DIAL 2020

IT Strategy development: DIAL 2020


To deliver: a short term plan that will equip DIAL House Chester with an IT strategy suitable for DIAL 2020.



Andrew Jones

University of Chester




IT Strategy development: DIAL 2020

DIAL House Chester: Improving the lives of disabled people.


Hamilton Place, Chester, CH1 2BH
Tel: 01244 345655

Enterprise Mission:

Figure 1 DIAL House Chester Mission Statement Aims and Objectives

Change is coming, that is inevitable. When this change will happen is a little unclear as is the strength of that change. DHC need to be agilely placed with flexible, or change malleable, structures. In the analysis, the short-term wins.


To deliver: a short term plan that will equip DIAL House Chester with an IT strategy suitable for DIAL 2020.


Table of Contents

Mission. 1

Table of Figures. 5

Table of Tables. 5

Aims Year 2012. 6

On-going new IS Projects are: 6

Keeping IT and IS as separate Strategies. 8

Decision Support Systems, Executive Information Systems and Management Information Systems Development 8

Operational Systems Development 9

Hardware Implementation. 9

Aims Year 2013. 11

Aims Year 2014. 11

Aims Year 2015. 11

Aims Years 2016-2020. 11

Objectives. 12

Audit 12

Map future trends. 14

Align IT with IS service delivery. 16

Budgets. 17

Goals. 18

Cost Reduction. 19

Operational flexibility. 19

IS foundation stones. 19

Key Result Areas. 19

·      Service Provision. 19

·      Service Delivery. 19

·      Product Development 19

Energy Consumption. 19

Paper and Printing. 19

Infrastructure Purchasing Strategy. 19

Platform Purchasing Strategy. 20

Software Purchasing Strategy. 20

Hardware Inventory. 20

Proposed Hardware Inventory. 20

A 5 unit team! 20

Enterprise Functions. 22

Information Technology. 22

Information Systems. 22

Executive Decision Support Systems. 22

Finance. 23

HRM... 23

Marketing. 23

Promotional Activity. 23

Service Wheel 24

STEP. 24

SWOT. 24

TOWS. 25

The cloud: Weather Forecasting. 25

Service Delivery. 26

Product Delivery. 26

Development Areas. 27

Reflection. 27

Funding. 28

Service delivery change. 28

Location. 28

Initiatives. 28

Strategy Planning. 28

Think about an information system that is well known to you, ideally one which has been in place for two or three years. 28

The DHC Server Implementation 2008: 28

Appendix 1. 32

Symbols and terminology. 32

Appendix 2. 33

Appendix 3. 34

Strategic Information Systems Theory. 34

Michael Porter's Competitive Advantage and the Value Chain. 34

Charles Wiseman’s Strategic Perspective View and the Strategic Planning Process. 36

Strategic Thrusts. 37

Linking strategy and IT Strategic Thrusts. 37

Other Models. 38

Some thrust statements: 42

SIS general enterprise application suit product features: 43

Data and the enterprise. 43

Change Management Theory. 45

Kotter. 45

A Knowledge Culture. 47

Appendix 4. 48

Projects. 49

Appendix 5. 51

Questionnaire Development 51

Thinking about DHC and the computers and the software that they run: 51

Thinking of the information systems you use. 51

Thinking about the computer hardware you use. 51

Thinking about the future and the technology that is available, what do you think of the following?  52

Bibliography. 53



Table of Figures

Figure 1 DIAL House Chester Mission Statement Aims and Objectives. 1

Figure 2 the IS structure for DHC.. 6

Figure 3 Strategic Pyramid. 8

Figure 4 the IT Audit Process. 13

This then distils into the seven categories show in Figure 5. 15

Figure 6 the seven types of internet user Source: UK Online Centres. 15

Figure 7 derived from (Pew Internet Project surveys, 2004) 15

Figure 8 Strategy Budget. 19

Figure 9 derived from DIAL House Chester logical IT Infrastructure. 20

Figure 10 model of the Dimensions of Strategic Impact 22

Figure 11 DIAL House Services Wheel 24

Figure 12 DIAL House Chester and a Weather Forecast 26

Figure 13 Three Stage Development Process. 27

Figure 14 Simple System.. 27

Table of Tables

Table 1 POBIS analysis. 9

Table 2 Table of Objectives by Year. 12

Table 3 Environmental forecast for DHC.. 12

Table 4 Five methods of analysing the IT spectrum.. 14

Table 5 Goals Matrix. 18

Table 6 Cost Reduction Analysis. 19

Table 7 Cloud Theatres. 25

Table 8 Wiseman, Rackoff and Ulrich matrix. 38

Table 9 adapted from Strategic TDC matrix (Value Based Management.net, 2012) 38



Aims Year 2012

To start in the right place, with an outline IS review. DIAL House Chester (DHC) has a number of information systems that support the business. Some of these are robust paper systems; others are patchy computerised systems and the balance of technologically mixed systems perform well enough for DHC to maintain its’ at capacity service delivery for “Welfare Rights”. So what composes DHC current information system?

Let’s start with clarifying what an information system is and what it comprises of: “An information system (IS) can be any combination of information technology and people's activities to support the operations, management and decision making in an enterprise”.

