Uses of ICT in a company - Sample Essay

1) Terms of Reference This report has been written by Jack Michaels at the request of John Gaulding and it is to be written about St Georges and the uses of ICT in the company. 2) Procedure The report will look at the systems, software and hardware used by St Georges to successfully run a business, and the information which I will be using has been supplied to me by Mr John Gaulding from St Georges and also the St Georges website 3) Introduction This report will show the way that St Georges run and maintain a lucrative and successful business. St Georges has several branches and is a business of 50 staff strong 3. 1) Aims and Objectives.

St Georges obviously aim to give the highest possible care and treatment to the animals they treat as they can. There other main object is to make a large profit, so they can keep treating the animals, and keep expanding their business. They also aim to sell high quality products and have good customer relations. In order to do this they need to employ the right staff and have a good range of high quality equipment. 3. 2) Core Business All of the St Georges clinics contain the only veterinary hospital in the Midlands. Containing full medical, surgical, anesthetic and hospital facilities that have a 24 hour emergency service.

The hospital also has separate wards for dogs, cats and rabbits as well as caring for various pets and animals. These facilities is what give St Georges an advantage over the rest of the market and its competitors 4) ICT Systems used St Georges use many different software programs and hardware, in all of their branches and also by on call vets and nurses. Probably the most important systems used by St Georges are SAGE and bespoke. SAGE is a financial program designed to track and analyse a company’s performance and to make sure that the company is sticking to budgets and is going to meet projected profits.

Bespoke is a very important veterinary program. All of an animal’s personal and medical information would be stored in this and more importantly it works as a diagnostic program, where if a vet enters the animal’s information and problem, it would recommend what treatment to be carried out or what medicine to be prescribed and what dosage of medicine, this can be very useful to on call Vets, as this program is on their Laptops they can make a full diagnostic on site, which may be vital in the case of an emergency 5) Table of contents Input devices Output devices processors.

Ports and cables Storage and devices Software applications Keyboards Visual display unit POS 5000 Pentium III 2GHz 3 serial ports Microsoft Word Touch screen monitor 15″ flat screen monitor AMD Athlon 1. 6 GHz Microsoft Access Mouse Flat screen monitors One parallel interface port PDA device Microsoft Word Barcode reader Epson printer Printer ports 128MB memory stick Microsoft Power point 6) Components used by St Georges 6. 1) Input Devices  Mouse – Connected to every computer in St Georges, and to some laptops (user preference), used to navigate around the computer.

Keyboard – Connected to every computer, and built in with all laptops, used to input data 6. 2) Output Devices Monitors (flat screen) – Connect to each computer, and are built in on laptops, used to display data, and flat screen monitors are used as they take up less room and are also more user friendly (emitting less radiation then tradition CRT monitors)  Printer – High speed printer used to quickly print out invoices and other documents. St Georges use either laser printers or colour printers depending on the nature of the document bring printed 6. 3) Processors (CPU).

A processor or CPU (central processing unit) is a device that is built into any computer system (e. g. desktop computers, laptops, PDA) which interprets commands and processes data. There are many different brands of processor (AMD and Pentium generally being the two biggest), St Georges normally use Pentium Celeron 2Ghz processors, which are more cost efficient then other models, but not as powerful (processing data slower, meaning the computer takes longer to react to commands), however the also use Pentium 3 2. 6Ghz processors, which are more powerful but also more expensive. They have one computer with a Pentium 4 3.

6 GHz processor, as this is the main storage computer, which is used a lot for demanding tasks so requires a powerful processor. 6. 4) Ports and Cables Cables connect input and output devices to a computer or laptop, via a port, usually at the back of computer, but sometimes also at the front of the computer, or the side of a laptop. 6. 5) Ports Ports are attached to a computers mother board, which is the main circuit board in a computer connecting everything together * Universal Serial Bus (USB) – This is the most used port in the world with over 1 billion USB devices in the world in 2004, with many more now as new goods are released.

All devices can be attached via USB except displays and monitors and high quality digital video components as they require a higher data rate then USB can give. USB’s are easily and quickly connected, without having to restart a computer to use them, which is good in a business environment where time is important. They are also faster then serial or parallel ports. USB is the most used port by St Georges with most devices being linked via USB  Parallel Ports – This is a data transfer connection where data is transferred in parallel, on more then one wire.

Parallel ports are traditionally used mainly with printers, however USB has taken this place with most new printers because of superior speed and efficiency, however many older printers still use parallel ports, for, much like the reason of St Georges, cost saving * Serial Ports – Serial ports are more basic then either parallel ports or USB ports as it has a much slower transfer rate. St Georges used to use serial ports to connect modems however St Georges now use a DSL modem, as they have broadband internet which is not compatible with traditional modems, and DSL uses USB ports and not serial ports.

