OraTech Systems Private Limited – Methods in Business Research Report

OraTech Systems Private Limited was established in 1990 in Pakistan. During last 10 years, the company has emerged as a leading Information Technology company of the country. The primary business of the company is to sell the ORACLE products in Pakistan, for which OraTech is a licensed distributor of ORACLE products in Pakistan. Apart from this, OraTech also provides Technical support services and educational services, related to Oracle Products. Currently OraTech holds 85% of market share in database applications.

Besides their market share in the database applications in the market their Enterprise Resource Planning packages are also being sought at an increasing pace. The current trend of companies is to solicit help of software houses to get customized software for their companies and Oracle® has proven equal to that task of providing those customized solutions.

Being in Pakistan for over ten years has given OraTech the head start they needed for extensive penetration into the Pakistani market. However, their competitors have also not kept quite. They too have responded with Customized easy to use solutions and they are able to implement those choices.

 

Organization of the report

 

The report has three major sections. The first section gives information on the company that has given us the research problem. A statement of the management problems and objectives follows it. The research problem and research objectives are also given. The second section deals with data collection procedures, questionnaire administration and sampling.

Time and financial requirements

 

Our time was spent on a number of activities, which include questionnaire administration and data collection. Tabulation and analysis of the data required the majority of the time.  The most difficult part was contacting the organizations and obtaining time for the interviews. The topic was relatively new for us, so some time was needed to correctly apprehend the conclusions and the results that were given by the customers. Unfamiliarity with most of the terms was a major problem. This was overcome by contacting the people familiar with the Information Technology background and having adequate knowledge about the Industry. Data analysis and testing of the hypothesis were also two of the most significant activities carried out.

Transportation, Photocopying the Questionnaires, disbursement of questionnaires and Printing were a strain on our limited budget.

 

Management Problem and Objectives

The Management of OraTech is constantly concerned about the value it is delivering to its customers. As technology changes with great rapidity and new and innovative solutions are being sought OraTech finds itself in a unique position. It can both drift with the change, and become an insignificant player or it can become a change agent.

The Pakistani market as was told to us is in the ‘Development’ stage[1]. By this it was meant that needs are being identified and no software company has a firm foothold. This is due the fact that in the Development stage only the Primary demand expands and the variety seeking behavior is present. The software companies in Pakistan hence are not only seeking profits but also trying to develop the market. Their objective is to make the Pakistani economy a fully technology driven force which can easily be integrated with the world economy.

This brings us to the management problem. The management wanted to know:

  1. Their current market share,
  2. The perception of their customers and non-customers about them,
  • The involvement of Enterprise Resource Planning systems in locally operational companies,
  1. The future of Enterprise Resource planning applications in Pakistan.
  2. How can Oracle® can increase its existing Customer base,
  3. How can it attract new customers?

These were the six questions to which the management needed answers and hence the project given to us.

 

Research Problem and Objectives

Being the market leaders, OraTech want to maintain its supremacy and remain ahead of its competitors. The company considers its customers to be an asset, and always look for customer satisfaction. The cost of acquiring a new customer is much higher then than the customer retention cost. Also the trends in the Information Technology sector are changing so much that there needs to be constant update on the version, features and attributes of the software packages available to us. Hence, our problem was data collection and combined with recommendations and trying to explore the direction in which the future demands of corporations are going to go when we talked about software capabilities.

 

Following are the objectives of the research:

  1. To obtain the perception of the customers about Oracle products, including various versions being used.
  2. To come up with an accurate estimate of the current market share.
  • To identify other database applications that are also used in the market
  1. To identify the strengths and weaknesses of Oracle products.
  2. To identify the Enterprise Resource planning applications mostly used by the companies.
  3. To analyse customer liking of various attributes of Enterprise Resource Planning systems customised by OraTech.
  • To analyse the customer perception on technical support services
  • To obtain suggestions from customers to improve the services.

 

RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

Nature of Survey Research

 

For this project, Personal Interviews were conducted with the heads of different Information Technology departments. In personal interviews, interviewers have visited the OraTech customers in their offices. In most of the cases appointments were taken in advance. Each personal interview takes around ten to fifteen minutes of time. For authenticity of personal interviews, visiting cards of customers were obtained.

 

Questionnaire Design

 

The questionnaire was divided into three portions. Each portion was directed towards a specific segment. The four segments of the questionnaire were as follows:

 

  1. About various Information Technology Application
  2. About Enterprise Resource Planning applications
  3. About Technical Support Services

 

Each portion contained questions specific to the domain. Some open ended questions were also asked, that included the customers perceptions, suggestions and comments about the products. At other places, attitude scales were used to measure the preference of the customers.

 

The questions varied from general to the specific category. Initial effort was done to build rapport with the customer and later the purpose of the research was revealed. The purpose was to keep the identity of the Organization a secret so that emotional bias does not creep in the questionnaires. The wording of the questions was kept simple. Alternative choices were presented for each question. For open ended questions, suggestions of the customers was asked, that were later analyzed.

 

Structure of Questionnaire

 

The majorities of the questions are multiple choice or close ended so that there is no possibility of interviewer bias.  Only a few are open ended because they were needed to test the customers’ attitude towards Ora Tech in general and the customized services that they offer like the implementation of Enterprise Resource Planning applications in particular.

 

In the questionnaire we have gone from unaided recall to aided recall in a series of steps.  There are a few general questions, which serve to hide the identity of the sponsor. We have tried to apply all the relevant concepts and techniques studied in this course. The semantic differential scale has been used to assess the level of consumer satisfaction with Ora Tech

 

 

SAMPLE DESIGN

Definition of Population

The population is defined as all the organizations that use Information Technology Applications.