So in no particular order, we have:

Figure 2 the IS structure for DHC

·         AIMS, SQL

·         Word Processing, Office 2007

·         Spread sheets for stock control and Purchase Ordering, Excel 2007

·         Internet Enquiries, Web site and Outlook 2007

·         Reception Database, Access 2007

·         Personnel Database, Access 2007

·         QBC, likely to be phased out with the introduction of unified benefit

·         SAGE Payroll

·         Quicken

·         Help Desk

·         Office 2007

·         Windows XP

·         Server 2008

·         Exchange 2008

·         MS SQL 2008

On-going new IS Projects are:

·         An Exchange based Group Diary; this system is embryonic at this stage and very early in the cycle. The problem is being refined by a request for comment form the Head of IS.

·         A personnel appraisal system for Shopmobility.

·         A SharePoint portal implementation project for a unified desktop interface for DHC products, services, news and what’s going on. Versioning might be quite important at this early stage, although it should just be a case of picking the latest development tools and starting. To this end the recommendation is: SharePoint Designer 2010 and SharePoint Server 2010.

·         Web Site Development, Virtual LINUX

One of the concerns from the Head of IS and echoed by the Head of IT was a schoolboy error in security terms, as the organisations full back-up tapes where never making it off sight! They were being put back in the box on top of the server for the next rotation in use.


Prepare DIAL House Chester for the next 18 month period with a solid practical IT platform from which to deliver and develop services and products.

Figure 3 Strategic Pyramid

Keeping IT and IS as separate Strategies

It is important to differentiate the two: sIS and IT! One is the car, the other the route map for the journey. It is not the technology itself that drives IT but the way in which we use it that drives the development. Today’s it will never catch on toy becomes tomorrow’s ubiquitous device. In our travels through this life, the early 21st century, information and ready access to it drives our use and application of IT.

Decision Support Systems, Executive Information Systems and Management Information Systems Development

We need to start with the identification of systems contributing to MIS and DDS and align them where possible.





Intel CISC Server

Intel/AMD CISC workstations

Intel CISC Server

Intel/AMD CISC workstations

Operating System

Windows Server 2008

Windows XP

Windows 7

Windows 8

Windows Server 2012

Windows 8

Business Tools

Windows SQL 2008

Microsoft Office 2007

Windows Exchange 2007

Windows SharePoint 2007

Windows SQL 2012

Microsoft Office 365

Windows Exchange 2013

Windows SharePoint 2010

Information System




Word Processing

Office 2007

Office 365

Spread sheets for stock control and Purchase Ordering

Excel 2007


Internet Enquiries



Web site and Contact Management

Virtual Linux

Multiple Virtual Servers

Email, calendar and diary

Outlook 2007


Reception Database

Access 2007


Personnel Database

Access 2007



likely to be phased out with the introduction of unified benefit


SAGE Payroll


SAGE Line50




Help Desk

Excel 2007










Table 1 POBIS analysis.

Operational Systems Development

We need to conduct an audit of operational systems. See current projects

Hardware Implementation

Why change? The workstations are crumbling are them! The network and servers are humming along. In recent testing greater than 90% of processor time was allocated to maintaining the network; a more reasonable figure15% was recorded on the highest specified unit.

Funds are currently being raised for 25 workstation PC’s at a budget value of £12,500, this figure is half what one would expect to spend on a reasonable quality/performance platform, as with all things, there is a bang for your buck! So DHC has to choose, and this choice of 25 units of Intel/AMD powered units with acres of hard drive space is a safe cautious sensible solid approach, although the hardware spend will be depreciated quickly.

The planned implementation may work well for a lengthy period of time. But looking seriously what do you get for your money? Well at today’s current market values you get an Intel I3 processor, 4Gb RAM 1GB Graphics 1TB HDD and Windows 7 verses double the performance for double the money. DHC are fully aware of the present operating requirement from this currently stable IS environment, but change is on the way and DHC need to be prepared for this coming change with more flexibility needed in the core infrastructure to cater to the increasingly diverse range of devices that require connecting to the network for the delivery of service.

DHC desktop upgrade cycle is currently running at 10 years. This is a huge strategic step to take, fixing your platform requirement for such an extended period. In the bangs per buck debate, the industry will have price performance cycled nearly 7 times, that means that the money invested per unit will have doubled in performance for the same money! A performance increase of: 2 x 10256 for the same unit cost.

DHC has some choices to make when considering this current round of spending. Sticking with the Intel x86 architecture: there could be a blended implementation for the development team. Five units would be specified to run Windows 8 comfortably and they would be supported by a Virtual Server 2012 implementation.


Aims Year 2013

·         to fully understand the changes in welfare reform

·         to have implemented the current IT hardware project

·         to have implemented touch screen technologies

Aims Year 2014

·         To have SharePoint implemented

·         To migrate databases and develop applications

·         To implement content management systems for website development

Aims Year 2015

·         to be well on the way to innovating service delivery

·         to have highly integrated decision support systems service users requirements

·         to significantly improve on the number of service users successfully dealt with

Aims Years 2016-2020

·         to focus DHC’s capacity to successfully managing an uncertain time for service users

·         to structure DHC’s staff and volunteers activities to best meet service users uncertain and changing requirements














































·         Risk Identification






·         Risk Analysis






·         Risk Mitigation






·         Contingency Planning






Table 2 Table of Objectives by Year


If possible this should be a complete IT audit of current and projected hardware and software needs and wants. An Information Technology audit, as distinct from an information systems audit, is an examination of the management controls within an Information technology (IT) infrastructure. The evaluation of obtained evidence determines if the information systems are safeguarding assets, maintaining data integrity, and operating effectively to achieve the organization's goals or objectives.

