Technology, in the past century has taken an explosive leap into society as a whole, engulfing our lives and organisations. Such technologies as machines for assembly lines, computers and of course just recently high speed internet connections. This introduction of new technologies has severely impacted organisations, which has caused managers to adapt accordingly. In doing so they are following a very innovative trend which may, in turn, put them in a spot of competitive advantage. This issue has been quite controversial in many organisations over recent years.
Numerous organisations have struggled with the introduction of machines to replace employees, for example one such organisation is Woolworths Pty Ltd. Woolworths organisation has captured the essence of the technological era and in doing so has introduced a wide variety of innovative devices into most of its stores. For instance, over the past few decades communication approaches has developed rapidly which enables the organisation to strengthen its relationships with suppliers, customers and internal managers.
Examples of new technology in the way of communication are the internet with high speed connections (Skype and Polycom for video conferencing), e-mail, and websites such as Amazon or Ebay for purchasing (this creates time as managers do not need to leave the office in order to purchase supplies). These are all examples of a positive impact that the introduction of new technologies has had on many organisations. I speak purely from experience when I say that the introduction of new technologies has had a major impact on the Woolworths organisation and its employees.
There are many positive aspects that come into play here, for instance the insertion of four (4) new ‘self-serve’ check-outs at the Echuca Woolworths store. This approach by management has created more efficiency and effectiveness in the way of customers paying for their groceries. This increases the productivity rate per hour of service and therefore increases company revenue. Also for every four (4) ‘self-serve’ check-out machines, one (1) employee is rostered on the monitor them. Hence this increases revenue even further due to the fact that the company now only has to employ ne (1) person instead of four (4) per shift. However, this innovation has had mostly a negative effect on me and many other staff. Shifts, including mine, have been cut back to only one (1) or two (2) a week, whereas before the machines were operational, I was working six (6) shifts a week. In that sense I lost most of my weekly income. Two (2) months after my shifts being cut back, I was made redundant. Therefore I had no source of income due to the newly installed machines. This is a clear example of when introduction of technology has had a major effect on me and effectively the economy.
Another valid disadvantage of having these machines in Woolworths is the unnecessary added stress on the customers. These machines have only been in most (if not all) stores for only under 18 months and majority of people still do not know or are unsure of how to operate them. This creates the issue of in-efficiency which is time consuming to recover from. Additionally, this disrupts my workload if the customers needs assistance to operate the machine. Woolworths is taking these disadvantages into consideration and trying to rectify any present or future problems within the company.
In conclusion, technology has had a great impact on many organisations within its short existence, creating both positive and negative advances in the way of communication and efficiency. Organisations such as Woolworths, Bunnings and the National Australia Bank have strived to take advantage of this innovative trend and create many new avenues for future success. For me personally, these technological changes have had a negative effect, however in terms of the organisations’ goal to increase revenue and improve customer relationships it has been a positive influence.