Sampling Frame

For Personal interviews, only the companies located in Karachi have been selected.

Sampling Unit

Organization is taken as a sampling unit. Interviews are conducted of the Heads of IT departments, or other people responsible for handling and supervising Information Technology Applications.

Sampling Method Used

For Personal Interviews, the sampling method is non-probability, based on convenience. The organizations were divided into area-wise groups, and each group-member was assigned to carryout survey of its area.

Sample Size

Sample size was taken as 10% of the population (30 organizations)

Pretest

Pretesting questionnaires is one of the most important steps in questionnaire design. It helps to reveal flaws in the questionnaire, which can be corrected. We pretested the questionnaire to examine the following issues:

 

  • We wanted to ensure that the sentence structure was correct and that respondents did not have any problem understanding it.
  • We to ascertain how easily the different persons could interpret the questions and understand the technical language used in the questionnaires
  • The purpose was being fulfilled by the questions being asked or should we rephrase the questions according to the needs and the requirements of the users.

 

We took an approximately 17% sample size that is a total number of 5 firms to pretest the questionnaire and found some problems associated with the questionnaire design. Our questionnaire was too technical in nature in certain circumstances. The question # 3 related to the use of the Information Technology applications used in the organization proved to be complex. The different persons could not comprehend the purpose of the question. The question was related to the use of Information Technology applications in the organization and the software employed for the particular purpose.

 

The questionnaire also did not measure the features of Oracle properly. Only two options were provided initially, which proved to be an inhibiting factor for the end users. The original questionnaire was relatively complex and required interpretation on our part in some questions that led to the danger of interviewer bias creeping in.

 

Some changes were made in the questionnaire and the questionnaire was reprinted and distributed so that responses could be accurately gauged.

 

The changes made were:

 

  • An explanation of question # 3 in the Oracle section was added that was an attempt to obtain correct responses. The respondents were asked to identify the Information Technology applications used in their organizations and the software employed for the respective purpose. The explanation provided related to the use of Micro Soft Word for the use of Word Processing. This helped the respondents in answering the questions easily and in its’ interpretation. The response obtained was more accurate and provided correct information.

 

  • The wording of the questions were changed subsequently to ensure that the questions were asked in a continuos sequence. The language was also modified to make it more user friendly and less technical in nature

 

 

  • More options were provided with respect to the Enterprise Resource Planning applications being used in the organizations during the next 5 years. This increased the response rate and gave us more options

 

  • Other companies like Microsoft, Cal Soft and Cres Soft were added to reduce the bias that may creep in because of telescoping and provide the person with alternative choices available.

 

 

  • Questions related to the different attributes of the technical services provided by Ora Tech were added to obtain a wide variety of responses

 

  • Other open ended questions relating to the version of the Oracle being used currently were added to correctly determine the version of the Oracle being used in the market. More options were also given related to the most liked and disliked features of Oracle Products

 

After making theses changes the questionnaires were once again administered. Therefore the responses obtained after the pretest were most accurate. The language used was less technical in nature and the features that were being judged were also modified to make them more understandable.

Limitations

 

The limitations that we had to deal with are as follows:

 

  • One of the limitations was our lack of experience as researchers. Nevertheless we have tried to apply the concepts we have learnt in this course in our report as much as we could.

 

  • Another problem was a lack of awareness about the Information Technology terminology used and its’ application. However, this was overcome by asking the concerned persons the meaning of difficult and technical words.

 

  • Another problem was that respondents often lost interest in the questionnaire towards the end because of the long length of the questionnaire. Hence there was the danger of Maturity error creeping in the sampling process. There is an approximation made of 5% error for this purpose.

 

Analysis of Questionnaires

Section A: About Information Technology Applications

 

Q # 1. Which Operating System is used in your company?

q  Windows 98         q  Windows NT  q  LINUX

q  UNIX                            q APPLE    q Other (Please Specify)  ____________

 

Objective: This was the first question of the questionnaire. The specific section dealt with Oracle products and their respective use. The purpose of asking the question was to assess the types of Operating systems used in the respective Organizations. The purpose of asking the question was two fold:

 

  1. Develop rapport and understanding with the customer so that the customer feels easy and willing to divulge the necessary information.

 

  1. Asses the Types of Operating systems used by different organizations to comprehend which Operating System is the most popular and most widely used in each organization. Ora Tech wanted to comprehend the market share of the Types of existing Softwares used by the different organizations. Due to the recent issue of Piracy, Microsoft and other companies have unleashed a vicious campaign against the local software providers. The piracy issue is expected to gain strength in the near future as the issue of copyrights gains strength. Ora Tech is the sole distributor of Oracle products in the market and commands an overwhelming majority. Ora Tech wanted to find out which type of Operating System is the most popular one so that they can concentrate their efforts on developing improved features of that particular software and occupy a niche in the market.

 

 

Table 1.1

 

Type of Operating System Used Number of Respondents
Windows 98 24
Windows NT 18
Unix 10
Linux 6
Apple 4
Others 0

 

The above table shows the operating system used by the companies, Windows 98 has proved to be the most popular operating system used by the respective companies. Similarly, companies use Windows NT because of the networking features of Windows NT. Other systems used are Unix and Linux respectively.

Bar Chart 1.1

The bar chart below shows the Operating System being used by the Organization.

 

The bar chart 1.1 illustrates the number of users that specified Windows 98 as the most widely used operating system, which was followed by Windows NT, which 18 respondents answered. Since the organizations use Windows 98 for individual use, whereas Windows NT is used for Networking purposes. Apple is a relatively unknown brand name in the Pakistani market, so the usage is the least. This can help Ora Tech to identify the possible opportunities that exist in the Software market and which Operating system to target for end users.