Table 3 Environmental forecast for DHC

The existing environment


This is changing in the immediate future for DHC from a Windows XP to Windows 7 environment.


The short-term projected environment


There will be an introduction of Windows 8 and a mixed mobile O/S to create a far more flexible, blended environment.


The mid-term projected environment


We will create a more homogenous network infrastructure, facilitating a more seamless mixed communications environment.



IT Audit process

Figure 4 the IT Audit Process

Goodman & Lawless systemic approaches to IT audit

§  Technological innovation process audit.


This audit constructs a risk profile for existing and new projects. The audit will assess the length and depth of the company's experience in its chosen technologies, as well as its presence in relevant markets, the organization of each project, and the structure of the portion of the industry that deals with this project or product, organization and industry structure.


§  Innovative comparison audit.


This audit is an analysis of the innovative abilities of the company being audited, in comparison to its competitors. This requires examination of company's research and development facilities, as well as its track record in actually producing new products.


§  Technological position audit:


This audit reviews the technologies that the business currently has and that it needs to add. Technologies are characterized as being either "base", "key", "pacing" or "emerging".


The spectrum analysed with five categories

Systems and Applications

1.      An audit to verify that systems and applications are appropriate, are efficient, and are adequately controlled to ensure valid, reliable, timely, and secure input, processing, and output at all levels of a system's activity.

Information Processing Facilities

2.      An audit to verify that the processing facility is controlled to ensure timely, accurate, and efficient processing of applications under normal and potentially disruptive conditions.

Systems Development

3.      An audit to verify that the systems under development meet the objectives of the organization and to ensure that the systems are developed in accordance with generally accepted standards for systems development.

Management of IT and Enterprise Architecture

4.      An audit to verify that IT management has developed an organizational structure and procedures to ensure a controlled and efficient environment for information processing.

Client/Server, Telecommunications, Intranets, and Extranets

5.      An audit to verify that telecommunications controls are in place on the client (computer receiving services), server, and on the network connecting the clients and servers.

Table 4 Five methods of analysing the IT spectrum

Map future trends

The future is mobile and portable with cloud provision! It is the internet again! Interfaces will become more touch, gesture and speech driven, not keyboard and mouse centric.

How and where we are using the internet is changing. We have the introduction of 4G as a mobile high-speed connection to the internet, enabling far more devices to get access to this versatile medium.

Jeremy Hunt, then Secretary of State for Health, is quoted as saying, in May 2011 “That he wants 90% of ‘people in each local authority area’ to have access to a superfast (25Mbps+) broadband ISP service by 2015; in addition: to ensure that everybody in the country also had access to a minimum internet download speed of at least 2Mbps by the same year.” (J, 2011)

So what is broadband all about?

·         Broadband Internet access, often shortened to just broadband, is a high data rate Internet access—typically contrasted with dial-up access using a 56k modem.

·         A communications network in which the bandwidth can be divided and shared by multiple simultaneous signals (as for voice or data or video).

·         An internet access service that responds to or operates at a wide band of frequencies.

·         Any internet connection offering download speeds of 2Megabits per second (Mbps) or more.

·         A network with high bandwidth (greater than 256 bps).

·         A service or connection allowing large amounts of data to be carried very quickly, and which can split the available bandwidth into multiple channels.

·         Broadband is a generic term for fast Internet access

So what for DHC? They are ideally placed with broadband, and would only benefit from a fibre implementation at 40Mb. Web publishing on the other hand, has to change. DHC needs a more versatile publishing environment if it wants to meet the information demands of customers.

So what are these customers doing on the internet? It turns out we typically do 10 things, shown in no particular order these are:

·         information

·         social networking

·         communication

·         transfer of files

·         current buzz

·         entertainment

·         internet transactions

·         making money

·         marketing

·         online education

This then distils into the seven categories show in Figure 5.

Figure 6 the seven types of internet user Source: UK Online Centres

Figure 7 derived from (Pew Internet Project surveys, 2004)

This should include research into the technologies involved in the delivery and development of products and services offered by DIAL House Chester both now and into the future to its customers. So our audit process is going to be one of a Technological Position Audit across the five spectrums.

Align IT with IS service delivery

Plan the integration of services through the application of the Information Strategy Systems Audit process.











Time Budget




hours per


hours per


hours per

2 x 12

1 x 5

1 x 4





2 x 5

2 x 12

1 x 10

1 x 6





3 x 5

2 x 12

1 x 10

1 x 8





4 x 5

2 x 12

1 x 15

1 x 10





= 96 + 20 + 4

= 120 hours per month

= 40 + 96 + 40 + 6

= 182 hours per month

= 60 + 96 +40 + 8

= 204 hours per month

80 + 96 + 60 + 10

= 246 hours per month


Capital Budget





Operations Budget













Risk Assessment

Cost Reduction



This document


To save paper and printing costs

At home


Agility development


Completing the Matrix analysis tools documents

Matrix analysis documents

Mid November 2012

To facilitate IT Strategy Planning



IT Audit



TPA x5 report

November 2012

IT strategy development

At home


Projects Development


Foster a development culture

Generate new project ideas for comment and trial

Nurture and manage the embryonic project of today, for they become the dinosaurs for years to come.


Core Mission



Hardware Implementation

NB, JW, DHC staff

Implement workstation PCs

The introduction of 25 units


Because they have to.



