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Information Systems and Subsystems of Riordan Manufacturing

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For a company to be successful in any industry, it must have structure and work well in its separate parts within this structure. This case is known as having an Information System or a Business System. Either system can be defined as "any combination...that supports operations, management and decision making" (Wikipedia, 2008). The operations support can be in the form of an Information Technology Help Desk and the management and decision making can refer to marketing and advertising. Information Systems and Business Systems are exact practices; however this does not mean that they are limited.

The following information describes how Riordan Manufacturing, a company that focuses on customizing plastic moldings, uses these systems and subsystems and how they can improve them or implement more.

Current System Setup

Riordan Manufacturing, Inc. is a company that specializes in plastic injection modeling. Their products range from plastic bottles all the way to plastic medical supplies, like heart valves and stents. They are completely owned by Riordan Industries. They began as an R&D (research and development) company called Riordan Plastics, Inc. in 1991, but developed into a manufacturing company when the founder, Dr. Riordan, purchased a fan manufacturing plant located in Missouri in 1992. The name was then changed to Riordan Manufacturing, Inc. After producing quality fans for a year, he expanded the product lineup to include plastic beverage containers after investing in another plant located in Georgia. In 2000, the company expanded to China, where fans were going to be produced from there on out. The plant in Missouri became the place of custom plastic parts production.

Their mission statement is a combination of their focus, customer relationships, employees, and what they expect to achieve in the future. Well thought out, they are concerned with maintaining good customer relations by providing clients with top quality products and being the solution, not the problem. In order to give their clients the best in customer service, they have to make sure that their employees are well informed and trained to the standards that the company intends to uphold. They also need to guarantee that their information system is updated and is compatible with the rest of the company.

Riordan's financing and accounting department contains many components, including, but not limited to, a general ledger, accounts payable, and accounts receivable. When the company acquired the offices in Michigan and Georgia, compatibility between each branches finance department was not discussed and they currently face the problem of compatibility between them.

The sales and marketing department is a little more put together than the finance and accounting department, but only just so. They have issues pertaining to data entry for other employees to access. There are too many ways that this department is keeping an eye on sales and recording information. They are not centralized around one data entry system.

The human resources department is well organized. The list of workers is alphabetical by last name and all the information pertaining to that worker is listed next to their names. They keep previous communications that they had within the company. All employee files are listed and are on their own tab, not to be confused with any other documents concerning the employees. Even the demographics are included on the human resources page of their intranet. Everyone has access to all necessary human resource information at their fingertips without the wait time that is required when requesting information from that particular department.

All in all, the company is in need of a system information update. This proposal is going to outline the existing information systems and procedures, as well as outline a new system that would create an effective management environment.

Security Protocols

Security refers to technical issues related to the computer system, psychological and behavioral factors in the organization and its employees, and protection against the unpredictable occurrences of the natural world.

Riordan Manufacturing has re-conceptualized its business processes, disconnected from its old, inadequate business software, and implemented, on an accelerated timeline, SYSPRO ERP. Prior to SYSPRO, Riordan Manufacturing had virtually a non-existent security system, especially at the operations website - the heart of the company! Riordan's operation site is responsible for the following: keeping track of production, inventory, supply chain, project process, strategic planning, sustainability study, and communications. If Riordan Manufacturing had a security breach or any other technological malfunction, the overall affect would have been disastrous financially to Riordan's plant operations!

Previously, Riordan had no integration across departments, and no ability to accurately control or report on Riordan's inventory and supply. The company needed to change and to do so quickly.

Riordan Manufacturing has finally recognized that: "Firms need to establish a good set of both general and application controls for their information systems. A risk assessment evaluates information assets, identifies control points and control weaknesses, and determines the most cost-effective set of controls. Firms must also develop a coherent corporate security policy and plans for continuing business operations in the event of disaster or disruption. The security policy includes policies for acceptable use and authorization. Comprehensive and systematic MIS auditing helps organizations determine the effectiveness of security and controls for their information systems." See Improving Strategic and Operational Performance, Eighth Edition. Chapter 8.

Riordan wanted to ensure that the implementation went according to schedule, so it hired an outside ERP consultant. Over the years Riordan has learned the pitfalls, risks, what is critical, and - very importantly - what isn't critical. The Riordan outside ERP consultant understood a business's key needs, assessing uncertainty, and ensuring early visible results and improvements are all important steps for the success of



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