Q # 2

The Operating System used in Your Organization is:

q Custom-made   q  Tailor-made                      q Mixed

 

Objective: The purpose of asking the specific question was to gauge the level of the type of Operating System used in the e Organizations respectively. The purpose was to explore the potential of new avenues for OraTech in the market. The purpose was to move from the specific purpose to the general and introduce the name of the company subsequently. It also served to assess the type of Operating system used by the Organizations. Custom made referred to a system implemented by a particular company, which is tailored according to the requirements of the Company specifically. Tailor made refers to a system, which can be referred to as on the shelf system available that the companies use. Mixed indicates a combination of both the types of Operating Systems. As the analysis suggests, the companies use the Custom made Operating systems in their Organizations. The rest of the companies use Taylor made systems where as an insignificant amount of respondents indicated that they used the  mixed operating systems. For personal users, the Operating system was Taylor made or off the shelf, where as in the case of the Operating systems developed for clients and end users, the Custom made version was used.

 

 

Table 1.2

 

Type of Operating System Used Number of Respondents Percentage %
Custom Made 27 90
Tailor Made 2 7
Mixed 1 3

 

The above Table illustrates that the majority of the users use Custom made type of Operating Systems in their respective Organizations. This fact holds great importance for Ora Tech as it can expand it market beyond Oracle products and diversify the product line. 90 % of the respondents’ use Custom made Operating software systems whereas only 7% of the respondents use Tailor made products.

 

Pie Chart 1.2

The above Pie Chart illustrates that 87% of the users use Custom made Operating Systems, whereas 10% of the respondents indicated that they use tailor-made systems in their Organizations. Only 3% of the respondents indicated that they prefer to use mixed system in their organization.

 

  1. What Information Technology applications do you use? Please indicate the Software employed for that application. ( For example, MS Word for Word Processing)
  • Word Processing
  • Spreadsheets
  • Publishing
  • Graphics
  • Communication/E-Mail
  • Databases
  • Others (Please Specify)

 

Objective: This was the main question of the questionnaire as the objective was to analyze the types of Information Technology applications used by the Organizations and the respective software employed for the particular application. The purpose was to identify the different types of software applications used by the Organizations in their day to day operation. The purpose was to bring the attention of the use of data bases in the organization as one of the choices related to the type of Information Technology application used in the organization. The method used I the questionnaires was that of aided recall and the emphasis was on the introduction of databases and Oracle as the choice in the subsequent sections. The purpose was also to analyze the different types of applications used by the Organization so that Ora Tech could use the information for it’s  future referral. The company wanted to know in which direction the Information Technology Industry is heading and this question identified the major applications employed by the Organizations and the Softwares used. Ora Tech can carve a niche for itself by concentrating on the major Information Technology applications used and the software employed for their particular application. Since this is an open ended question, the analysis of each choice has been done separately so that the reader gets a clear idea of the direction of the Information Technology industry of Pakistan.

 

Table 1.3i

 

Type of ApplicationUsed Softwares (s)Employed Number ofRespondents

Word Processing

Micro Soft Word 30

 

As can be seen from the above table, all the respondents indicated Micro Soft Word as the major application used for Word Processing. The Organizations used to use other softwares like Word Star and Lotus Notes for Word Processing, but these soft wares have become antiquated with the passage of time.

 

 

Table 1.3ii

 

Type of ApplicationUsed Softwares (s)Employed Number ofRespondents

Spread Sheets

Micro Soft ExcelLotus Spread Sheet 305

 

The above table indicates the use of spread sheets in the different Organizations. Since spreadsheets are a common feature, all the respondents marked this application. Microsoft Excel is the most commonly used feature in the Spread sheets as all the Organizations surveyed used Micro Soft Excel. This was followed by Lotus spread sheets used by 8 respondents.

 

 

Table 1.3iii

 

 

Type of ApplicationUsed Softwares (s)Employed Number ofRespondents

Publishing

Adobe Photo ShopCorel DrawAcrobat  Reader 1694

 

The above table illustrates that the out of the 30 respondents, 16 use adobe photo shop. This has proved to be the most popular software used for Publishing. 9 respondents identified Corel Draw as the second most popular operating feature used in their organizations. Only four respondents identified Acrobat Reader as the software used for publishing purposes.

 

 

Table 1.3 IV

 

 

Type of ApplicationUsed Softwares (s)Employed Number ofRespondents

Graphics

ACDSEE 3Paint Shop ProMacro Media Free Hand 22168

 

The above table illustrates that the most common software used for Graphics is ACDSEE 3 which 22 respondents use out of 30. Similarly, Paint shop Pro 3 is the second most widely used software is paint shop pro which 16 respondents use. Macro media Free Hand is also another popular software used that 8 Respondents identified. Graphics is widely used by many organizations and many companies use multiple software for graphics use.

 

 

 

Graph 1.3 IV

 

The above column with depth indicates that the most popular software used for Publishing is ACDSEE3, which 22 respondents identified. Paint shop Pro and Macro Media Freehand follow this respectively. The software that has proved to be the most favored for targeting potential customers has been ACDSEE3 and Ora Tech should develop customized solutions for this software.

Table 1.3 V

 

 

Type of ApplicationUsed Softwares (s)Employed Number ofRespondents

Communication/ E-mail

Internet Explorer 4Netscape NavigatorM S Outlook ExpressNet 2 Phone

CC Mail

Net Meeting

 

27221914

10

4

 

Communication needs have expanded beyond belief in the present world. The most widely used software used by the companies is the Internet Explorer 4 Edition. The main reason that can be attributed to the fact that the Internet Explorer 4 Edition comes with the customized version of Windows 98 and other softwares provided. This can be attributed to the fact that almost all the companies use the particular Operating system of Windows 98. The other softwares employed for communication vary from company to company on o the needs of the particular Organization. Net 2 Phone and CC mail are used by 14 and 10 respondents respectively, whereas only 4 respondents identified net meeting as the software used in their organization.

