Initially, Isuzu Australia Limited (IAL) was manually distributing information to other truck dealerships within the region; however, this method proved to consume a substantial amount of cost and time and was susceptible to errors. The effects associated with the manual technique were a potential threat to IAL’s market position. Therefore, this prompted the company to utilize collaboration techniques, which were achieved through the creation of a new system that permitted employees to publish information individually. In addition, the employees used the system’s instant messaging aspects to collaborate in decision-making (Bidgoli, 2014).
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As a result, this led to the company witnessing significant improvements and overcoming the issues associated with the manual system. The new system saved both time and cost, reduced errors, and improved information issuance.
The IAL selected the IBM WebSphere Portal and Workplace Web Content Management as an online portal and content management system to substitute the previous manual system. This platform was specifically chosen because of its collaboration capabilities, such as wikis and blogs, in which IAL’s initial manual system was ineffective in terms of sharing data. The content management system is IBM Lotus Quickr that offers a team collaboration platform, which will allow IAL’s employees to share information. The Lotus Quickr has several other advantages, which comprise: it is currently the fastest technique of sharing information with teams, it is intuitive and easy to use this required minimal training (Clark & Stewart, 2010).
Moreover, in general, the IBM WebSphere Portal and the Workplace Web Content Management platform ensure that the information inputted is fresh, accurate, complete, and legitimate. The dual content management components allowed for individual employees to create and edit documents and enhanced collective decision-making.
A wiki is defined as a website that is collaboratively designed by multiple users. One major characteristic of collaborative work is that it improves as more people continue to use it. This concept is centered on the notion that within any organization, a substantial amount of information exists among its members. Therefore, through sharing knowledge and information, the organization’s general intelligence level will also increase.
One essential feature of a wiki is that information should be easily accessible (Chen, Jang, & Chen, 2014). For instance, suppose the IAL had rolled out a new system that employees had found to be challenging to use, then the company would not have witnessed any variations in the cost and time spent or the number of errors. The general manner through which IAL utilizes wikis for its internal collaboration is by integrating the instant messaging feature. This feature allows employees to communicate in real-time and quickly find group solutions to a problem.
However, regardless of improving efficiency within IAL, the introduction of technology, such as groupware, may affect the organization’s culture and operations. One of the primary issues is the lack of familiarity (Chen, Jang, & Chen, 2014). IAL’s employees were previously used to the manual method of sharing information; however, after the introduction of the new wiki system, groupware, they may be hesitant to contribute to a wiki.
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They might require a form of incentive until they realize its value. One technique that IAL could use to mitigate this problem is by ensuring that the goal of the groupware is communicated, and this can further be cemented through hiring some IT experts to train the employees on how to navigate and use the groupware (Chen, Jang, & Chen, 2014). Although the company will have to incur an initial cost of training employees, the latter subsequent costs resulted from the efficient utilization of the training techniques will be more.
Bidgoli, H. (2014). Management information systems (9th ed.). Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning.
Clark, T., & Stewart, J. (2010). Using document design to create and maintain wikis. Business Communication Quarterly, 73(4), 453-456. Web.
Chen, Y., Jang, S., & Chen, P. (2014). Using wikis and collaborative learning for science teachers’ professional development. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 31(4), 330-344.