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Grafton College, Islamabad Campus

Unit 3
Employability and Professional
Development

Chosen Organisation

Submitted by:

AMNA ASAD
(Reg. # GCPK 1018)

Submitted to:

Ms. Maria Shahid


Grafton, Islamabad

Contents
LO 1 ........................................................................................................................................... 6
TASK 1 ...................................................................................................................................... 6
Introduction ................................................................................................................................ 6
About Company ......................................................................................................................... 6
Companys Mission ................................................................................................................ 6
Department of User Interface (UI) .............................................................................................. 6
Hiring Procedure ........................................................................................................................ 7
Job Description .......................................................................................................................... 7

Job description for this position .................................................................................... 7

Nature of Work............................................................................................................. 7

Suitable Profile for this Program................................................................................... 7

Skills required for this position ..................................................................................... 7

Organisational Objectives .......................................................................................................... 8


Curriculum Vitae ........................................................................................................................ 9
ACM Professional Standards ....................................................................................................10
BCS CODE OF CONDUCT.......................................................................................................10
1. Public Interest....................................................................................................................10
2. Professional Competence and Integrity .............................................................................10
3. Duty to Relevant Authority .................................................................................................11
4. Duty to the Profession .......................................................................................................11
Comparison with BCS/ACM Professional Standards .............................................................11
SWOT Analysis: ....................................................................................................................12
Strengths: ..........................................................................................................................12
Weaknesses: .....................................................................................................................12
Opportunities: ....................................................................................................................12
Threats: .............................................................................................................................12
Maslow Need Hierarchy Theory.............................................................................................13
Physiological Needs ...........................................................................................................13
Safety ................................................................................................................................13
Social Needs ......................................................................................................................14
Esteem ..............................................................................................................................14
Self-Actualization ...............................................................................................................14
Personal Analysis ..............................................................................................................14
Skills Audit .............................................................................................................................15

Why I have used these tools? ................................................................................................20


Conclusion ............................................................................................................................20
TASK 2 .....................................................................................................................................21
Evaluating Developmental Needs .............................................................................................21
TASK 3 .....................................................................................................................................22
Development Plan .....................................................................................................................22
Why should I plan? ................................................................................................................22
Development Plan .................................................................................................................22
Time Table ................................................................................................................................23
TASK 4 .....................................................................................................................................24
Development progress ..........................................................................................................24
LO 3 Task 1 ..............................................................................................................................25
Team work/Team Dynamics ..................................................................................................25
Belbins Team Roles..............................................................................................................25
Team Development and Managing work within a team ..........................................................26
Forming .............................................................................................................................27
Storming ............................................................................................................................27
Norming .............................................................................................................................27
Performing .........................................................................................................................27
Task 2 .......................................................................................................................................28
Different Types of Teams ......................................................................................................28
Problem-solving Teams .....................................................................................................28
Self-managed Teams .........................................................................................................28
Cross-functional Teams .....................................................................................................28
Virtual Teams .....................................................................................................................28
Team Management Software ................................................................................................28
LO4 ...........................................................................................................................................29
Problem Solving ....................................................................................................................29
Seven steps of Problem Solving ............................................................................................29
Problem Solving Tools/Methods ............................................................................................30
Brain storming ....................................................................................................................30
Affinity diagram ..................................................................................................................30
Nominal group technique ...................................................................................................30
Pareto Chart ......................................................................................................................30
Flowcharting ......................................................................................................................30
What is the problem?.............................................................................................................31

What is Business Information System?..................................................................................31


Which system development approach will be used? ..............................................................31
Phases of SDLC ....................................................................................................................32
4 direct stages ...................................................................................................................32
2 indirect stages .................................................................................................................32
Procedure..............................................................................................................................33
Project Planning or Feasibility study...................................................................................33
Analysis Phase ..................................................................................................................33
Design Phase ....................................................................................................................33
Coding ...............................................................................................................................33
Testing ...............................................................................................................................33
Implementation and Maintenance ......................................................................................33
SDLC approaches/ methodologies ........................................................................................34
Waterfall ............................................................................................................................34
Spiral .................................................................................................................................35
Incremental/Iterative ..........................................................................................................35
Rapid Application Development (RAD) ..............................................................................36
Which System Development Approach is best? ....................................................................36
Business Information System for Retail Store ........................................................................37
Point of Sale Software ...........................................................................................................37
Features ............................................................................................................................37
POS Screen .......................................................................................................................38
The Client Database ..........................................................................................................38
Inventory Control / Purchase Orders ..................................................................................39
Security Features ...............................................................................................................40
Benefits of Business Information System...............................................................................41
Resources.................................................................................................................................42
Websites ...............................................................................................................................42
Books ....................................................................................................................................42
Others ...................................................................................................................................42

LO 1
TASK 1

Introduction
Every person requires skills for general employment such as interpersonal and
transferable skills, and dynamics of working with others in teams or groups including leadership
and communication skills.
Employability and professional development also deals with the everyday working
requirement of problem solving which includes the identification or specification of problem,
strategies for its solution and then evaluation of the results of the solution through reflective
practices.
I have chosen Axact as my organisation. It is my wish to work in this company and
known as Axactian.