Graph 1.3 V

 

The graph below shows the usage of different programs used for Communication and E-Mail.

The above bar chart clearly indicates that the most commonly used feature for communication and e-mail is Internet Explorer 4 edition as it is available with the Operating System of Windows 98 and the Millenium edition. Netscape is in close competition and commands a good market share. Net 2 Phone and other related softwares are used when the need arise of communicating outside the country or for business purposes.

 

 

 

Table 1.3VI

 

Type of ApplicationUsed Softwares (s)Employed Number ofRespondents

Databases

OracleFox ProMs Access

 

 

18128

 

The above table shows that Oracle is the most widely used Data Base software among the applications employed by the different Organizations. This is followed by Fox Pro which is quite popular as 12 users indicated that they used Fox Pro in their Organizations. MS Access is also used, but presently, the use is limited.

 

Graph 1.3 VI
The above cone diagram illustrates that Oracle is the most commonly used Database software in the Organizations respectively. This is followed by Fox Pro, Ms Access and Cobol respectively. This was the most important question as it pertained to the use of Data Bases and served as the focal point for future questions.

 

 

Q # 4. Which of the following Database Management Systems are used in your organization?

q Cobol   q  FoxPro     q  MS Access     q Sybase

q Dbase    q  Informix    q  Oracle    q Other

 

Objective:  The purpose was to evaluate the other databases that the customers use part from Oracle.

 

 Analysis: This analysis may lead to the features of other databases not in Oracle, that the customers like. This analysis will help in identifying new features for upcoming versions of Oracle Products. Similarly, an estimate can be made of the market share of the existing base that Oracle occupies and the share of the rest of the databases commanded in the market. As can be seen from the data Oracle occupies 60% of the market share followed by Fox Pro and MS Access. The main reason for asking the above question was to identify the databases applications used in Pakistan and the trend that is likely to continue in the future.

Table 1.4

 

 

Oracle 20 67%
Fox Pro 12 40%
MS Access 8 23%
Cobol 2 7%

 

The table above shows the responses of the Organizations that have identified the various databases that they use. Oracle has emerged as the leader, as 60% of the Organizations use Oracle as the main database Operating system respectively. This will help Ora Tech concentrate on developing new features for these databases as well. Ora Tech will benefit by developing customized features of Fox Pro sand MS Access in the future.

 

Graph 1.4

 

The Bar chart illustrates the market leadership of Oracle compared to the other databases in the market. Oracle has taken the lead in the database management systems and has emerged as the market leader in the type of databases used. Close in competition is FoxPro and MS Access. Ora Tech should develop features for these databases if it wants to retain its supremacy. However, the use of Oracle is in limited stages is in Pakistan. Companies are not fully aware o the features of the product and are reluctant to use it on a large scale.

 

 

 

Q # 5  Which Version of Oracle are you currently using in your organization………

Objective: The reason for asking the above question was to determine what is the most popular version of Oracle currently being used in the Organizations respectively. Ora Tech presently offers customized solutions of Oracle to its different clients. It wanted to determine which is the most popular version of Oracle being used in the different Organizations and what is the current market share of the particular version.

 

Analysis: As can be seen from the table below and the graphs, version 7 and version 8 and 8I of Oracle command equal market shares respectively with 39% of the total usage in both the cases. 12 Respondents identified both Versions 7 and 8 and 81 as the one being currently used in their organizations. 7 respondents use both the 7 and the 8 version of Oracle respectively. There are some features of version 8, not included in version 7, so the companies may not be using those features.

 

 

Table 1.5

 

 

Version 7 12
Version 8 or 8I 12
Version 7 and 8 6

 

The above table indicates that out of the 30 respondents, 12 use Version 7 of Oracle. 12 other respondents use version 8 or 8I OF Oracle. Only 6 respondents or 23% of the respondents use both the versions of Oracle.

 

Figure 5

 

The above Pie Chart illustrates that the version 7 of Oracle is used by  38 % of the respondents. Similarly, 38 % of the respondents use Version 8 or 8I of Oracle. Only 12 respondents have identified that they use both the versions of Oracle I their respective Organizations.

 

Q # 6        Identify three features you like most about Oracle’s performance:

  1. ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
  2. ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
  3. ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

 

 Purpose: This question was asked to identify which features Oracle Users mostly like. This was an open-ended question, and the interviewee was asked to fill three features that he/she likes the most in Oracle Products. The purpose was to identify the features of Oracle’s performance that the users most like. Ora Tech wanted to assess the features of Oracle which are the most liked by the respondents so that it can be aware of these features and improve upon them.

 

 Analysis: The analysis revealed that the most liked features of Oracle’s performance were Security, Robustness, Multi-user Access, SQL Interface, User Friendliness, Architecture, Technical Support on Internet, Wide variety of Operating System Support and web enabled Technology. These responses came from different persons depending on their perception about Oracle’s performance. It will benefit Ora Tech to improve on the features that the persons have identified that they like most about Oracle’s performance. From the responses given and looking at table 6 as well a s figure 6, we can easily assess the fact that the most liked features about Oracle’s performance have been the following:

  • Security 60%
  • Robustness 30%
  • Multi-user Access 20%
  • Flexible Design 17%
  • SQL Interface 13%
  • User Friendliness 13%
  • Architecture 10%

Ora Tech will be well advised to develop the above mentioned features of Oracle and enhance its market share.

