Technology Applied in E-Business

This project tries to find advances in information technology that can be applied in e-business to improve customer relations. The main hypothesis being tested is whether customer relations can be improved by using e-business activities. This research also tries to determine certain areas in customer relations that can be improved by using e-business practices. It also tries to establish whether sales of products through the internet can be implemented as methods of payment in complimentary to other online payment processing methods. This study also tries to create awareness on the significance of electronic systems to conduct customer services. Tit tires to explain to business personnel the methods that they can use to conduct e-business in their organizations. The hypothesis that this research tries to answer is whether e-business practices contribute to any positive outcome for organizations. The other hypothesis that this study tries to test is whether the practice of e-business is related to reduced costs of operation.

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Academic issues that this research tries to address?

There are many issues related to e-business that have not been clarified in academic materials and it is important that they are addressed in this project. Some of those issues include the following:

 I. There has been little research in academic sources that provide information on the impacts of e-business on customer relations in business organizations.

 II. Some academic materials argue that the use of electronic materials in managing customer information is irrelevant to the success of a business.

 III. Most academic materials do not provide substantial support for the use of the internet as a method of marketing products to customers while the use of online payments have also been ignored by most academic studies.

The expected central argument within the research?

This research tries to argue that the use of electronic media such as customer database and management of intra organization processes through the use electronic media can result into improved performance of an organization. It argues that advances in information technology such as the use of electronic equipment to keep records of transactions that have taken place and customer information can result into high efficiency and reduced costs of conducting businesses. It also argues that intra organizational communication can be improved by including the use of electronic media to communicate between executives of an organization. It provides support for the use of electronic media as a method of managing operations in an organization.

Why it is important to undertake this research

This research is significant because it provides an argument whether various forms of e-business activities contribute to improvement of customer relations in organizations. This research also acts as a guide on approaches that can be used to achieve customer relations by the use of e-business approaches. These include the use of customer databases during intra organizational communication techniques. The findings of this research will also be useful for businessmen on the techniques they can apply in order to achieve positive impacts of e-business practices in their organizations.

Despite the emphasis of this research on the benefits that are associated with e-business, it does not address certain limitations that organizations which practice this form of business will face. For instance, it does not consider the costs associated with installation of expensive electronic equipment into the business that is likely to be incurred by the business. It also ignores the consequences that may result when electronic equipment breaks down such as loss of customer data. This is considered an area where written materials are preferred in pace of electronic materials. It also ignores the costs that will be incurred in training staffs to use these methods of creating efficient customer relations. It also ignores the errors that might be caused when using these systems to manage customer information.

Research Methodology

The main methods that will be used is Quantitative (primary sources)

The study will involve primary data collection from businesses in Texas with the purpose of obtaining first hand information regarding their e-business practices and the effects that have been brought to customer relations activities. The results of data collection will be used to conduct analysis of the effects of e-business practices on business operations and customer relations.

Techniques that will be used within this research Approach

This study will involve the use of primary data collection methods such as interviews and questionnaires. The questionnaires will be mailed to managers of these organizations containing questions that will be answered by them and returned. The questionnaires will require them to identify some of e-business activities that are used to improve customer relations. The questions will also require them to identify the impacts that have been brought as a result of introduction of e-business in their organizations.  Those who will not be reached by mails will be given the questions through e-mails. Interviews will also be conducted by visiting these companies and asking the managers to provide evidence of positive feedback that has been brought by the use of e-business on customer relations in their organizations. Focus groups will also be contacted by visiting organizations that specialize on provision of e-business advices. These groups will be asked to determine the effects of e-business that have been observed in their organizations in addition to methods in which e-business can be practiced in these organizations.

Why  this general research approach has been used

The use of primary methods of data collection is important in this project because of the following advantages related to primary data collection:

 i. The data collected using primary methods such as the use of questionnaires are first hand and cannot be distorted

 ii. The data obtained from primary methods are practical and gives the exact information that is required during the study

 iii.  Data collection method such as questionnaires can be conducted by researchers and other people with less possibility of affecting its reliability or ability.

 iv.  It is possible to quantify the findings of the research by the use of questionnaires and other software. This assist in obtaining descriptive characteristics of the data such as mean, median, mode and standard deviation.

Literature or research method has led to belief that this would be the best approach

The method of research that has led to the choice of primary data collection methods for this research is the literature review. In the literature review, there are a number of studies that have been conducted to determine the effects of e-business on customer relations. The literature review provides methods that are used to collect information from customers and approaches that are used to keep the data in the electronic systems to assist in communication with customers and relating with customers. The literature review also provides methods that can be used to store data electronically such as the use of digitized electronic information and reception of goods through electronic networks that result into improved relationship with customers. The use of questionnaires will be used to prove these arguments by asking respondents to provide their views regarding these assertions of the literature review.

The literature review also explains that the use customer information such as digitized information results into reduced costs of operation for businesses. Thus the use of primary data collection will involve an investigation of the relationship between the use of e-business practices and costs of operation.

If a sample is used in terms of organizations or individuals, the sample would be considered   appropriate to research questions because of the following reasons:

One of the reasons is that would be that the sample will be considered important in establishing electronic methods that are used to improve customer relations. The findings from these samples will give the overall effect of e-business in other businesses The sample will also be able to assist in identifying the positive impacts that have been brought to organizations as a result of introduction of e-business practices in the organization.

Have I agreed to access my sample?

The research process will involve an access to the samples by visiting the companies in Texas and individuals who are conversant in e-business. In the companies visited, managers will be required to answer questions to the interviews and the results of the interviews process will be used for analysis of the research process. The outcome from individual respondents will also be used to conducts statistical analysis of the response from these respondents.

Will the sample size be appropriate?

The sample size will consist of a total of 20 companies and 30 individuals. The managers of these companies will be interviewed concerning the effects of e-business in their organizations. The results from 20 companies will be used as a measure of the level of accuracy and reliability of the research findings. Responses from questionnaires issued to the 30 individuals will also be compared to arrive at the most accurate data for analysis of the findings of the research.

How the information gathered will be analyzed

The information gathered will be used to analyze the characteristics of e-business in these companies by the use of descriptive statistics such as mean, median and mode. The data from primary research will also be used to compute graphs showing the relationship between level of customer relations and corresponding level of use of e-business techniques in the organization. These results will be useful in coming up with conclusion regarding the relationship between e-business practices and customer relations

Recommendations you make likely to be “actioned” e.g. by company, individual, manager, etc.

If the results of the research shows that there is a positive relationship between e-business practices and customer relations, it will be recommended that managers in businesses apply these technologies in providing customer relations services. This is because their companies will be able to benefit more from the process than when traditional methods of customer relations are used. Individuals will also be recommended to encourage the use of electronic databases as a method of relating with their customers.

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