation, they forego non-quantitative planning activities. While it is important to measure, the measurement activity must however not be the ultimate goal, but a means to better planning and implementation. Yet, the lack of a well-defined and sufficiently detailed strategic planning and implementation methodology has hindered the evolution away from quantitative measurement. Furthermore, there has been relatively limited need for software that supports strategic planning on a frequent basis, as strategic planning has been an infrequent exercise, often supported by outside consultants who would manage the process, capture the findings, and generate reports. The next generation of ESM systems needs to operate differently. It must be based on the principle that measurement systems are significantly more useful if they are connected back to a (non-quantitative) planning and management system and therefore business objectives (Singh et al., 2002), and that managerial planning approaches are significantly more impactful when linked forward to a measurement system that measures the success of a strategy (Fahy, 2002). Furthermore, future strategic planning has to be understood as an on-going activity that enables companies to define and redefine strategies under increasingly competitive conditions. Consequently, such systems will contain both planning and measurement components. The planning component is not a computerized consultant or an expert system for strategy planning, but a support system that provides senior planners with workflow, data structures and planning techniques to ensure the input of sufficient data, structuring of that data, and the development of outputs required for the planning process. Some guidance, checklists, and advice will be possible, but the cognitive effort will largely remain with the planners or consultants. Nevertheless, the structure of the process, the well-defined inputs and outputs, the reusability and maintainability of strategies, and the seamless integration between planning and measuring, promises significant improvements in speed and effectiveness of strategy implementation. The word ‘system’ is inadequate to describe this new type of strategic information system. It is better understood as a new enterprise management practice, at whose core there is support through information technology. While such practices are clearly feasible with today's technologies (and have already been created by a few companies), their impact and benefit remain to be demonstrated. Singh et al.'s (2002) study offers a sobering insight on this issue. Singh et al. found that process support was not a critical factor for the success of an EIS (their terminology), regardless of the process being environmental scanning, strategy formulation, implementation or control (monitoring). Only the link to corporate objectives proved to be a success determinant for such systems. However, since most leading planning systems today do not implement a significant strategy management component, those surveyed by Singh et al., may never have experienced real support for strategy management. Beyond this next generation, we might envision a completely new paradigm for ESM systems, one which seeks to create more holistic planning models and uses rich imagery for their capture. Such systems would rely on new developments in virtual reality and gaming that would allow the rendering of multiple future worlds, and the paths towards them.