Strategies Pursued by Dell: The analysis of the case study of Dell revealed about the various kinds of operational strategies that are pursued by organisation in order to provide high quality products and services to its customers. There are some specific featured of the Dell’s operational strategies which makes it an important dominant player in the entire computer industry. The case analysis revealed that the most crucial strategy as pursued by Dell is that of direct selling strategy, whereby Dell performs direct selling of its computers and other IT related products to its final consumers. This direct selling strategy has proved to be highly beneficial to Dell in the sense that it allowed the company in not only identifying the needs and requirements of its final consumers, but it also helped the company in customising the products so that higher level of satisfaction to the final consumer can be achieved (Berman, 2007).
Further, this strategy of direct sales model has also allowed Dell in achieving efficiency in other operational areas, as the company can effectively perform the demand forecasting and thereby accurate volume of production of computers can become possible to organisation that needs to be produced to meet customer demands. This has allowed the attainment of cost effectiveness to Dell, as it is not required to stock inventory in abundance. The ability of the company to forecast demand has allowed it in applying the philosophy of Just-In-Time (JIT) and the ultimate effect of such philosophy is higher operational efficiency. There is a higher need for companies to achieve cost effectiveness in their operations in order to survive in this highly competitive business environment. The cost efficiency would allow them in effectively meeting their customer requirements and this is what Dell has focused in its operation which allowed it to become the most significant seller of computers across the industry (Morden, 2007).
The analysis of the case of Dell further revealed that its core strategy also includes the mass customisation. The 21st century business environment is mostly affected by the customers, as companies are required to pay adequate attention towards their customer likings, preferences and demand. Dell has adequately considered this point and it is quite effectively reflected in its mass customisation strategy whereby the company manufactures products and services addressing its customer requirements. Another important aspect of the operational strategy of Dell is that it builds strong relationships with its suppliers rather then integrating them within its existing operation. This is also regarded as a significant strategy of the company, as this has allowed it in making the most efficient purchases of its requirements in manufacturing computers. In addition to this, the feasibility of the Dell’s direct selling model, its ability to customise products and services, applying JIT philosophy and providing highly personalised services to customer have become possible because of its rigorous sharing of information with suppliers and customers (Scott, Lundgren and Thompson, 2011).
Opinion on the Dell’s Strategy: On the basis of evaluation as performed with respect to the important operational strategies as pursued by Dell, I have identified that the strategies are mostly aimed at achieving operational efficiency by the organisation. This has allowed Dell in transferring that effectiveness to final consumers in terms of timely meeting their demands as per the requirements and the ultimate effect is evident over its performance within the industry. Further, in my opinion, there is a significant need for the businesses to identify possible ways through which they can achieve cost efficiency in performing their operational activities. This is because, the consumers are highly price conscious and they look for higher value as against the money they pay for buying products. Dell has effectively realised this and it has considered for JIT philosophy which allows it in immediately meeting the customer demands without necessitating it to store inventory for longer duration.
In my opinion, although the company has achieved operational effectiveness, but this strategy of JIT also allowed it in effectively responding to customer requirements on time. This is because since the company did not store too much of inventory, so the introduction of new technology or product has also allowed the company in becoming the first to launch it into the market and as a result, it gains the benefit of first mover advantage. This indicates that all the major operational strategies as pursued by Dell are highly effective, as they all are inter-related and this allowed the company in achieving the most dominant position across the entire computing industry.
Product Design Case Study
IT Complexities in the Process of Product Design: This case study mainly describes about the complexities that the IT poses to the successful design of the products and services by companies in the 21st century business environment. The rapid development as identified in the field of technology has necessitated companies to introduce highly advanced and new technology within their products and this has made it extremely difficult for them to utilise the most effective technological tool in performing the design of their products. Technology is evident in respect to all kinds of products that are available in the market today, and at the same time, companies are regularly involved in the process of making the most advanced products by designing new additional features within their existing line of products. This has created significant problems to them in maintaining the cost of producing such products amidst such fast changing technological environment (Reiner and Schaper, 2010).
The advancement in technology has resulted into the application of wide range of technical tools in performing the design of products. Further, the diverse requirements on the part of customers has necessitated businesses to customise their products and services as per their requirements, and this has often put challenges on the development teams to realise the poor product architecture designs. The ultimate effect of such poor architectural designs is significant losses to the company in both the financial terms as well as to their reputation. Another major significant problem as identified within the case study in the process of designing products is that weak linkage with the business priorities. The tech-enabled products are no way contributing towards the overall accomplishment of the business strategy or they have conflicts within the existing business strategies of the organisation. The success in the designing of products can therefore be attained by way of considering technical aspects in the process (Reiner and Schaper, 2010).
Improving Product Designing by Integrating IT in the Process: The task of product designing can be improved significantly through effective integration of IT in the process of design. The technical initiatives on the part of companies are highly essential in order to achieve success within their existing processes of product design. Another major significant factor in the process of successful design of products is that the managers responsible for designing the products through considering the IT systems should be technical experts. This is because, the rapid development in the IT systems has made it complex situation for the non technical managers to even understand the features that needs to be considered in the performing the designing of the products. Hence, the case study indicates that the successful designing process of products requires sound technical manager that have the expertise in better understanding the technical terms and applying them in the product designing process (Reiner and Schaper, 2010).
The higher value in the process of designing the products can be accomplished by way of performing an alignment of the business goals with that of the engineering goals. A proper alignment is crucial towards the success of product design because it would help in making the most effective application of technology. In addition to this, the better designing of products can also be accomplished by way of achieving higher level of transparency across various organisational functions including IT, marketing, engineering and other product functions. This is mainly because, the transparency would allow the effective collaboration between all of them, as marketing department can provide important inputs in terms of customer requirements and preferences and this would allow the engineering department in incorporating the needs of the customers in the product design process. The resulting impact would be better overall design of the products by way of integrating the latest IT systems (Stewart, 2008).
The role of sound architecture is also identified as crucial in the product designing process. It becomes essential to focus on the subset of different architectures in order to ensure the designing process to be most efficient. A proper architecture allows for the better integration of software and hardware and the ultimate impact is better overall designing of the product. In addition to this, an integrated management approach is also needed in order to perform the development of tech-enabled products. The business as well as the technical teams needs to have a right focused approach from the beginning so that the overall process of designing the products by way of integrating the most relevant technology can be performed in a manner that ensures higher level of performance of the entire product (Reiner and Schaper, 2010).