Table 5 Goals Matrix

Cost Reduction


Current Spend

Projected Saving

Forecast Efficiency

Return on Investment







60 hours

6 hours

12 hours




Hours per user

































Wider organisational costs





Table 6 Cost Reduction Analysis


Figure 8 Strategy Budget.

Operational flexibility

IS foundation stones

Core Systems Identification

System Capability Plan

PaaS and SaaS

Key Result Areas

·         Service Provision

·         Service Delivery

·         Product Development

Energy Consumption

Paper and Printing

Infrastructure Purchasing Strategy

·         New hardware infrastructure of a higher quality could be purchased. The opportunities presented by port management strategies would take a change in attitude at DHC.

·         Upgrading on the longest cycle possible! Although is current at Gbit speeds. Internet speeds and access should consider the implementation of fibre optic broadband.

Platform Purchasing Strategy

·         A new hardware platform could be sourced to capitalise on current technologies, as well as stimulating the opportunity for future capacity upgrades.

·         Upgrading should take place on the longest cycle possible to facilitate effective financial planning together with the opportunity for technological advancement.

·         Although the current server setup is moderately current at just four years old, they were well specified and will allow DHC to run both virtual development environments and production environments simultaneously without undue burden to the system.

Software Purchasing Strategy

·         DHC are afforded a one off annual purchase of strategic software which enables them to exploit their charity discount status.

·         There may be a periodic purchasing of tactical software on a one off basis as needed. DHC’s charity status should be used to its maximum advantage.

·         Upgrading, more a refresh. There are only minor tweaks necessary to bring this into alignment.

Hardware Inventory

Figure 9 derived from DIAL House Chester logical IT Infrastructure

Proposed Hardware Inventory


A 5 unit team!

This team will consist of three touchscreen units and two Tablet PCs. These units will be configured using Windows 8 and Microsoft office 365, there will be supported by a virtual server environment consisting of Microsoft Windows server 2012, Microsoft SQL Server, SharePoint 2010 and Exchange 2013. Development tools will include visual studio 2012, Visio 2010 and SharePoint developer 2010.

The final placement of these devices with human resources is still to be finalised but the suggestion is that: the CEO, the Volunteering and Learning Manager, the reception, an adviser and finance received one of these units. In a proposed budget split of 25% for new initiatives: specifically: flexibility and change planning, it leaves the original plan with about £500 per unit to deliver 20 units. There objectives in this round of purchasing should be Intel i5 processors, with 16Gb RAM, 500Gb HDD, 1Gbit networking and 2Gb graphics card supporting a touchscreen with keyboard and mouse.


Enterprise Functions

Information Technology

The hardware we run provides us the flexibility in navigation we gain through the use and application of processing and network power. It is just a simple matter of raw horse power and bang for buck.

DHC should aim for flexibility at this time of uncertain change. Fixing the basic platform in preparation for change management is a sensible decision. The duration of this fix is questionable at once change happens is likely to happen again as our attitude towards it softens. Change is often an upheaval, are aim is to make this potentially turbulent time one smooth transition between DHCs current operating environment and the changes in welfare reform.

Figure 10 model of the Dimensions of Strategic Impact

Information Systems

The information we gather from data and the understanding we wish to impart in the creation of knowledge.

Executive Decision Support Systems

What we need to know?

In the immediate and short-term we need to know and understand the likely changes that will impact DHCs service delivery. The upcoming changes in welfare reform mean that, there will be a shift to online processing and a move away from paper for support. DHC needs to position itself so that it can successfully deliver these changes. This will mean a shift in approach to the allocation of existing and new resources; with advisers known longer exclusively being able to complete forms for customers. There will now be a mix or blend of form completion, with some being done by the client and the remainder by DHC advisers. How this works in practice remains to be seen as information and knowledge about the Personal Independence Payment (PiP) and Universal Credit (UC) becomes available.

Is our funding secure?

In short yes, for the foreseeable future.

Are our strategic goals still current?

Again in short yes!

Strategic Planning
Reporting matrix


The sophistication of DHC’s financial management remains undiscovered. I know that my cash purchase of a can of coke from the café at DHC is audit free. Yet, they raise and secure a significant amount of money and have helped 3,700 individuals claim over £1.7 million of entitled benefit. Affecting the lives of over one hundred people who work and support the organisation


·         Effective despite seeming to be chaotic

·         Need for better communication between volunteers - opportunities not being capitalized upon - could be highlighting valuable information in forums and discussion groups

·         Introduce regular brainstorming sessions to generate and discuss new ideas from outside the IT/IS team

·         Busy, peripatetic – no fixed bases and spaces, resource challenged (won’t have the opportunity to communicate via most up to date methods)


Promotional Activity

Asset assistance letter, see Appendix 2

Service Wheel

Figure 11 DIAL House Services Wheel




The cloud: Weather Forecasting.

Information as a Service


Platform as a Service


Software as a Service






CISC x86 Windows 2012

SQL, Exchange


CISC x86 Windows 8

Office 2010


CISC x86 Windows 8

Office 2010


CISC x86 Windows 8

Office 2010

Smart Phones

CISC x86 Windows 8

Office 2010

Smart Surfaces

CISC x86 Windows 8

Office 2010

Table 7 Cloud Theatres

These three classifications of weather theatres each have their own weather phenomenon and vocabulary to describe the varying atmospheric conditions that exist within each theatre.

Elevations in the Theatres Atmospheres influences the distance in time to the change effects or impact of the prevailing weather: the cloud phenomenon.