 

 

Table 6

Security 18
Robustness                   10
Multiuser Access 6
Flexible Design 5
SQL Interface 4
User Friendliness 4
Architecture 3
Technical Support on Internet 3
Wide variety of OS support 3
Web enabled technology 3

 

The above paragraph illustrates the most liked about features of Oracle. The numbers of respondents have indicated that they like security, Robustness and Multi-user Access as the most liked features of Oracle. Ora Tech should improve the above features of Oracle to gain more market share.
Figure 1.6

The above figure indicates that the most widely used feature of Oracle products is Security, which 18 respondents out of a total of 30 respondents, or 60% of the total respondents identified. This is followed by Robustness and Multi User Access that is the most liked features of Oracle’s performance. Other features are also important which make Oracle the most widely used database application.

 

 

Q # 7 Also identify three things you do not like Oracle’s performance:

  1. ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
  2. ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
  3. ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

 

Objective: The main purpose was to identify the three features that users did not like about Oracle’s performance. This was another open-ended question that related to the performance of Oracle. The real purpose was to identify those features that the respondents did not like about Oracle’s performance. Ora Tech wanted to improve upon the existing services that it provides to it’s clients. By identifying those features of Oracle’s performance that respondents did not like about Oracle’s performance. Hence Ora Tech could offer customized solutions and services to its clients in a better way by taking care of the features identified.

Analysis:  The tables 1.6 as well as figure 1.6 clearly indicates that the most disliked feature of Oracle’s performance are:

  • Bad Interface of Reports 20%
  • Bad interface of forms 17%
  • Complexity                                                                                 13%

 

  • Resource Requirements 13%
  • Lack of support on various Operating Systems 10%
  • Limited support in Pakistan                                                                    10%
  • Limited Wizards 10%
  • The cost of the Soft ware itself. 7%

 

The above analysis indicates that the respondents do not like the bad interface of forms and reports that Oracle generates. Another commonly disliked feature about Oracle’s performance has been the cost associated with it. This is likely to go up in the future as the issue of piracy gathers momentum and the trend towards licensed

Software develops.

 

Table 1.7

Bad Interface of Reports 6
Bad interface of forms 5
Complexity 4
Resource Requirements 4
Lack of support on various OS 3
Limited support in Pakistan 3
Costly 3
Limited Wizards 2

The above table indicates that the most commonly disliked features of Oracle have been the Bad Interface of reports and forms which is followed by the complexity of the product as indicated by the number of respondents.

 

Figure 1.7

. The above Pie Chart shows the different features of Oracle’s performance. The most distinguishing feature is the BAD Interface of reports and forms that have been identified in the case of Oracles’ performance. Ora Tech can capitalize on the base by improving the above mentioned features of Oracle’s performance.

SECTION B

Enterprise Resource Planning Applications

Q: Does Your Organisation use Enterprise Resource Planning Applications?

‚ Yes                                                                          ‚ No

Objective

This dichotomous question was asked to determine the involvement of Information technology in the operations of the company. As our population definition required that the company in question must have a well-developed Information System. This was gauged to see whether the company is currently computerising its operations or not.

 

Analysis

The sample revealed a great deal of usage of Enterprise Resource Planning systems. A total of 28 companies answered yes to this particular question. This meant that many companies have incorporated Enterprise Resource Planning system in their organisations. The companies believe that the implementation of such systems will have a positive effect on their productivity and efficiency. They would be able to actualise the benefits of Technology systems and gain benefit in the future.

 

However, care must be taken to note that all companies do not use the same type of Enterprise Resource Planning systems. Their choice is determined by their peculiar nature. Hence, the importance of customised solutions and software attuned to the needs of the company in question.

 

Those companies which answered in the negative are also users of Information Technology, but they do not think that a high-tech solution is what suits them partly due to operational simplicity or the forbidding costs. However, as time changes and when new solutions shall be developed then, we can achieve a 100% response on the usage of Enterprise Resource Planning systems.

 

As responses indicate there is great market for Enterprise Resource Planning systems and OraTech must be willing to satisfy the needs of companies who use Enterprise Resource Planning system. The gaps in the actual needs and the product designed for the mass market can be filled if OraTech tries to concentrate on these systems

 

TABLE 2.1

 

Does Your Organisation use Enterprise Resource Planning Applications?
YES NO
28 2

Table 2.1. this table shows how many companies out of the 30 we covered used Enterprise Resource Planning systems. 28 companies did use them and the rest 2 did not.

 

Chart 2.1

The above chart indicates that out of the 30 respondents surveyed, 28 respondents identified that they used Enterprise Resource Planning Applications in their respective Organizations. Only 2 respondents identified that they did not use Enterprise Resource Planning Application System in their respective Organizations. This is a popular feature in many Organizations that is liked because of the benefits it provides in user interface and design.

 

 

Q: Are the Enterprise Resource Planning Systems:

‚  Designed by Your Organisation                 ‚ Some Other Company does it for You

Objective

This dichotomous question was asked to see whether the companies believe in inward looking strategy i.e. do everything yourself or did they believe in outsourcing. Oracle needs to look at both sorts of organisations. This question was designed to see the level of confidentiality of the Enterprise Resource Planning systems.

 

Analysis

The twenty-eight companies that used Enterprise Resource Planning systems responded to this question. Three of the companies did those themselves. The rest got it done through some other company. This showed that most of the companies wanted to concentrate on their core competencies and did not want to spend organisation’s resources on software development. The level of control on the designers of the software has to be high otherwise they will not deliver us the product we are looking for. However, it does not make much sense on carrying out this activity yourself and many companies believed in this.

