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Riordan Manufacturing – Hardware and Software Introduction One of the top priorities at Riordan and many other businesses is guarding against loss, theft, and waste of the company assets. According to Bagranoff, Simkin & Strand protecting these assets means an organization must focus on developing and implementing an internal control system. Further, the internal control system must also be capable of performing other functions like assisting in ensuring data processing is dependable and encouraging operational efficiency within the business (2008, p.
40). This paper will initially identify the hardware and software necessary to integrate the conversion cycle into an automated system at Riordan. Then, the information that needs to be shared between the different cycles and who will need access to this information will be discussed. Next, what controls need to be in place and the types of reports that need to be generated will be examined.
Lastly, what information should be available through Internet and corporate intranet will be discussed. Hardware and Software Necessary
The essential key to the integration of the conversion cycle is an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) System. ERP is a way to integrate the data and processes of an organization into a single system. Usually ERP systems will have many components including hardware and software, in order to achieve integration, however, most ERP systems use a unified database to store data for various functions found throughout the organization (techfaq, 2008).
Today’s ERP systems can cover a wide range of functions and integrate these functions into one unified database.
For instance, functions such as human resources, supply chain management, customer relations management, financials, manufacturing functions and warehouse management functions were all once stand alone software applications. These functions were usually housed with their own database and network. Today, they can all fit under one umbrella – the ERP system (techfaq, 2008). Shared Information The information that needs to be shared between departments at Riordan Manufacturing is purchase orders, invoices, work orders, customer orders and customer billing.
Many different departments of Riordan will need access to various levels of the new system. For example, the research and marketing supervisor will need access to the system to confirm what supplies production has on hand and what supplies still need to be obtained. The product department supervisor needs access to the system to keep oversee labor, supplies, budget and deliveries. The workers in production need system access to input supplies used, output produced and quantity of hours spent on producing a product.
The billing department needs system access to charge costs to the proper department. The President, CEO, COO, and CFO need system access to view the entire system, from month end reports down to payment reports (Moss and Stine, 1993). Although, normally there is no requirement for upper and middle level management to examine the lower level reports, questions periodically arise from the monthly and annual reports that require investigation. During these occurrences management will use date gathered from various sources like inventory and labor reports. Controls
To integrate the accounts receivable process into an automated system for Riordan Manufacturing, management needs to reduce the likelihood of risks happening in the future. To reduce the risk, management should identify possible events that represent a problem to the firm then determine the appropriate internal controls to implement to deter those problems from occurring (Dunn, Cherrington & Hollander, 2004). “Internal control describes the policies, plans, and procedures implemented by a firm to protect its assets” (Bagranoff, Simkin & Strand, 2008, p. 40). Three types of controls that need to be operational for the business to reduce risk and function optimally are preventive controls, detective controls, and corrective controls. Preventative controls are the initial level of protection an organization implements to discourage problems from occurring. At this level risked are analyzed and solutions are implemented to prevent problems. When the preventive control has failed a detective control is implemented. This control is designed to uncover an undesired problem that has transpired (Dunn, et al, 2004).
The third control is the corrective control, which is designed to restore a system to an approved or last known good state. A company usually establishes corrective controls to remedy problems that are discovered by the detective controls. One advisable procedure that can be implemented for this control is establishing training programs that educate employees about how to use the new automated system that can help them perform their job functions more efficiently and effectively.
It is imperative to understand that for the integration, any control strategy has to be tailored to address the risks to objectives that management identifies as unacceptable. The objective should be detecting risks that are materially threatening the goals of the organization and reducing them to the point that management is more willing to accept. Generated Reports The reports that need to be generated in an automated system are customer orders, purchase requisitions, labor requests, and general reports.
Customer orders dictate what items are manufactured and what quantities need to be supplied in a specified time frame (Dunn, et al, 2004). At Riordan, purchase requisitions are important because they exhibit the materials that need to be purchased to manufacture customer orders. Labor requests are used to dictate the number of employees needed for each job order as well as the timeframe the job will occur. General reports are used to inform management and other supervisors of the results of inventory expended and labor used to accomplish a job. Internet and Intranet
Riordan will have some reports available on the Internet for stockholders and outside interests to access. These reports will include quarterly and annual reports that will be uploaded after being approved by the CFO. This will allow research into the financial standings of Riordan in order to show the financial stability of the company and the strength of the stock holdings. There will also be a corporate intranet available to all internal interests. Most reports will be available on this system in order to keep satellite locations aware of financial decisions and information.
The IT department will give different access to the various levels of the company through the use of password protection. As described in the access section above, not all levels will need to view all reports. Conclusion By making one of the top priorities at Riordan guarding against loss, theft, and waste of the company assets, the company enjoys the success in business. Riordan accomplishes this task by focusing on developing and implementing an internal control system that is capable of performing other functions like assisting in ensuring data processing is dependable and encouraging operational efficiency within the business.
This paper initially identified the hardware and software necessary to integrate the conversion cycle into an automated system at Riordan. Then, the information that needs to be shared between the different cycles and who will need access to this information was discussed. Next, what controls need to be in place and the types of reports that need to be generated were examined. Lastly, what information should be available through Internet and corporate intranet was discussed. Reference Bagranoff, N. A. , Simkin, M.
G. , & Strand, C.. Core Concepts of Accounting Information Systems (10th ed. ) Wiley, 2008 New York, NY Dunn C. L. , Cherrington J. O. , Hollander A. S. (2004). Enterprise Information Systems: A Pattern- Based Approach, 3e. The McGraw-Hill Companies, copyright 2004. Moss, Jimmy D. , and Bert Stine. “Cash Conversion Cycle and Firm Size: A Study of Retail Firms. ” Managerial Finance. December 1993 Techfaq. (2008). What is ERP? Retrieved August 15, 2008, from techFaq Web site: http://www. tech-faq. com/erp. shtml