Figure 12 DIAL House Chester and a Weather Forecast

Fronts already exist in the form of market and cloud structure segmentations. Most notably between: the Internet and the cloud.

How this applies to DIAL House Chester this autumn: wrap up warm, winter is coming. Technologically we can expect a fairly typical autumn, with extended periods bright and clear skies. There is also the probability of showers, some of which may extend in periods of rain. There is also a good chance of an Indian summer period later in the year, as various initiatives come to fruition.

Service Delivery

There is large scale change on the way with the implementation of welfare reform and the introduction of the unified benefits payment. This is going to be an online only applications process and DHC see a dramatic increase in the number of people wanting access to its advice service. Advice operations are already running at capacity.

Product Delivery

DIAL as a brand.

Development Areas


Information Systems being “people-focussed”, not technical or technological focused. People should be involved throughout the concept/design/implement cycle.

People! How can they cope with change when the pace is so fast in one direction and so slow in another? We live in interesting times; the launch of a new OS is big in today’s news together with the BBC reporting a culture of “absolute fear” in Welfare Reforms; a super storm Sandy hits the USAs’ Eastern Seaboard. A popular Somali poet gunned down, Songwriters jailed in Vietnam. Greece reaches austerity accord; Bolivian radio presenter set on fire, Calls for release of Qatari poet! (BBC, 2012)

Figure 13 Three Stage Development Process

When DIAL House Chester implements new (or modified) information system does it (in your view):

Involve you (or your colleagues / representatives) in the design?


Involve you (or your colleagues / representatives) in the planning for implementation?


Do staffs receive full training?


Is good user documentation available for a trained user for reference?


Is there training documentation available for a new user in the future?


In terms of workplace design does your company concern itself with providing you with a workstation to your needs? Are you trained in how to use it? Is it maintained for you? Would you be listened to if you asked for a change?



What could your company do better, and how?

Figure 14 Simple System

Tactically, DIAL House could quickly invest resources in hardware technology, this will allow them to gain advantages over there current position. Plans are already in place to spend upwards of £12,500 on new hardware, with additional investment very probable, budget estimates would be in the region of £15k for the next 6 month period.

The immediate and short term future for DIAL House Chester appears good, even in this time of un-certainty. The Chief Operating Officer feels very strongly that DIAL House Chester will continue to deliver and develop its’ service delivery well into 2015 and beyond.


DIAL House Chester is a £350k per annum business. Primary funding is provided by Chester West & Chester Council. Additional resources are secured through the various donations schemes. A key tactical aim is to clearly identify a headline number for the capital investments in the DIAL House Chester Information Technology Strategy budget.

Service delivery change

Welfare Rights reform

The introduction of significant change to the way in which benefits are applied for and secured is coming, with all applications being made through an online process.


The increasing pressure to provide: mobile elements of service delivery.


Relocation, in the mid-term period. Project plans have re-surfaced for the redevelopment of the City centre, original proposals for this work stem back fifteen years, so there may be a while yet before the move is timetabled.


Hardware funding project

Strategy Planning

See Appendix 4.

Think about an information system that is well known to you, ideally one which has been in place for two or three years.

The DHC Server Implementation 2008:

Cost breakdown                                            MWL                     MWL            MWL+CTS

                                                                   Original                      Now                      Now

Server hardware                                             3540                      4940                      4940

Router hardware                                                   -                        240                        240

Microsoft SBS 2008 (was 2003)                        769                      1160                      185E

Microsoft Windows Server 2003                      125                        NA                        NA

Exclaimer Disclaimer Licence                               -                        299                        299

Citrix Remote Access                                        700                        NA                        NA

MWL Installation & Configuration               3250                      3250                      3250

Veritas Backup                                                  295                        295                        295

Symantec Enterprise                                         750                        NA                        NA

Training                                                             500                        500                        500

                                                      Sub Total   9929                    10684                      9709


Office Professional licence x21 (was 7)            623                      1440                      289E

                                                            Total   10552                    12124                      9998


·         Attempt to estimate the benefits associated with the IS (both quantitative and qualitative)






n  Hardware

·         Cost

·         Time

·         Training

·         Reliability

·         Availability

·         Efficiency

·         Productivity

·         Use

·         Control

·         Integration

·         Expansibility

n  People

·         Cost

·         Time

·         Training

·         Availability

·         Efficiency

·         Productivity

·         Happiness

·         Management

·         Expansibility

n  Software

·         Cost

·         Time

·         Training

·         Distribution

·         Availability

·         Availability

·         Use

·         Management

·         Control

·         Integration

·         Expansibility

n  Data

·         Cost

·         Time

·         Distribution

·         Data Security

·         Availability

·         Use

·         Transformation

·         Accuracy

·         Confidentiality

·         Privacy

n  Procedures

·         Cost

·         Time

·         Distribution

·         Adherence

·         Applicability

·         Delivery

·         Confidentiality

·         Privacy





·         The costs associated with its development if you can.



Hardware and Software for the 2008 project


Hardware and Software




Paper and Printing




·         Are the benefits associated with different stakeholders?

Stakeholders are many and vary in their expectations of DIAL House Chester IT strategy. These interests include:

o   cost

o   capability

o   range

o   scope

o   application

·         What has been the ‘impact’ of introducing this system?

Performance improvement in networked services, a reliance on the network, highlights the different between server and desktop which is lagging behind.

o   Has the introduction had any unintended effects?