About Company
Axact is a mission driven, technology oriented organization with global operations. Axact
provides a broad range of services to businesses and consumers across the globe, maintaining
an unrelenting focus on quality service and customer satisfaction.
Founded in 1997 during the days of the dot com boom, Axact has grown from strength to
strength, making its mark on the globe through its world-class services and products which
serve more than 8.3 million customers. Axact has its offices in Karachi, Islamabad and Dubai
with strategic partners and associates in 100 countries. Currently, Axact has over 5,200
employees and associates worldwide.
Axact recruits only the best and offers our quality human resource excellent
remuneration packages, world class facilities and comprehensive benefits. In addition to this,
employees are evaluated using an impartial and efficient performance measurement system.
Axactians are offered excellent opportunities for career growth and development

Companys Mission
At Axact we work to be the number 1 with more than 50% of the revenues and profits of
every global market we enter and at the same time deploy our core competencies towards the
socio-economic development. This is our mission and everything we do reflects this only this
and nothing else.

Department of User Interface (UI)


User Interface (UI) Department at Axact is responsible for creating interfaces that
organize information for users. The UI department also creates complex user interfaces for a
variety of applications, such as websites, computer programs and databases and is also
supposed to maintain these interfaces. This will require advanced knowledge of HTML, CSS,

AJAX, Flash, and other computer publishing environments. UI department also coordinates with
other departments, organizing information to be useful for the audience of the department.

Hiring Procedure
The hiring process includes several steps. From the time you apply for a job until the
time you accept a job offer, you will go through a series of steps as you progress through the
hiring process from completing a job application to coming on board as a new employee.
The first step in the hiring process is, of course, to apply for jobs and to get your
application into contention for the jobs you are interested in.
Once you have applied, applicant tracking systems are used by many employers to
process job applications and to manage the hiring process. Applicant tracking systems
provide an automated way for companies to manage the entire recruiting process, from
receiving applications to hiring employees.
Once you are short listed from hundreds of applicants, you are selected for the interview.
If the interviewer is satisfied, you are than given an offer letter telling you that you are
now part of the company.

Job Description
Job Description for the User Interface Leadership Program
Job description for this position
Individual will be responsible for website user interface development with a passion for
technology and perfect combination of XHTML, CSS and JavaScript skills. Individual will work
closely with web graphic designers and various departments in the process of website
development. Individual must be able to develop websites as per W3C standards. Proficiency in
JQuery, AJAX, Scripting and DIV based development is an added advantage.
Nature of Work
Axact is one of the global leaders in Web Development industry. The User Interface
department is a department that works to develop websites as per W3C standards. In order to
expand its global outreach, Axact is looking forward to working with some of the finest
individuals with excellent designing Skills- individuals who have desire to learn, develop, excel
and achieve the highest standards. Working on strict deadlines, the individuals must be target
oriented and highly motivated and have a flair for accepting challenges.
Suitable Profile for this Program
Degree Diploma Holder in Web Development

Minimum1-2 years of experience in the area of Web Development

Skills required for this position


Strong command on HTML, CSS, Dreamweaver, Adobe Brilliance with JavaScript
(JQuery and other libraries and frameworks) and AJAX

Knowledge of best practices regarding W3C standards, SEO, and accessibility

Ability to work under pressure and strict deadlines

Strong People Management Skills

Organisational Objectives
When a sole trader sets up they may have some unstated aims or objectives - for example to
survive for the first year. Other businesses may wish to state exactly what they are aiming to do
and Axact is one of those organisations who has a clear aim and objective.
At Axact, we work to be the number 1 with more than 50% of the revenues and profits of every
global market we enter and at the same time deploy our core competencies towards the socioeconomic development.

Curriculum Vitae

Amna Asad
anmol1005@hotmail.com

Objectives
An excellent web developer, confident in dealing with people from all walks of life. Ambitious and
focused whilst appreciating the need to remain flexible.
I want to seek an organization that believes in excellence of work and where environment is suitable
for professional growth. I am looking to explore my true potential by integrating my practical and
academic knowledge with a dynamic professional environment.

Education
HND in Computing

Grafton College of Management Science, IBD

in Progress

Diploma in Graphics

Arena Multimedia

in Progress

F.A (Comp, Stats, Geo.)

Islamabad College for Girls, Islamabad

2009

Matric (Science)

Islamabad Model College for Girls, I-10/4

2007

Skills
Computer Skills

I have knowledge of, and am competent in the use of Microsoft Word, including Excel and
Power Point.

I am a confident internet user and have used the web to research many topic areas for my
course.

I am also familiar with the email systems.

Average Typing speed is 45 wpm.

