After completion of the course, you can (1) explain the role and importance of information and communication technologies for supporting internal and external organizational processes, and (2) explain what (technological) innovation is, how organizations organize the innovation process, and what factors determine a successful adoption of technological innovations.
Specific learning objectives
After completion of the course, you are able to...
- define, describe and apply what an organization is and what characteristics organizations have;
- describe what information technologies and systems are, and explain their importance for supporting various organizational processes;
- can analyze the interplay between different organizational processes and characteristics of IT;
- are acquainted with the most important information technologies and current developments in information technology, specifically newer social media technologies;
- define and explain the technological innovation process and analyze how technological innovations may affect organizations;
- can advise on organization on how to best use IT and social media innovations to achieve business goals;
- design a basic database and you are able to store, retrieve, and process data in a database.
Business Information Technology (BIT) is the introductory course on the role of new information technologies in organizations. If you enter the job market with a Master of Science in Communication and Information Sciences, you will be employed in an organization that heavily depends on information and communication technologies to conduct its business. For example, you could end up working as a marketer, a social media analyst, a or a communications officer, all of which require extensive use of IT in their work such as customer relationship management systems, groupware or social/web analytics apps. BIT will help you to make informed decisions on the use and effects of IT in organizations, such as IT acquisition, implementation, development and diffusion. To that end, the course focuses on (1) the role of information technologies (IT) in supporting organizational processes (i.e., IT in businesses) and (2) the way that trends in innovative information technologies affect organizational development (IT as a business).|
The first part of the course focuses on the role of IT in supporting organizational processes. Virtually all organizations depend on IT for the support of internal and external business processes. For example, you can think of the simple office programs that employees use, such as Word and Excel. Most organizations also use additional, and more advanced IT systems, however, such as enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems, customer relations management systems, or eBusiness systems. Using IT in the organization is no guarantee to success, however: many organizations are struggling to successfully use and implement these technologies. IT never works as expected and organizations often do not know how to effectively implement it. The goal of this part of the course is that you understand the interplay between organizational processes and characteristics of information and information technologies, and that this understanding will enable you to make better informed decisions about the adoption and implementation of IT in your (future) organization.
The second part of the course, then, focuses on trends and innovations in IT that affect the ways that organizations function. We discuss the virtualization of organizations, how organizations manage the increasing knowledge and information rich environment they live in, and the social media applications that support their processes, such as corporate social networking sites, and mobile media applications. These and other innovations may affect he ways that organizations do business and may even transform what constitutes an organization. There are many examples of IT trends completely disrupting organizations and even entire sectors. For example, consider the music industry, where innovations in IT have completely changed the way we listen to music, or how smartwatches may affect our healthcare system, or how big data and social media analytics change marketing and customer interactions. Therefore, organizations need to learn how to identify these innovations and how they will affect their business. Moreover, if you have plans to become an entrepreneur yourself and want to develop a successful, novel IT product or service, you need to understand technological innovation, the innovation process, and what factors contribute to the ‘make or break’ of an innovation. Therefore, in this part of the course we will consider the factors that make IT innovation a success and new business models associated with IT innovation.
The course grade is based on your results for a written exam (60% of final grade), a group assignment (40% of final grade), and a database assignment (graded with pass/fail).
For the group assignments, your group will write a business plan (in English). In the business plan, you will develop an innovative IT or social media related product or service and the organization around it. You start with explaining the innovation in detail (the innovation itself does not yet have to exist, but has to be feasible in the near future). You also design the organization around it including a description of its processes and IT use. Finally, you explain how and why the innovation will be a success. A detailed overview of the assignment instructions for the business plan will be posted on Canvas. The business plan counts for 40% of the final grade. For the database assignment, you design a database and you learn how to store, process, and retrieve data in the database.
NB. The course is taught in English. All course material is in English as to assist the English curriculum line. This includes the lecture slides, course manual, literature, and the exam.
|Course available for exchange students|
|Conditions of admission apply||Required materials|
|Boddy, B., Boonstra, A. & Kennedy, G., Managing Information Systems; Strategy and Organisation (3rd ed.), Harlow, UK: Prentice Hall, 2008.|
|List of literature|
|Selected articles and chapters that will be announced through Canvas.|
|Database assignment pass/fail|