The company here can see an advantage for itself. As companies are looking for outsiders to implement the Software solutions to their problems, Oracle can see whether it can present itself as the best company to come up with that job. The companies are looking for an ideal mix in which their needs are properly addressed and their resources are efficiently utilized. OraTech has to prove that it can do both the things at the same time and also implement them in such a way that it would be profitable for the company in question.

As the question has revealed a sort of reliance on other companies, this indicates a willingness to share information and consequently a great degree of trust and faith in the buyer-seller relationship. OraTech must realise this new trend and try to adapt its marketing mix in such a way that maximum value is derived by the customers of the company.

The three companies which do their Enterprise Resource Planning applications themselves are representative of that sample who either want to be confidential about their operations or have a well-developed Information System. Their priorities is to make their software package attuned to their needs only.

 

 

TABLE 2.2

 

Are the Enterprise Resource Planning Applications:
Designed by Your Organisation Some Other Company Does it for You
3(10%) 25(84.84%)

 

 

Chart 2.2

 

 

Q: Which company comes to your mind that implements Enterprise Resource Planning System in your Organisation?

‚ Cal Soft                   ‚ Cres Soft                 ‚ OraTech       ‚ Any Other ____________

 

Objective

This question brings us to the competitors of the company and its standing vis-a-vis its competitors. It was supposed to give us an idea of the market share of Oracle when it comes to the Enterprise Resource Planning systems. The idea of market share will give the company the idea that what should it do to retain its current position and hence its current market standing. We also wanted to investigate the belief whether Oracle is really the market leader in its field or not.

 

Analysis

The companies mentioned above are the current trendsetters in coming with software for organisations’ need as regards their resources. This question clearly demonstrated that Oracle is indeed the Market leader in the Enterprise Resource Planning sector of the market. The main products of Oracle are of course its database packages. However, their financial packages also have a remarkable reputation in the market. The company also handles asset management and other such organizational problem.

 

The other companies have specific target niches, which the customers tend to prefer in certain instances. For example, Harmony software designed for Human Resource and Personnel record maintenance is commonly used. Oracle does not have competing software for that category. The implications for Oracle in this regard are quite apparent. They have to look towards customisation and respond to the needs of a particular customer.

 

A high market share also entails market leader strategies. Their strategy in my view tends to be focus and so far it has been successful. However, with this success has come a sort of conservatism as our respondents believed. There is a certain resistance to change the current package of the product in question and there is a little willingness for the company to change their product line. The solution that we have proposed is continuos adaptation and responding to all customers needs individually.

 TABLE 2.3

Which company comes to your mind that implements Enterprise Resource Planning in Your Organization?

 

Cal Soft

2

Cres Soft

3

OraTech

20

Other _______

0

The above chart shows that about 20 companies that have implemented Enterprise Resource Planning systems from OraTech, 3 have got it done from CresSoft and 2 form Cal Soft.

CHART 2.3

 

This chart shows that Oracle does Enterprise Resource Planning for about 20 or 80% of the companies, two do it for Cal Soft and Calsoft has done the other three.

 

Q:  How do you rate the following features, of the applications customized or implemented by OraTech?

 

Objective

 

This Multiple Choice Question was designed to gauge the strengths and weaknesses of the systems implemented by OraTech. Eight attributes were selected in this question and an extra attribute was also added if the existing features were not being covered by the list given by us. We needed to get a feedback of OraTech customers regarding the Enterprise Resource Planning applications of OraTech. This question was designed to get exactly the same response the current management problem.

 

Analysis

This question reveals that the strong points of Oracle are its: System Administration Features, System Performance and User Interface. These entire three things prove one point that is that OraTech is selling a high quality product. Their high quality ensures that they may be able to retain their existing customers and hence can convert their high standards as their Unique Selling Proposition. However, the company scores low at Open Architecture and User friendliness hence their products are not easy to use. This means that operating their system is difficult.

 

 

TABLE 2.4THE COMPARATIVE RATING OF DIFFERENT FEATURES OF ORACLE ENTERPRISE RESOURCE PLANNING SYSTEMSRATINGS (Number of Respondents [Percentage])
FEATURES Excellent Good Normal Bad Worst
User Interface 4  (20) 10(50) 3(15) 3(15) 0(0)
System Performance 7(35) 6(30) 4 (20) 3 (15) 0(0)
Multi- User Access 3(15) 10(50) 4 (20) 0(0) 3(15)
Security Features 3(15) 13(65) 0(0) 0(0) 4(20)
System Administration Features 9(45) 7(35) 0(0) 0(0) 4(20)
System Integration 0(0) 13(65) 3(15) 4(20) 0(0)
Open Architecture 0(0) 4(20) 8(40) 8(40) 0(0)
User Friendliness 0(0) 12(60) 4(20) 4(20) 0(0)

TABLE 2.4

This table shows that how the Current users of OraTech rated the features of OraTech Enterprise Resource Planning systems in their organisations. The percentages of the respondents giving that answer in the parentheses

 

CHART 2.4

 

Chart 2.4. This chart shows the graphic illustration of the various attributes that have been rated by the Current number of users of Oracle covered by our research. In this graph we see that about Multi user Access and Security get unfavorable ratings whereas System Administration features and System Performance are the highest rated.

 

 

Q: To which extent are you satisfied with the Applications implemented by OraTech.

 

Objective

We are all well aware of the fact that all the needs of the customers have to be satisfied by the kind of products we offer because otherwise we may lose them to competition. This question was hence designed to gauge the level of satisfaction and contentment with the Oracle’s Enterprise Resource Planning systems. A high rate of satisfaction would have indicated a higher degree of loyalty and possibility of mutually profitable future relationships. We wanted to tell the company about the level of satisfaction of its customers.