DIAL House Chester is recognised as a technological innovator in the provision of Disability Services. Its excellence and expertise has been call on for a number of other “3rd Economy” organisations.

o   Are these positive or negative for the individuals or groups within the company or for stakeholders outside?

Typically they are positive

·         If you were asked to undertake a detailed quantitative and qualitative management evaluation of the benefits and impacts of this system what approach would you use and why?

A technological Audit across five spectrums!

o   What difficulties would you encounter in doing so?

Staff and people resistance!

·         How does your company treat evaluation of IS? Formally? Informally? Not at all?

It’s a case of when stuff needs to be formalised and written down the resulting documents that formulate strategy are of a very high calibre and have enabled DHC to extend its service provision and continue to successfully gain funding. The current process is informal, although it is recognised and desired that formal planning takes place.


Appendix 1

Symbols and terminology

 Clear Night Sky


 Partly Cloudy

 Heavy Rain

 Sleet Shower (Night)

 Sleet Shower

 Sunny Intervals




 Hail Shower (Night)

 Hail Shower


 Medium-Level Cloud

 Low Level Cloud


 Light Snow Shower (Night)

 Light Snow Shower

 Light Rain Shower (Night)

 Light Rain Shower


 Light Snow

 Heavy Snow Shower (Night)

 Heavy Snow Shower

 Light Rain

 Heavy Rain Shower (Night)

 Heavy Rain Shower

 Heavy Snow

 Thundery Showers (Night)

 Thundery Shower

 Thunder Storm

 Tropical Storm





Appendix 2

Letter ideas to generate: sponsorship and donations: of hardware and expertise.

DIAL House Chester like all enterprises faces challenges in delivering its’ disability focused services to the customer. As part of a strategic review of its Information System we are implementing a new IT strategy, and this where you will be able can help.

Put simply we need hardware! Again simply: the demands of modern operating systems and business applications software is over whelming DIAL House Chester’s Aging and obscure IT technology.

So how can I help you may be wondering? Well we would like to have some of your old hardware. The kit that’s being replaced or has become redundant to your organisation; as you see, what’s old and redundant too you, is new to us and will enable us to upgrade our core network and service delivery networks.

What we need and are looking for:

·         Two Network Servers

·         Two Network switches

·         Two Wireless Access Points

·         Two Print Servers

·         Four Workgroup Printers

·         Ten Personal Printers

·         One Fax Server

·         Twenty five Desktop or Workstation Personal Computers

·         Twenty five Desktop Display units

·         Five Laptops or Tablets

Your donation of hardware resources can be accompanied by effective PR representation, as a registered charity DIAL House Chester has excellent media links that will ensure maximum publicity for your donation. Alternatively you are able to donate anonymously, either way we appreciate greatly the help and support you have so generously offered.

Your help and support through this hardware donation will enable DIAL House Chester to continue to develop and improve its’ service delivery for the disabled people of Chester.

We thank you for the time taken to read this letter and look forwards to hearing from you soon.

You can also donate expertise! We are seeking help, support and insight into the development of our IS strategy. If this is an area you are able to contribute expertise and or resources we would really enjoy discussing and developing any ideas you may have further.


Appendix 3

Strategic Information Systems Theory

The concept of Strategic Information Systems or "SIS" was first introduced into the field of information systems in 1982-83 by Dr Charles Wiseman. They are intended to give competitive advantage to the organization. They may deliver a product or service that is at a lower cost, that is differentiated, that focuses on a particular market segment, or is innovative. They are seen as enabling.

So like most stuff in computing it is old theory! But as a concept it has barley been in existence for 50 years! The problems faced by DHC in meeting its’ core mission: to successfully communicate with its’ customers. This is a fundamental objective for an enterprise; communications, next to cash is king!

Michael Porter's Competitive Advantage and the Value Chain

·         How structurally attractive is the industry?

DHC operate in a number of markets sector analysis would be needed into: welfare provision, information services, advice, catering

·         What is the firm’s relative position in the industry?

Again there will be sector by sector variation, but overall enterprise positioning is good.

1.      the threat of new entrants

2.      the threat of substitute products or services

3.      the bargaining power of suppliers

4.      the bargaining power of buyers and

5.      the intensity of the rivalry among existing competitors

§  Inbound logistics, which includes the receipt and storage of material, and the general management of supplies.

§  Operations, which are the manufacturing steps or the service steps.

§  Outbound logistics, which are associated with collecting, storing, and physically distributing the product to buyers. In some companies this is a significant cost, and buyers value speed and consistency.

§  Marketing and sales includes customer relations, order entry, and price management.

§  After-sales services covers the support of the product in the field, installation, customer training, and so on.

§  Procurement, which includes the contracting for and purchase of raw materials, or any items used by the enterprise. Part of procurement is in the purchasing department, but it is also spread throughout the organization.

§  Technology development may simply cover operational procedures, or many be involved with the use of complex technology. Today, sophisticated technology is pervasive, and cuts across all activities; it is not just an R&D function.

§  Human resource management is the recruiting, training, and development of people. Obviously, the cuts across every other activity.

§  Firm infrastructure is a considerable part of the firm, including the accounting department, the legal department, the planning department, government relations, and so on.

Some of the cost drivers which must be analysed, understood, and controlled are:

§  Scale. The appropriate type of scale must be found. Policies must be set to reinforce economies of scale in scale-sensitive activities.

§  Learning. The learning curve must be understood and managed. As the organization tries to learn from competitors, it must strive to keep its own learning proprietary.

