(11 pages of text)
In 2006, Mudra Communications, the third-largest advertising agency in India, is in the middle of an organizational transformation in which information technology (IT) is seen by the top management as pivotal. The IT setup is undergoing a transition at Mudra from manual systems to an Enterprise System (ES) which has been developed internally by the eight-member IT team led by executive vice president for technology Sebastian Joseph. As he gets ready to implement the first module of ES, known as Mudra Business Operations Support System (mBoss), covering 70 per cent of the activities of the agency, Joseph is facing some managerial dilemmas related to planning the roll-out, training the end users, and managing the change that the new system will bring to the agency. He is also facing choices between outsourcing the ES architecture or owning it, and between outsourcing the development of the remaining seven modules or developing them internally, as before.
The case provides an opportunity for students to discuss issues related to putting systems in place in the context of an advertising agency, which is usually not known for the rigour of internal processes, unlike a manufacturing or even a service enterprise. It raises four larger questions for class discussion: How should Joseph measure the return on investment on IT? How should he unlock the value of ES once it is fully in place at Mudra? How should he align business needs with IT needs? How should he manage the expectation of IT as an enabler of organizational transformation and the scepticism of end users, brought up for years on manual systems, towards automated systems?
Information, Media & Telecommunications
India, Large, 2010
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