 

Analysis

The customers are quite satisfied by the performance of OraTech as per the kind of service that is being provided to them by OraTech in this particular arena. There was no one who said that they were least satisfied had they been that they would have probably switched!

 

However, there were few people who were not happy with the kind of Enterprise Resource Planning package that was given to their company. Their disagreements were related to the lack of User friendliness and the closed architecture of Oracle’s product.

 

Here comes the dilemma for OraTech. How do they balance security considerations with user friendliness? And how do they ensure that system administration remains easy while its usage also easy? These are important questions that the company must look at.

 

TABLE 2.5

 

Level of Satisfaction Number of Respondents
1 (Least) 0 (0%)
2 2(10%)
3 2(10%)
4 13(65%)
5 (Most) 3(15%)

This table shows the level of satisfaction, which has been achieved by the Users of OraTech. They were asked to take an average of their responses to various attributes and asked to rate their level of satisfaction on a scale of 1-5. Three were most satisfied, 13 or 65% were somewhat satisfied and so on.

 

 

CHART 2.5

 

 

CHART 2.5: This chart shows 15 % of the Users of OraTech’s Enterprise Resource Planning systems are most satisfied by the system they have bought, 65% somewhat satisfied, 10% neutral and the rest 10% were somewhat unsatisfied.

SECTION C

Technical Support Services

 

 

Q: Are Technical Support services a part of the agreement you have with your vendor?

Objective

This dichotomous question was asked to see whether companies have a proviso of technical support from their vendors or not. This question was also designed to see whether the technical support is given enough importance or not. OraTech had a great interest in finding out that why were technical services being sought and what is the differentiating advantage of any company offering technical support services.

 

Analysis

The response to this question was 100% in the affirmative. Each company had some sort of agreement with its vendor. There were a few companies that had an indigenous technical support department with the same kind of responsibilities, as any normal company would have done.

 

This means that OraTech would have to concentrate on its support wherewithal because that will be sought by its customers. The advantages that the company will accrue through this process are:

  1. Bundled Pricing
  2. Relationships with Customers
  • Increased level of customisation for the customers

 

 

TABLE 3.1

 

Are Technical Support Services a part of the agreement you have with your vendor?
Yes 30
No 0

TABLE 3.1

This table shows that all 30 companies ask their vendor for technical services.

 

CHART 3.1

 

 
CHART 3.1: This shows that 100% of the Companies have an agreement with their vendor for provision of Technical Services.

 

Q:  Identify the company that provides you technical support services?

 

Objective

This question was again designed to get a fair idea of market share of OraTech vis-a-vis its competitor. The vendor has we have seen bound to give the technical support to its customers and hence it was mandatory for Oracle to live up to that commitment and produce something of tangible value to the customers.

 

Analysis

The response was overwhelmingly in favour of OraTech. Technical support was sought by all thirty companies, which we went to in relation to this survey.  As already mentioned the response rate for Oracle was high and we had to face a certain category, which we had not considered, the company itself!

About five companies did their technical work themselves. To attract these sort of customers should be a priority for OraTech. They believe in inward looking solutions and in strict confidence. This means that there has to be certain levels of consideration on part of OraTech too take care of its customers.

 

CHART 3.2

 

Companies Providing Technical Support Services

 

Identify the Company, which provides you with technical support services?
Cal Soft 2
Cres Soft 3
OraTech 20
Internal Department 5

TABLE 3.2

This table shows that 20 respondents used Technical Support Services of OraTech, 3 by CresSoft, 2 from CalSoft and 5 had their internal departments.

 

CHART 3.2

 

This chart shows the preferences by companies using the technical Support Services by OraTech. 66% used OraTech, 17% had their internal departments, 10% used Cres Soft and 7% used CalSoft

 

 

Q: How do you rate following attributes of technical support services provided to you by OraTech?

Objective

This question was designed to see how do the various attributes of OraTech’s technical support services provided by OraTech to its customers and whether the company is able to deliver customer satisfaction to its buyers. The rating attributes on a scale of 1 to 5 were given so that the customers could tell OraTech whether the attributes of their services are their strengths or weaknesses.

Analysis

The responses to this question revealed that OraTech did feature positively on the various attributes that we offered as a choice to the respondents. Response time and generation of a solution to a problem were the strengths. Cost was defined as a weakness and however, some companies had genuine complaints about the attitude of the technicians of the company in question. This means that the company has to remove its impression as a company, which offers good services but lacks the appropriate marketing expertise. In the era of relationship marketing sales man courtesy counts for a lot and its importance cannot be over emphasised. Some training

 

TABLE 3.3

RATING OF THE ATTRIBUTES OF ORATECH’S TECHNICAL SUPPORT SERVICES

RATINGS (Number of Respondents {Percentage})

WORST BAD NORMAL GOOD EXCELLENT
ATTITUDE 2(10%) 1(5%) 2(10%) 9(45%) 5(25%)
COST 0(0%) 3(15%) 15(75%) 2(10%) 0(0%)
RESPONSE TIME 0(0%) 3(15%) 4(20%) 8(40%) 5(25%)
SOLUTION 0(0%) 3(15%) 4(20%) 12(60%) 1(5%)

TABLE 3.3

This table shows the ratings given by the corresponding percentage of respondents giving that response to the answer in question.

 

 

CHART 3.3

Rating of Various Attributes of OraTech’s Technical Support Services

 

 

This chart shows the percentage of respondents rating the attributes of the Technical Support Services as provide by OraTech to its customers. This graph shows that Solution to Problem and Response Time is the highest rated attributes. Cost is quite high in the view of the respondents and Attitude has drawn a mixed response.

