Management Information Systems for Book Retailers
MIS for Competing with Major Book Retailers
A management information system for the automation of inventory management, requiring customer order fulfillment, receiving processes, invoice generation, and having Web-based self-services would help the business compete with major book retailers because all of the business activities would take place faster, which is a competitive advantage in itself. For example, a management information system for inventory management, which is also sometimes called "book inventory software," keeps books in record in the form of barcodes. These barcodes are called International Standard Book Number (ISBN).
It becomes easier for the book retailer to identify those book and their various versions so that inventory handling is simplified. Moreover, there is another very useful software that helps the book retailers keep a record of the sales, which is called "Point of Sale" software. This assists the book retailers to keep evidence of the sales made each day and at the end of the month, it would be no hassle in calculating the total number of sales or the profits earned. For future assistance, this software can also show records six or twelve months old. The basic functions of these two software also include provision of online inventory, record keeping of ISBN and ISSN, availability to the customers for online buying, benefits of promotional pricing, formulating customer loyalty programs, maintenance of the books that become outdated, search functions that would generate results when the customer types in any keywords, or if the book retailer wants to sell through mediums like Amazon then the software can provide this function too (Guinn, 2015). The most beneficial feature of these software is that they can be accessed via any device such as smartphones, computers, laptop or tablets. The only requirement is the internet.
All of the features of the two software would help Margaret's business to compete with the major book retailers. As mentioned in the case, she has a coffee and bookshop, she can use these MIS to keep track of the sales for the coffee as well. It would give an advantage to know when the ingredients for the coffee are going out of stock. For example, the MIS can indicate her before the sugar jar empties or the milk is not there. So, it would become easier for her to not only use MIS for book retailing but also for stock keeping and inventory handling for the coffee business. This would be a breakthrough for her business and a competitive edge over the rivals. How MIS is Helping Competitors to Lower Costs and Improve EfficiencyAs mentioned in the case that Margaret used to handle all the bookstore activities manually that caused a number of errors along with wastage of time. There were stock-outs, payment inaccuracies, lateness in supply orders and obsolete books in the inventory. If a business is carried out with mismanagement, then there would be no surprise that competitors would take over the book retail market. In today's information age, …