FireWire – Like USB ports, FireWire has high speed data transfer, however is not as commonly used at USB. St Georges only use FireWire for one device, a digital video recorder, and only one of their computers have a FireWire connection 6. 6) Cables St Georges use cables to connect basically every input and output device. They use USB most frequently as it offers the fastest data transfer rate and most products are now being made only with USB connections Storage Devices 7. 7) Primary storage – RAM RAM (random access memory) stores files and allows them to be accessed in any order (random) and not just in a sequence.

The longer that your computer is being used for the more full the RAM will get and the slower it will be, RAM is not accessible when the computer is turned off. St Georges use 512mb of RAM in all of their computers, and laptops, except for the main storage computer which has 1024nb, as this has a more powerful processor and is used for more demanding tasks thus needs a larger RAM. 7. 8) Secondary Storage There are many forms of secondary storage; they are generally slower then primary storage, however usually have a much larger memory captivity. Here are some forms of secondary storage.

Floppy Disk is a basic storage product. A normal floppy disk will generally only store 1. 44mb or 2. 88mb of data. The floppy disk is rarely used now, with floppy disk drives normally not as standard any more with new computers, as it now outdated, with many people opting for USB storage devices. Hard Drives are in most electrical items that store data e. g. computers, laptops, mp3 players, Xbox 360 any many more. Hard drives are the main storage device on computers, with storage captivity in modern computers ranging from 40 GB to 1 TB (1000 GB).

Hard drives are internal however external hard drives are available for extra storage  Flash memory is a rewritable form of storage that is used in memory card, USB flash and mp3 players USB flash memory is a storage device that can store up to 4GB of data. It plugs into the USB port and has high speed data transfer St Georges use many secondary storage devices; most commonly they use USB flash memory sticks to easily and efficiently transfer data from a computer to another computer, laptop/computer to laptop/computer and from work to home and home to work.

Every employee at St Georges has a 512MB USB stick. St Georges also have a hard drive in every computer and laptop to store files and data. The laptops have a 40GB internal hard drive and the computers have a 60GB internal hard drive except for the main computer which has a 100 GB hard drive. St Georges use flash memory in Scandisk memory cards, which they use in digital cameras and recorders. 7) Software Applications 7. 1) Microsoft Word Word is the most commonly used word processing program due to its efficiency, easiness of use and functionality and features.

St Georges use word for many tasks such as creating letters (can create letters to multiple people when using mail merge, which is using word in conjunction with databases to add different customer information with a click of a button) flyers, notices and more. 7. 2) Microsoft Excel Excel is a spreadsheet program that St Georges use for a number of tasks. They create complex spreadsheets about customer information, finance, animal information etc, they also use excel to create graphs for a whole range of subjects for visual representation. 7. 3) Microsoft Access.

Access is a database program that St Georges use to create very in-depth data bases on a number of things. All customer and their animals details are stored on databases and can be linked to excel. They also use access to link to word to use the mail merge program. They also create and store supplier and product details on access databases 7. 3) Sage The sage program is used for the financial side of St Georges. The program has various different functions and uses that will give financial details, figures and data automatically without having to spend time finding and using formulas. 7.

4) Bespoke System St Georges use bespoke software to contain and hold all of the data on clients and their appointments. The software is on all computers and laptops in the chain. It automatically updates customer appointments when they are needed, e. g. regular checkups. 8) How the components are linked The components that St Georges use are very well and successfully linked together, which helps the business in its success. With customer, animal, product and supplier information being stored on databases, it can be easily linked to word and excel so letters, invoices etc can be easily made.

When a customer makes an appointment, the receptionist will enter it on the bespoke system, which will then alert the vets of all their upcoming appointments. 9) Conclusion After looking individually at all of the different aspects of ICT and technology used at St Georges you can see it is complicated but when you look it all as part of one interlinked system, it is very complicated. Like a complex machine missing a single cog, with just one system/program missing from their setup, they would not be able to work to their current high standards and probably not be able to work very well at all.

Without the ICT St Georges have, they would have to do everything manually with pen and paper, store customer information, find calculations, write letters, create invoices, basically everything you can think of, which would cost vast amounts of time, which in turn costs money and money itself on goods such as paper, pens, folders etc, which would most probably total up to more then the cost of a basic computer system. This report shows us just how important the use of ICT is in a business environment, and how much impact it has.