Graphic Designing (Short Course)


University College of Advanced Technology (UCAT), Saddar, Rawalpindi.
Web Designing/Development
Adobe Dreamweaver, HTML, CSS, JQuery, SEO, Adobe Flash and Action Scripting

Experience
Sales Manager

Tamveelz Boutique

2008-09

Online Captcha Data Entry

OCR 7

Jul 2010-Sep 10

Web Developing/Designing

Freelance (Part Time)

Nov 2010- Present

ACM Professional Standards


Association for Computer Machinery (ACM) is a scientific computing society. Following are ACM
Code of Ethics and Professional Standards that they expect from computing professionals.
Strive to achieve the highest quality, effectiveness and dignity in both the process and
products of professional work.
Acquire and maintain professional competence.
Know and respect existing laws pertaining to professional work.
Give comprehensive and thorough evaluations of computer systems and their impacts,
including analysis of possible risks.
Honour contracts, agreements, and assigned responsibilities.
Improve public understanding of computing and its consequences.
Accept and provide appropriate professional review.
Access computing and communication resources only when authorized to do so.

Source: www.acm.org/membership/COE_Flyer.pdf

BCS CODE OF CONDUCT


1. Public Interest
You shall:
Have due regard for public health, privacy, security and wellbeing of others and the
environment.
Have due regard for the legitimate rights of Third Parties.
Conduct your professional activities without discrimination on the grounds of sex, sexual
orientation, marital status, nationality, colour, race, ethnic origin, religion, age or
disability, or of any other condition or requirement
Promote equal access to the benefits of IT and seek to promote the inclusion of all
sectors in society wherever opportunities arise.

2. Professional Competence and Integrity


You shall:
Only undertake to do work or provide a service that is within your professional
competence.
NOT claim any level of competence that you do not possess.
Develop your professional knowledge, skills and competence on a continuing basis,
maintaining awareness of technological developments, procedures, and standards that
are relevant to your field.
Ensure that you have the knowledge and understanding of Legislation and that you
comply with such Legislation, in carrying out your professional responsibilities.
Respect and value alternative viewpoints and, seek, accept and offer honest criticisms of
work.
Avoid injuring others, their property, reputation, or employment by false or malicious or
negligent action or inaction.
Reject and will not make any offer of bribery or unethical inducement.

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3. Duty to Relevant Authority


You shall:
Carry out your professional responsibilities with due care and diligence in accordance
with the Relevant Authoritys requirements whilst exercising your professional judgement
at all times.
Seek to avoid any situation that may give rise to a conflict of interest between you and
your Relevant Authority.
Accept professional responsibility for your work and for the work of colleagues who are
defined in a given context as working under your supervision.
NOT disclose or authorise to be disclosed, or use for personal gain or to benefit a third
party, confidential information except with the permission of your Relevant Authority, or
as required by Legislation.
NOT misrepresent or withhold information on the performance of products, systems or
services (unless lawfully bound by a duty of confidentiality not to disclose such
information), or take advantage of the lack of relevant knowledge or inexperience of
others.

4. Duty to the Profession


You shall:
Accept your personal duty to uphold the reputation of the profession and not take any
action which could bring the profession into disrepute.
Seek to improve professional standards through participation in their development, use
and enforcement.
Uphold the reputation and good standing of BCS, the Chartered Institute for IT.
Act with integrity and respect in your professional relationships with all members of BCS
and with members of other professions with whom you work in a professional capacity.
Notify BCS if convicted of a criminal offence or upon becoming bankrupt or disqualified
as a Company Director and in each case give details of the relevant jurisdiction.
Encourage and support fellow members in their professional development.
Source: http://www.bcs.org/upload/pdf/conduct.pdf

Comparison with BCS/ACM Professional Standards


Professional Standards are a set of guiding principle that many companies use to assist
professionals realize how they are expected to execute their work as a member of that
profession. Professional standards delineate how employees should do their work and approach
their customers.
Professional standards help employees by providing them with direction to act within the
ethics of the profession. These standards can make certain performance the expected custom
from any member of that profession, and can convey a positive message to people outside the
profession.
For achieving maximum quality and professional work I need to consider every single
step of BCS/ACM professional standards. For this I need complete knowledge about the

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processes and the products. If I compare myself with the above mentioned professional
standards I feel that I am aware with the standards but I still need to work on some areas for
example understanding the principles of an organization and know about their terms and
conditions
for
employment.

Competencies
As mentioned in curriculum vitae. I am competent in many of the web designing
applications that are required for job. Besides web designing I am also competent in word
documentation, spread sheets (creating simple accounting sheets, invoices, attendance, etc.).
Most importantly I am hands on experience in internet research. It might not seem
important but in web designing client come from every field/profession, so for this purpose web
designer should get some research done before starting his/her work, in order to satisfy clients
requirements.
As an employee I can check my skills level using various tools apart from being a good
observer. SWOT Analysis, Maslows Need Hierarchy Theory and Johari Window are few of the
tools that can be employed.