§  Capacity Utilization. Cost can be controlled by the levelling of throughput.

§  Linkages. Linkages should be exploited within the value chain. Work with suppliers and channels can reduce costs.

§  Interrelationships. Shared activities can reduce costs.

§  Integration. The possibilities for integration or de-integration should be examined systematically.

§  Timing. If the advantages of being the firs mover or a late mover are understood, they can be exploited.

§  Policies. Policies that enhance the low-cost position or differentiation should be emphasized.

§  Location. When viewed as a whole, the location of individual activities can be optimized.

§  Institutional Factors. Institutional factors should be examined to see whether their change may be helpful.

§  Identify the appropriate value chain and assign costs and assets to it.

§  Identify the cost drivers of each value activity and see how they interact.

§  Determine the relative costs of competitors and the sources of cost differences.

§  Develop a strategy to lower relative cost position through controlling cost drivers or reconfiguring the value chain.

§  Estimate the cost reduction strategy for sustainability.

A few typical factors which may lower the buyer’s costs are:

·         Less idle time

·         Lower risk of failure

·         Lower installation costs

·         Faster processing time

·         Lower labour costs

·         Longer useful life and so on.

Porter lists seven steps to achieving differentiation:

1.      Determine the identity of the real buyer.

2.      Understand the buyer’s value chain, and the impact of the seller’s product on it.

3.      Determine the purchasing criteria of the buyer.

4.      Assess possible sources of uniqueness in the firm’s value chain.

5.      Identify the cost of these sources of uniqueness.

6.      Choose the value activities that create the most valuable differentiation for the buyer relative to the costs incurred.

7.      Test the chosen differentiation strategy for sustainability.

Stolen from wiki

Charles Wiseman’s Strategic Perspective View and the Strategic Planning Process

The Strategic Planning Process: Wiseman advocates brainstorming and the systematic search for SIS opportunities. He has had considerable success with a formalized framework for surfacing ideas. He describes his SIS Planning Process in five phases:

·         Phase A: Introduce the Information Services management to SIS concepts. Give an overview of the process describe cases. Gain approval to proceed with an idea-generation meeting in Information Service.

·         Phase B: Conduct an SIS idea-generation meeting with Information Services middle management. Test the SIS idea-generation methodology. Identify significant SIS areas for executive consideration.

·         Phase C: Conduct an SIS idea-generation meeting with senior Information Services management. Identify SIS ideas, and evaluate them together with the ideas from the previous meeting

·         Phase D: Introduce the top business executives to the SIS concept. Discuss some of the SIS ideas that were considered for the business. Gain approval to proceed with the SIS idea-generation meetings with business planners.

·         Phase E: Conduct an SIS idea-generation meeting with the corporate planners. Identify some SIS ideas and evaluate them together with the ideas that have emerged from the previous meeting.

In the idea-generation meetings of Phases B, C, and E of the process, there are always seven explicit steps:

  1. Give a Tutorial on Competitive Strategy. Introduce the concepts of strategic thrusts, strategic targets, and competitive strategy.
  2. Apply SIS Concepts to Actual Cases. Develop an understanding of SIS possibilities and their strategic thrusts and targets.
  3. Review the Company’s Competitive Position. Try to understand its presents business position and its strategies.
  4. Brainstorm for SIS Opportunities. Generate SIS ideas in small groups.
  5. Discuss the SIS Opportunities. Use the experience of the group to correlate and condense the SIS ideas.
  6. Evaluate the SIS Opportunities. Consider the competitive significance of the SIS ideas.
  7. Detail the SIS Blockbusters. Select the best SIS ideas, and detail their competitive advantages and key implementation issues.

Stolen from wiki

Strategic Thrusts

“A strategic thrust is a broad statement of intended strategic actions. The statement should provide a "compelling theme that knits together otherwise independent activities and focuses the energies of functional groups on things that matter in the market." A strategic thrust is intended to create a broad, shared understanding of what strategic actions are intended during a 3 to 5 years planning horizon.” (Power, 2012)

Linking strategy and IT Strategic Thrusts

An approach pioneered by Wiseman, Rackoff and Ulrich in 1985. Conceptually holds that SIS should be used for tactical competitive advantage. They created a six phase planning process to evaluate SIS with the objective of winning top management support. (Value Based Management.net, 2012)

Their conceptual framework views the enterprise in relation to in its environment and:

1.      Cost

2.      Differentiation

3.      Innovation

4.      Growth

5.      Alliance

Strategic Thrusts are major competitive moves, either defensive or offensive, directed at one or more strategic targets.

They recommend a six step strategic IT planning process:

1.      Present Tutorial on Competitive Strategy and SIS

2.      Apply SIS concept to actual cases

3.      Review enterprise competitive position

4.      Brainstorm for SIS opportunities

5.      Discuss and clarify SIS opportunities

6.      Rate and rank SIS opportunity proposals

Wiseman, Rackoff and Ulrich matrix


Table 8 Wiseman, Rackoff and Ulrich matrix

























Other Models

TDC Matrix

Time Distance Complexity matrix. Created by Ben Tiggelaar, to assess the value of IT in general and in relation to the Internet specifically.

1.      What is the influence or value of controlling time distance and complexity of knowledge, creativity and relations

2.      What is the influence value of controlling time, distance and complexity within the wall perspectives of the balanced scorecard

3.      What is the influence value of controlling time, distance and complexity on the five forces model Porter

4.      What is the influence of value of controlling time distance and complexity on the value chain model Porter

Table 9 adapted from Strategic TDC matrix (Value Based Management.net, 2012)





















Impact/Value framework

Michael Hammer and Glenn Mangurian and the Impact/Value Framework, used to think about the value of Information Technology.

