You have recently been hired to serve as the chief information officer (CIO) for a start-up education services company. The company’s stated mission is to provide IT instructors worldwide with direct input from industry experts and subject matter experts concerning IT standards and best practices. Your company promises to help instructors use cutting-edge teaching ideas gathered from technology professionals and educators worldwide.
The company of 75 employees has a goal of becoming an international, social networking clearinghouse for high school, community college, and university instructors of technical concepts and topics. This social network relies heavily on submissions from both educators and technology professionals who are not necessarily instructors.
The company already has roughly 10,000 contributors, growing around 3% each month for the last year. Although headquarters is in Seattle, Washington, the company has created partnerships with universities, corporate training centers, and other teaching academic institutions around the world. Several of the more notable partners are in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and Taipei, Taiwan. The company has spent 4% of its annual revenue on an aggressive marketing and search engine optimization campaign in these areas to attract contributors.
The chief executive officer (CEO) and the investors believe the company provides a unique offering, as long as making contributions is simple and the information is organized in a way that allows contributions to remain relevant to the company’s markets and enables contributed information to be easily accessed.
Currently, the company accepts contributions through a web interface and through documents sent via e-mail. The CEO is concerned that e-mail is old-fashioned and discourages contributions.
Contributions are not organized internally in such a manner that company editors are able to do their jobs efficiently. A significant portion of your social networking community, 15%, is dissatisfied with how organization is provided on the website. Some of the more influential members have indicated that the content reveals a bias toward technology professionals and educators in the United States.
Many times, the web server has become overwhelmed by contributions. At other times, the servers are operating at only one quarter of their capacity. Before your arrival, company management has argued over the cost of increased server room space and bandwidth, due to the requests coming in bursts.
Also, the IT and marketing departments disagree on how to make it simple for contributors to submit while maintaining a format for the submitted information that will be useful to the company.
A new submission engine needs to
• accept data from multiple sources (e.g., Internet, Twitter),
• organize data,
• make data presentable for the editing team,
• allow submissions to be highlighted from various parts of the world,
• store the data securely,
• make it easy for the company to back up and restore data, and
• provide sufficient bandwidth for people to submit ideas at all times.
Additionally, the CEO is concerned that the company’s thinking has grown increasingly insular. The CEO believes that more collaboration and input is needed at a company level, and has therefore proposed bringing on a small staff drawn from the two largest company markets, which are Brazil and Taiwan.
A. Develop a submission engine plan that addresses the concerns in the scenario.
1. a network map that includes the following:
• Where this submission engine will reside
• Who will host and support the submission engine
• How this submission engine and its data will be protected
2. Explain how the submission engine plan will handle submissions in other languages, including Portuguese and Mandarin.
3. Explain how you will use technologies to help alleviate the concerns that the content is biased toward technology professionals and educators in the United States.
4. Discuss which technologies can help address the bandwidth and server lag time issues affecting users in the scenario.
5. Discuss how you will use technologies to organize information to make it more accessible for users and employees.
B. Discuss how partners based in Brazil and Taiwan will use key technologies to communicate effectively with each other and with the corporate office in Seattle.
C. Discuss which technology trends will support the company’s mission.
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