SWOT Analysis:
Strengths:
Can handle graphics software very well:

Adobe Photoshop
Adobe Illustrator
Adobe Dreamweaver
Adobe Flash
Urdu Inpage

Hard working person


Weaknesses:
Since my job is to deal with machines and software, it requires a lot of concentration, I have to
spend a lot of time working on my computer on my own, I feel that I need to brush up my
communication skills so that I can present my work myself, because no one can present my
creation as nicely as I can myself.
Opportunities:
Since I enjoy my job and I feel that it satisfies me, I am always on the hunt for new opportunities
so that I can keep my skills up to date. I can start my own company once I have gotten enough
knowledge.
Threats:
Unique codes can easily be copied by other developers. Apart from this, fierce competition is
another threat, since every developer tries to prove that he/she is the best.

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Maslow Need Hierarchy Theory


Abraham Harold Maslow (1908-1970) was an American psychologist known as one of
the founders and principle exponents of humanistic psychology. According to Abraham Maslow,
when one need is satisfied, another one wakes up. He developed a model known as Maslows
Hierarchy of Needs. According to Maslow, before satisfying high-level needs; low-level needs
must be satisfied. There are basically five needs:

Self-Actualization
Esteem Needs
Social Needs
Safety Needs

Physiological Needs
Maslows Hierarchy of Needs
Physiological Needs
Physiological needs are those that are necessary for life, such as:

Air
Water
Food
Sleep etc.

Safety
Once physiological needs are satisfied/met, and then persons attention automatically turns to
next high-level need that is safety. This includes:

Security of body
Of employment
Of resources
Of the family
Of health

These needs can be fulfilled by living in safe home with safe surroundings, medical insurance,
or financial reserves etc.

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Social Needs
Once both low-level physiological and safety needs are satisfied, higher level social, selfesteem and self-actualizations needs become important; first of which are social needs. This is
related to interaction with other people and includes:

Friendship
Belonging
Family
Relationship

Esteem
Once a person is satisfied with social needs and feels a sense of belonging, the need to feel
important awakes. This means:

Self for one self and others


Achievement
Recognition
Confidence

Self-Actualization
It is the last need in Maslows Hierarchy of Needs. It is a quest of reaching ones full potential,
which unlike other needs is never fully satisfied.
People at this level tend to needs such as:

Lack of prejudice
Truth
Wisdom
Acceptance of acts

According to Maslow, very few percentage of population reaches this level.


Personal Analysis
If I compare myself with Maslows Hierarchy of Needs, I feel I am on Esteem level as my first
three levels; physiological, safety and social needs are pretty much satisfied.
To meet esteem level, I feel that I still need to do a lot of effort to prove myself as a prominent
web developer of this company. For this purpose I will carry some skill test so that I can make a
development plan.

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Skills Audit
This is a skill audit chart. I will rate my current skills according to its importance with
respect to employment and it will also show my competency in a particular skill.
Once the rating is done, multiply the number in the column marked Competence with
that in the column Job Importance. For example, if rating for verbal and written communication
competence at 2, but these skills are very important for job and rated it at 5, then overall score
would be 5 X 4 = 20.
Rating Chart
Competence- How competent are you in
this skill?
1. Unskilled
2. Not very proficient
3. Adequate
4. Fairly proficient
5. Highly proficient

Job Importance- How important do you


think this skill is in Employability?
1. Unnecessary
2. Not very important
3. Helpful
4. Fairly important
5. Essential

Key
Score
1-5
6-10
11-15
16-20
21-25

Colour

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SKILLS

COMPETENCE

JOB IMPORTANCE

COMPETENCE
X
JOB IMPOIRTANCE

COMMUNICATION
Written:
Ability to express self
well in written
Verbal:
Informal-ability to
network easily with
people
Formal-ability to
express self clearly
and concisely to a
group of people
Non-verbal:
Listening-ability to
attend actively to
others views and
ideas and understand
their point of view
Body Languageability to match body
language
appropriately to what
is being said verbally

15

25

25

WORKING WITH OTHERS


Cooperation
Ability to collaborate
effectively within a
team
Negotiation
Ability to reach a
mutually satisfactory
outcome through
compromise
Sensitivity
Ability to respond
appropriately to
individual differences,
e.g., age, gender, etc.
Leadership
Ability to encourage
and motivate others
Ability to supervise or
direct work of others
Ability to evaluate
competing priorities to
plan ahead

20

20

15

15
10
12

16

SKILLS

COMPETENCE

JOB IMPORTANCE

COMPETENCE
X
JOB IMPOIRTANCE

Information Technology
File Management Techniques
Ability to create, store
and retrieve files
Word Processing (e.g. MS Word)
Ability to use a word
processing (WP)
package to produce a
variety of formats of
documents
Spreadsheets (e.g. Ms Excel)
Ability to use a
spreadsheet to record
and manipulate
different sets of data
Database (e.g. MS Access)
Ability to retrieve
information from a
database
Presentation
Ability to create and
display a PowerPoint
presentation
Information & Communication
Ability to send and
receive e-mail
Ability to send and
receive attachments
by e-mail
Ability to use an
internet browser
Ability to use search
engines
Ability to download
files from the internet
and transfer to WP