 

 

Q: To what extent are you satisfied by the Technical Support Services provided to you by OraTech?

Objective

This multiple choice questions was asked by us to see that whether the customers of OraTech are satisfied by the level of service provided to them by the company. This is to gauge whether the high market share is sustainable or not. The loyalty of customers is to be determined by this question.

Analysis

The respondents revealed that they were quite satisfied by the level of service provided to them by OraTech. However, there were certain respondents who complained about the high prices and there were two cases of serious anger at the attitude of the sales people and the lack of follow up. This should be cause of great concern for OraTech and the company must seriously look to get rid of this impression.

 

TABLE 3.4

This table shows the level o satisfaction with OraTech’s technical services

Level of Satisfaction (1=Least,2=Most) Number Of Respondents (Percentage)
1 1(5%)
2 2(10%)
3 8(40%)
4 7(35%)
5 2(10%)

 

This table shows that about 10% are most satisfied, 35% somewhat satisfied 40% are neutral and the rest are dissatisfied by the Technical Services provided by OraTech.

 

 

CHART 3.4


This chart shows the level of satisfaction of the OraTech’s Technical Services. 1 shows dissatisfaction and 5 shows extreme satisfaction. The Chart shows that about 50% are on the higher scale of satisfaction and about 15% are not satisfied.

 

 

HYPOTHESES TESTING

 

Ho: At least 75% of the organizations use Oracle as the Database Management System.

 

Ho: p  £ 0.75

Ha: p > 0.75

 

Confidence Interval: 95%

a = 0.05

Z-Score                   : 1.64

 

Estimated Standard Error:

 

σp= √¯p(1 – p) / (n – 1)

= √¯0.75(1 – 0.75) / (30 – 1)

= 0.080

 

Critical Value = 0.75 + (-1.64) 0.080

= 0.62

 

Observed Value = 0.67

 

Since the Observed Value is greater than the critical value, we do not accept the null hypotheses and conclude that less than 75 % of the users use Oracle as the database used in their respective organizations. Only 67% of the users use Oracle in their databases that makes it use the largest among the database applications used, but not 75%. That is, we cannot say with a .05 confidence level, that the users use Oracle as the leading database management application in their respective organizations.

 

Probability Determination

 

z = l P – p l / σp

 

where; P = 0.75, p = 83 / 200 = 0.67,

z = 0.75– 0.67 / 0.08 = 1

z = 1.00 ≃ 16 % (from z – score table)

A z – value of 1.00 cuts off about 16 % of the tail of the distribution. Thus, given our sample of 20, we would obtain by chance, a sample proportion of 0.67or larger if the actual population was 0.75 about 16 % of the time.

HYPOTHESIS II

 

Ho: At least 85% of the organizations use OraTech to implement their Enterprise Resource Planing System

 

Ho: p ≤ 0.85

Ha: p > 0.85

Confidence Interval: 0.05 @ 95%

Z-Score                     : 1.64

 

Estimated Standard Error:

 

σp= √¯p(1 – p) / (n – 1)

= √¯0.85(1 – 0.85) / (30 – 1)

= 0.0663

 

Critical Value = 0.85 + (-1.64) 0.0663

= 0.741

 

Observed Value = 0.75

 

Since the Observed Value lies outside the Critical Value Range, the Null Hypothesis is Not Accepted. That is, the management cannot, with a 0.05 confidence level, conclude that consumers use the Enterprise Resource Application Systems Implemented by Ora Tech.

Probability Determination

z = l P – p l / σp

 

where; P = 0.85,  p = .75

z = 0.85 – 0.75 / 0.0663

z = 1.5 ≃ 11.23 % (from z – score table)

A z – value of 1.5 cuts off about 11.23% of the tail of the distribution; Thus, given our sample of 30, we would obtain by chance, a sample proportion of 0.306 or larger if the actual population were 0.85 about 11.23% of the time.

 

 

HYPOTHESIS III

 

Ho: A least 85% of the organizations use technical support services provided by OraTech

 

Ho: p ≤ 0.85

Ha: p > 0.85

 

Confidence Interval: 0.05 @ 95%

Z-Score                     : 1.64

 

Estimated Standard Error:

σp= √¯p(1 – p) / (n – 1)

= √¯0.85(1 – 0.85) / (30 – 1)

= 0.0663

Critical Value = 0.85 + (-1.64) 0.0663

= 0.741

 

Observed Value = 0.78

 

Since the Observed Value lies outside the Critical Value Range,  the Null Hypothesis is Not Accepted. That is, the management cannot, with a 0.05 confidence level, conclude that consumers use the Enterprise Resource Application Systems Implemented by Ora Tech.

 

 

Probability Determination

z = l P – p l / σp

 

where; P = 0.85,  p = .75

z = 0.85 – 0.75 / 0.0663

z = 1.5 ≃ 11.23 % (from z – score table)

A z – value of 1.5 cuts off about 11.23% of the tail of the distribution; Thus, given our sample of 30, we would obtain by chance, a sample proportion of 0.306 or larger if the actual population were 0.85 about 11.23% of the time.

Conclusions and Recommendations for Ora Tech

 

The recommendations that we have given to the Management after the analysis are as follows:

 

  • OraTech should keep a profile of soft ware and hard ware configurations of its customers

 

  • OraTech should visit client installations more frequently

 

  • Technical support team should have knowledge about different platforms

 

  • OraTech should contact the clients regularly

 

  • Ora Tech should expand its’ existing Enterprise Resource Planning Systems applications being offered and should enter new areas like Inventory Management and Export Order Systems.

 

  • Ignition of an Intensive Training program for Sales and Technical support Personnel and improve the attitude of the sales personnel.

 

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