Explain how organisations use information (P1)
Types of information
Qualitative information is non-numeric information based on quality. An example of this would be if you were in a restaurant and the waiter asked you how good was your meal, then you would say that it is good or bad. Since different customers have different opinions then the information collected is not fact based, this is known as qualitative information.
Quantitative information is information that can be directly measured and can be seen as factual information rather than opinionated. An example of this is when in a restaurant and you are collecting data on how many customers turn up throughout the day to find out what times is most popular. The information collected is number based and provides hard facts on the amount of customers and the times they show up. It is harder to argue against quantitative information due to it is factual. Another example of quantitative information is that MegaMedia could ask their customers “How would you rate our services?” and there are 5 options to choose from, 1 being lowest and 5 being highest. Even though it may be opinionated whether a customer likes your service or not, it shows facts about how good your service is.
Primary data is data that you collected internally. Since you know where primary data came from then it can be seen as reliable and accurate if it has been collected together correctly. Obtaining primary data is more expensive as you need to collect, store and analyse the data yourself. MegaMedia can collect their data by visiting the manufacture of the product they are going to sell themselves. If MegaMedia want to sell the new Samsung Galaxy, then they can organise a meeting with Samsung to discuss information about the phone, get a hands-on experience and ultimately decide if they want to sell the product on their website.
Secondary data is data that is collected externally outside of your business. Using secondary data is less reliable than primary data as you are relying on someone else to collect the data and you need to ensure that it is reliable source. A good source of secondary data would be trusted document such as an encyclopaedia. If you are collecting data from Wikipedia, then it may not be 100% accurate and should be cautious of using the data. If MegaMedia is unable to organise a meeting with Samsung to collect primary information about the new phone, then MegaMedia can look at their official website and collect the information they need.
Purposes of Information
Operational support means that businesses use information to monitor and control activity minute by minute or hour by hour decisions on a daily basis. By analysing information and identifying trends, businesses can use the information to figure out what products are selling the most and get them re-stocked to get more sales. This also can mean that the products are not selling too well, an example of this is that MegaMedia is still selling the iPhone 4 and the sales are dropping massively because there are newest releases of the phone and no one wants to get this anymore, which means MegaMedia needs to discontinue the product before they start to lose profit.
Analysis is weekly sales and predicted sales patterns. If something has a higher sale rate at the weekend rather than during weekdays, then they will stock more of the product at the weekend for increased sales. This means they have enough time to restock other products if they sell better on the weekdays. If a product is not selling well on their website, then MegaMedia would decide to either put it on sale or remove it. If there are a lot of sales on a product, then MegaMedia would be wise to order more of that stock. If a product sells well on weekends and not weekdays then MegaMedia would need to order stock ready for the weekend.
Decision making are ad hoc decisions based on problems. When a problem occurs, it needs to be solved quickly. This might be that a staff member is not doing their job properly and having a bad reputation on the business. This needs to be addressed with the managers and they need to make a decision to fire that particular staff member and hire more staff on their team. If an staff member from MegaMedia is given a task to make a new product page on their website and has not done it by the deadline the MegaMedia would have to make a decision to fire him and hire anew employee which will follow deadlines.
Gaining Commercial Advantage
Gaining advantage is looking for opportunities to enhance sales. An example of this would be that Apple releases the new iPhone 6 and lots of people want it. MegaMedia could take this opportunity to get the iPhone 6 in stock and start selling it to make a huge profit. This is an opportunity because a new phone of the same brand usually releases once a year so they need to take advantage before the opportunity goes.