25

15

20

20

15

25
25

25
25
25

Problem Solving
Creativity
Ability to generate
new ideas or
conceive existing
ideas in a new way
Organisation and Planning

20

17

SKILLS

COMPETENCE

JOB IMPORTANCE

Ability to set down a


systematic sequence
of activities and carry
them through in an
effective manner
Research
Ability to gather
information in a
systematic way to
establish certain facts
or principles
Analysis
Ability to understand
and summarise
information
Initiative
Ability to initiate, take
decisions act
resourcefully

COMPETENCE
X
JOB IMPOIRTANCE

5
12

20

16

16

IMPROVING OWN LEARNING AND PERFORMANCE


Self Management
Self awarenessability to identify and
reflect on own
strengths and
weaknesses in
relation to:
Personal
Development
Educational
Development
Career
Development
Effective learningability to learn from a
range of situations
and apply learning in
a variety of contexts
Reasoning skills
ability to defend
argument using
logical and systematic
thinking based on
sound evidence
Reflection- ability to
reflect on and critique
own performance

15

15

12

12

18

SKILLS

COMPETENCE

Study skills
Ability to manage and
prioritise time to meet
deadlines
Ability to identify
relevant sources of
information, including
people and reference
material
Ability to use a library
to find books and
journal articles
Ability to take notes,
organise them, and
integrate them with
other sources of
information
Ability to reference
materials using an
appropriate system,
e.g., Harvard or
Vancouver

JOB IMPORTANCE

COMPETENCE
X
JOB IMPOIRTANCE

5
20

25

10

15

10

Web designing/Web development


Web designing
Ability to design a
web template
Hands on experience
on multiple web
designing software
Ability to give multiple
design ideas for one
client
Web development
Languages- have
command on HTML
PHP
CSS
JQuery
Action Scripting
Java scripting
AJAX
Develop sites
according to W3C
standards
Ability to work on any
web editor

25
25

25

25
15
20
20
20
10
10
20

16

19

Why I have used these tools?


I have used three tools to assess my skills. I have used SWOT Analysis because it has
identified my strength, weaknesses, opportunities ahead and threats with in my field of
employment. Studying from Maslow Need Hierarchys perspective has enlightened me that on
which need level I am at the moment. Last but not the least; The Skill Audit shows what my
highest scoring skills are so that I can polish those skills with further development tools.

Conclusion
My duties at Axact meet the ACM standards as Im well aware by the code of ethics and
of my skills and qualification as an I.T professional.
Different organization have different requirement from an I.T professional. For example
organizations expect from an I.T professional to solve any problem related to computer
hardware or software, whether it is his/her job or not. They also expect that every I.T
professionals should know how to upgrade system hardware. According to my skill audit I fulfil
these organizational requirements. I am well aware of web development rules set by W3C
(World Wide Web consortium).

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TASK 2

Evaluating Developmental Needs


Results: In task 1, I have used three tools SWOT analysis, Maslows Hierarchy of Needs and
The Skill Audit to reflect on my current skills
To evaluate developmental needs I picked three of the highest scoring* skills (and one that fulfil
job requirement) from the above skill audit (by multiplying your scores as shown above) that
needs to be develop further.
According to skill audit my highest scoring skills areas are:

Web designing/development
Information communication skills
Communication skills (non-verbal and formal communication)

Although these are my highest scoring skill areas but there is a need for development for
example learning new web languages, I also need to improve my communication skills so that I
can satisfy my client.
As the world is becoming global village, there is an urge to be known globally for this purpose
business organizations are moving towards having their business website. Website design and
development is useful in the creation of a website. For improving web development skills, I need
to find out a proper institution in my area, tutor/tuition, magazine...online courses, seminar etc.
Visit popular review sites regarding web development to know about latest advancements will
also help me improve in my area of work.
Skill Audit (Task 1) identified that I need to improve my verbal communication skills. For this my
employer can send me on special training courses. I can improve my verbal communication by
watching movies, watching and listening news, and reading newspapers and all those
magazines and software manuals which will give me an idea how to prepare a technical
document and present it to my respective clients.

* Reason for only showing high scoring skills is because it is required for the job and it doesnt mean that
I am best at it and I dont need further improvement in that field.

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TASK 3

Development Plan
Why should I plan?
Development planning should be done for many reasons. Including, but not limited to:

It can be too easy to put thinking about yourself and your own needs to the bottom of the to
do list. This may not serve you in the long run; we all need to keep our skills up to date in
todays job market.
Some needs are not easily or quickly fixed; you may need to discuss shadowing others,
arrange being away from work to attend a course, and you need time to organise this.
Its better to face a skills gap (better known as something I need to know how to do for my
job but dont) sooner, rather than wait until it causes you lots of time-wasting further down
the line.
Youre probably more likely to stick to the goals you set if you write them down and talk to
someone about them.
In our experience, sometimes people enthusiastically book to go on lots of courses in a
short space of time, but because they havent planned fitting them in with their workload,
they end up dropping out of courses last minute.