·         Time: compression is important

·         Distance: geographical limitations are significant

·         Relationships: can be redefined

o   efficiency is doing the right thing

o   effectiveness is doing the right thing

o   innovation is doing new things

A.    Strategic benefits

a.      competitive advantage

b.      alignment

c.       customer relations

B.      Informational benefits

a.      information access

b.      information quality

c.       information flexibility

C.     Transactional benefits

a.      communications efficiency

b.      systems development efficiency

c.       business efficiency









Accelerate business process

·          Reduce information float

*        Create service excellence


Increase market size

·          Ensure global management control

*        Penetrate new markets


Bypass intermediaries

·          Replicate scarce knowledge

*        Build networks


12 principles of the network economy

From a ground breaking article in Wired, 5th September 1997, Kevin Kelly described the twelve Principals of the network economy he proposes four axes for these new rules:

1.      Directly from innovation

2.      Agility

3.      Domestication of the unknown

4.      Find, nurture, destroy

This was supposed to be governed by a set of twelve laws, and these are: the law of:

1.      connection

Embrace the raw power of the collapsing microcosms of chips and the exploding telecosom of connections.

2.      plenitude

More gives more.

It is mathematically proven: that the sum of a network increases as the square of the number of members. As the number of nodes increases arithmetically, the value of the network increases exponentially.

3.      exponential value

Success is nonlinear.

4.      tipping points

Significant proceeds momentum: Tipping points, balances and fulcrums.

5.      increasing returns

Make virtuous circles: value explodes with membership, and in the value explosion it sucks in more members compounding results.

6.      inverse pricing

Anticipate the cheap; something better will be less expensive.

7.      generosity

Follow the free, the marginal cost of an additional copy is near zero, value appreciates in proportion to abundance; a flood increases the value all round.

8.      allegiance

Feed the web first. The distinguishing characteristic of networks is they have no clear centre and no clear at bandwidth, only lines of demarcation in information transit. The distinction between us and them has become less meaningful.

9.      devolution

Let go at the top.

10.  displacement

The net wins.

11.  churn

Seek sustainable disequilibrium. Changing is the rapid difference; Churning is the force and power hovering about the edges of chaos.

12.  inefficiencies

Do not solve problems. Productivity is not the bottle imagination seizing opportunities is. As Peter Drucker said “do not solve problems, seek opportunities”.

Bricks and clicks

Bricks and clicks strategies are the leveraging of:

·         core competencies

·         existing supplier networks

·         existing distribution channel

·         brand equity

·         trust

·         existing customer base

·         lower weight to average capital

·         organisational learning

Delta model

Is the strategy organising framework developed by Dean Wilde and Orlando Hax, it aims to assess in the articulation and implementation of effective corporate and business strategy. The aim of the game is to attract, satisfy and retain the customer.

The delta model contains the following elements

·         Strategic triangle

It is used in defining strategic position and has typically three strategic options best product customer solutions and systems lock in.

·         Aligning the strategic options with the enterprise activities

·         Adaptive processes

·         Metrics

The connectivity that the network economy offers opportunities to create positions and structures based on customer relationships in our aims at creating unbreakable, deep knowledge based, and close relationships we aim at customer bonding.

Some thrust statements:

·         Pursue global integrated value chain leadership

·         Selectively expand into value chain adjacencies

·         Optimise and extract full value from DHC core – origination

·         Grow into new adjacent businesses building on the latent assets and capabilities that we have

·         Downsize/exit/prune unattractive businesses, origins, profit centres and activities

·         To vigorously promote research, teaching and outreach that will position DHC as a centre of excellence.

·         To attract and retain high calibre volunteer and administrative staff.

·         To vigorously pursue distance management, develop new relevant programs and periodically review the existing ones.

·         To provide integrated and modern information and communication technology facilities.

·         To aggressively develop linkages with local and regional institutions and partnership with industry.

·         To undertake vigorous fund raising drive by aggressively pursuing consultancy, internally generated funds and enforcing fiscal discipline.

·         To create an organizational culture that enhances efficiency, discipline and commitment.

·         To improve upon physical infrastructure and support services to enhance volunteering, learning and advice.

·         To improve upon management capacity and institutional governance structure.

·         To create a conducive, working environment this will recognise equal opportunities for: volunteers, staff and customers.

SIS general enterprise application suit product features:

·         Office

·         email and calendars

·         conferencing

·         file sharing

·         website

·         office web apps

·         mobility

·         trust and security

10 essential ingredients of a killer Windows 8 business PC


Data and the enterprise








Key Result Area























Change Management Theory

·         Different people react differently to change: a spectrum of change from stability to change

·         Everyone has fundamental needs that have to be met: The need for control; the need for inclusion; the need for openness.

·         Change often involves a loss, and people go through the "loss curve": S-hock, A-nger, R-ejection, A-cceptance, H-ealing

·         Expectations need to be managed realistically

·         Fears have to be dealt with

"Change is the only constant." Heraclitus, Greek philosopher


Kotter introduced his eight-step change process in his 1995 book, "Leading Change."

Create Urgency

1.      Identify potential threats, and develop scenarios showing what could happen in the future.

2.      Examine opportunities that should be, or could be, exploited.