Information Systems in the Consumer Industry

A customer approach


This work is addressed to everyone who asks himself what will be, in the near future, the information needs for the consumer industry. This paper is thus addressed to people working in information technology, marketing, organization or general management. Their interest will be over the whole book and, particularly, in the chapters regarding the general objective and solutions architecture for the industry and retail environment.

This works derives from various personal experiences out of which I chose the two real cases which are presented in the initial chapters: in both cases the real problem was to shift the company information focus from the support of internal processes to the analysis and evaluation of the market scenario in which the companies were acting.

One of the problems I had to cope while doing this job is to be sure to use a methodology which would help me taking into consideration every part of the problem, not forgetting any aspect.

The method is one of the aims of the book.

From a presentation point of view, I decided to start from the real cases and then get to the abstraction, not vice versa; it seems to me easier to understand. This is the reason why the case studies are quoted initially; they should help the reader to face the more “formal” discussions with an operational attitude, not as just “principia”.

Generally I think that, after the pure automation phase (accounting, MRP etc.), information technology will need to help industries to approach the complete cycle of customer needs. This will mean taking into consideration processes with a very little syntactic content but very common: informational unstructured scenarios. I think that these processes are the one that will give us some better prediction information models and also improve our operational and control tools.

I am sure that his work has plenty of ingenuities, methodological and language mistakes but, as I found no literature on these topics, I decided to use it as a request for help so that we can make a better service to our general “customer”.