Development Plan
What do I want/need to
learn?

What will I do to achieve


this?

Improve web developing


languages
PHP
Java scripting
AJAX

Find someone who


knows how to do what
you want to do, and
ask them about it.

Seek out, or volunteer


for, an event, activity or
task that would help
you
develop
the
experience you are
looking for
Forums are the best
way to get feedback
so, join some web
related forums and
post queries

What resources and/or


support do I need?
Look for self-teaching
materials (e.g. online
tutorials)
Read books or guides
recommended by
professionals.

22

Find out what are


Join BCS or ACM to
professional standards
receive their news letters
set by British Computer
Visit their websites to be
Society (BCS) or
up to date
Information communication
Association for
skills
Computer Machinery
(ACM) for IT
professionals.
Follow those standards
to be an efficient IT
professional.
Keeping in mind my current schedule and after gathering information about the resources I
need, I have developed the following plan:
Skill

Action

Web developing
languages
PHP
Java scripting
AJAX

Review Date

Review Progress

1. I asked my friends to
recommend some good
institution or a teacher who
can help me start learning
these skills.
2. I took admission in Arena
Multimedia Designing School
and enrolled in a one month
short course (mid October,
2012)

Every Saturday I had to


submit an assignment.
On Monday, I was given
feedback.

Final Project result


will give details.

3. Search for books and


gathered them.

PHP for dummies, Java


scripting for Dummies
& AJAX for Dummies
Visiting these forums
Sitepoint, CSS tricks.
Lynda three days a
week.

4. Joined online Forums so that I


can ask and get answers.

5. To start reading and


understand ACM and BCS.
I will attend a workshop called
Forth Dimension for communication
skills and to build confidence.

Information
Communication Skills

Besides feedback from


course instructor,
On Every Sunday, I
allocate one hour for
applying what I learn.

Mid December

Time Table
Time

Mon

Tue

Wed

Thu

Fri

Sat

8 am-11am

Lecture at
Arena

Lecture at
Arena

Lecture at
Grafton

Lecture at
Arena

Lecture at
Arena

Lecture at
Arena

2 pm-5pm
9pm

Lecture at
Grafton
To read
new
forum
posts

Sun

Lecture at
Grafton
To read
new forum
posts

To read
new forum
posts

To read
book

23

TASK 4

Development progress
What do I want/need to
learn?

Development progress

Improve web developing


languages
PHP
Java scripting
AJAX

Followed
highly
recommended
tutorials.
Joined a forum to get help where
needed.
Practiced making a website

After spending few weeks, I have learned basics of developing languages i.e. PHP, Java
scripting and AJAX. These were the core skills required for the job mentioned above. I have
successfully learned these and will now be able to further improve it while working in the
organisation via under the supervision of my senior staff members.

IT, Web developing and designing emerged out as the best skills I possess at the
moment. My organization needs these skills. By learning advanced developing languages such
as PHP, Java scripting etc. I have better chances of working with some of the well-known
companies.

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LO 3
Task 1

Team work/Team Dynamics


A productive team has members that share same goals; same vision and have
interdependence that requires both verbal and physical communication. Teams come into
existence through shared attitudes. They may come together for a number of different reasons,
but their goals are the same - to achieve peak performance and experience success. The ends
may differ but the means by which one gets there is the same - teamwork. Views of every
member of the team are valuable when it comes to teamwork.
Team Dynamics are the unseen forces that operating between different people with in a
team. Team Dynamics can strongly influence how a team reacts, behaves or performs, and the
effects of team dynamics are often very complex.
The reality is that positive team experiences come from:
1. Using members individual personal abilities to enhance the entire teams effectiveness.
2. Knowing that being on a good team isnt random. Rather, it is a function of ones
relationship behaviour and what you and others do.
3. Taking personal responsibility for the quality of relationships and team outcomes.

Belbins Team Roles


A team is not a bunch of people with job titles, but a congregation of individuals,
each of whom has a role which is understood by other members. Members of a team seek
out certain roles and they perform most effectively in the ones that are most natural to
them.
Dr. R. M. Belbin
Belbins team role measures an individuals behaviour, strength and weakness in the
workplace. If people come to know of their own abilities, then they can use their strengths to
advantages and try to manage their weakness. According to Belbin, a team can be successful if
there are nine different types of people in a team. Following are the nine team roles:

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Team Roles

Plant (PL)

Resource Investigator
Co-ordinator
Shaper
Monitor Evaluator

Team worker
Implementer

Completer Finisher
Specialist

Contribution

Allowable weaknesses

Creative, Imaginative,
Dominant, Very High IQ,
Introvert

Preoccupied to communicate
with other team members or
contribute to teams
objectives.
Stable, dominant, extrovert, Can easily become bored,
outgoing, develops contact
demoralised and ineffective
Confident, indentifies talent, Offloads own share of work
good communicator
Quick to challenge, social Offend others feelings
leader, task leader
Strategic, analysing problems Very serious, critic rather than
and assessing the judgements a creator, can lower a teams
and contributions of the other
morale
Co-operative, good listeners
Dislike personal confrontation
Practical
organiser,
turns Slow to respond to new
strategies into manageable possibilities
tasks
Anxious, looks out for error Inclined to worry about what
and removes them.
might go wrong.
Single-minded,
dedicated, Contributes only on a narrow
self-starting
front.

The work of Belbin has given a clearer insight into the internal group relationships and the
clarification of the roles needed for a team or group to work effectively.

Team Development and Managing work within a team


Teams go through multiple stages of development. There are four stages of team
development and all teams lie somewhere along that continuum: Forming, Storming, Norming
and Performing.

Performing
Norming
Storming

Forming

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Forming
Forming stage in which members are positive and polite. Some members are anxious,
as they haven't yet worked out exactly what work the team will involve. Others are simply
excited about the task ahead. It is characterized by introductions and socializing activities. In
some teams, members may be somewhat tentative and may not fully understand the purpose of
the team. But in others, they may get right down to identifying what each member can contribute
to meeting the objective and planning an agenda. Team members are introduced to one
another, so they can get along well and get the job done.

Storming
This phase provides a foundation for effective interaction in the next phases. It is
characterised by individual assertiveness, hidden agendas, conflict and discomfort. Significant
role negotiation is the undercurrent. This stage provides a foundation for effective interaction in
the next stages. Cliques may form, and a struggle for leadership may take place. Individual
members may b dissatisfied with the teams performance at this stage and may reflect that
feeling with derogatory comment about the team.

Norming
The team members know each other better as they gradually move into a Norming
phase. They move by socialising together, and ask each other for help where needed. The team
begins to focus on their goal/aim and to develop a team spirit. Problems are addressed as
mutual. Now the progress is seen towards the teams goals, as the team develops a strong
commitment towards their goal.

Performing
When the team reaches the "performing" stage, hard work leads directly to progress
towards the shared vision of their goal, supported by the structures and processes that have
been set up. Individual team members may join or leave the team without affecting the
performing culture.

27

Task 2

Different Types of Teams


Teams can be classified according to their tasks and can perform variety of things. A
team is capable of achieving results that individuals who constitute the team cannot achieve in
isolation. However, this does not guarantee that the team will function well.
There are four most common forms of teams likely to be found in an organization. These are:

Problem-solving Teams
Self-managed Teams
Cross-functional Teams
Virtual Teams

Problem-solving Teams
This team is composed of 5-12 members from the same department of an organization,
who meet for few hours each week and have discussion on ways to improving quality, efficiency
and work environment.
Problem-solving teams help in solving organizational problems.
Self-managed Teams
This team is composed of 10-15 people. They take responsibilities of their ex
supervisors. These teams select their own members, and these members evaluate each others
performance.
Cross-functional Teams
These teams are made of employees different departments of an organization who are at same
hierarchical level; work together to achieve a task. They allow other from different areas of an
organization to exchange information, develop new ideas, solve a problem etc.
Virtual Teams
A virtual team consists of people who are at distant place and use computer technology
for communication to achieve a common goal. They collaborate via internet.

Team Management Software


There are number of softwares available in market for managing teams. These
softwares are designed to automate the administration and track performance. They are webbased softwares which help in managing people, schedules, communication and in some cases
payments.
Following are few softwares for team management:
WebEx- provides online meeting, web conferencing and video conferencing.
Teamr-another web based application that allows organizers to manage their
members and schedules effectively and efficiently.
Skype- a very popular voice-over-internet protocol that provides communication
services via voice, video and instant messaging over the internet.

28

LO4
Task 1

Problem Solving
Problems come in many forms and regardless of the form problem; teams commonly do
not know where to begin or how to proceed to solve it. Teams try different approaches until
something works out.
Problem solving is a daily activity in organisations. A methodology that teams in
companies frequently use is the seven steps of problem solving. This helps a team figure out
where to start whenever it encounters an obstacle.

Seven steps of Problem Solving


These steps help keep teams focused on task.
Reflect and act
on learnings

Review and
evaluate

Implement the
solution

Develop solution
and action plan

Identify the main


problem cause

Describe the
current process

Define the
Problem

Source: The Problem Solving Memory Jogger 2000 and Corporate Training Manuals

29

These are very simple steps yet they help in achieving organizational objectives. Team
members work diligently and their focus is always learning and improving their skills.

Problem Solving Tools/Methods


Teams need additional tools to progress through the above mentioned steps. These tools
are useful for learning as well as problem solving.
Brain storming
Affinity diagram
Nominal group technique
Pareto charts
Flowcharting
Interrelationship digraph
Cause-and-effect diagram
Data collection
Information System Tool: Water fall, RAD, Spiral, Prototyping and Incremental etc
(explained in 4.2)
Brain storming
Brain storming is a very common method for idea generation. Each team member writes
down all the ideas that pop up in his/her head related to the topic/problem.
Affinity diagram
It is method of organising disorganised list of brainstormed ideas. The team makes a
category names related to items and places each of brainstormed idea in a respective category.
In this method duplicate ideas are deleted.
Nominal group technique
The Nominal group Technique help teams to prioritize problems. Often team has to face
more than one problem, and not all problems are equal. In this situation team has to prioritize
the most urgent problem to tackle first.
Pareto Chart
Pareto chart is a bar graph. It is used to compare quantities.
Flowcharting
It is a representation of all the steps, activities, and tasks in a process. In organisations
flowcharts are used to find ways to improve a process by combining, reordering or deleting
steps.

30

Task 2

Automation with the help of computers has made work for business organisations time
efficient and error free. All the data is stored in digital format rather than in print format; so
data/files are easier to locate and manage/organise.

What is the problem?


To develop business information system for a retail store. Retail store owner has
following requirements for system such as Inventory, Sales, Invoices, Staff, and Payroll.

What is Business Information System?


Business information systems are those processes and controls that provide effective
and efficient reports to run a business. This include, purchases, sales, inventory and cost of
goods, selling prices, payroll, accounting, human resources, list of customers, credit information,
and more.

Which system development approach will be used?


To develop a business information system we follow a system development life cycle
(SDLC) procedures. SDLC is a process for developing or altering information system. If
procedure is followed correctly then SDLC results in a high quality information system that
meets or sometimes exceeds clients expectations.

Systems
Planning and
Selection

Systems
Implementation
and Operation

SDLC

Systems
Analysis

Systems Design

31

Phases of SDLC
To get a desired result software developers follow SDLC phases/stages. There are four
direct stages and two indirect stages of SDLC.
4 direct stages
1. Analysis- needs of retail store/shop keeper
2. Design (structure)
System design-what kind of modules are needed
Detailed design-how these modules will be implemented
Decision table
Flow chart
DFD
Symbol tables
3. Coding- computer understandable form
4. Testing- each and every step of software
2 indirect stages
1. Feasibility study
2. Maintenance
Corrective- to fix and remove the errors at the spot with passage of time.
Adoptive- future concerns should be kept in mind. Software must be flexible for
making changes in future i.e. add or remove features.

Project Planning
(Feasibility) Phase

Analysis
Phase

Design Phase

Coding

Testing

Maintainance
(Support)
Phase

Systems Life Cycle

32

Procedure
Project Planning or Feasibility study
This phase is a business driven process that defines, from an organisations perspective,
the purpose, goal, and scope of the project, problem fix, enhancement, maintenance, upgrade
or change in an information system is discussed in this phase.
Developers then document the above mentioned requirements as well as the justification, the
risks and the success criteria. Time and cost factor is also discussed in this phase.
Analysis Phase
In this phase, developers gather information regarding business problem and
learn/listen to needs of a client in this case a retail store owner. System requirements and
prioritizing of requirements are also discussed in this step.
Design Phase
In this phase interface of information system is designed. How the front end or interface of
the system will look is decided. Not only the main interface but following features are also
designed in this phase:

Application architecture
User interface design
System interface design

Coding
By Coding I mean computer understandable form/language and this is the most
important phase of SDLC. Everything we have designed in the previous phase now needs to be
code down so it can become functional. Components/modules of
software are
constructed/coded separately. In this phase translation of solution needs from business
language into logical and technical system requirements takes place. While writing the code,
developers make sure that business requirements are met.
Testing
Once the coding of every module; Inventory, Sales, Invoices, Staff, and Payroll is
constructed, it is now time to test the system. Each and every part of every module is tested to
make sure that it is error free. If any error is found or any component of the system is not giving
desired outcome its code is rewritten and tested again for any flaw.
Implementation and Maintenance
After the system is tested and is error free it is ready to be delivered to its respective
client. System/software developer installs the system at clients premises and trains the user. To
maintain system small patches, repairs and updates must be provided with the passage of time.
To enhance system small upgrades or enhancements should be given to expand system
capabilities.

33

SDLC approaches/ methodologies


Number of SDLC approaches /models has been created to manage complexities during
developing, such as: water fall, spiral, Iterative or incremental, prototyping and Rapid
Application Development (RAD).

Waterfall
Project specification
frozen
Analysis specification
Project Planning
frozen
Design specification
Analysis
frozen
Coding specification
Design
frozen
Testing specification
Coding
frozen
Testing
Implementation

Finished system
delivered exactly as
required

Waterfall Approach
Each life cycle phase is completed in sequence and then the result of the phase flow onto the
next phase. Once the phase is completed and working on next phase is started there is no
going back (just like waterfall). Deliverables of each phase is done via written documentation.
The decisions made at each phase are frozen and they cannot be changed.
Advantages/strengths of Waterfall Approach
Advantages or strengths of waterfall approach are:

Progress of system development is measureable


System requirements are identified long before programming begins
It minimizes changes to the requirements as the project proceeds

Disadvantages/weaknesses of Waterfall Approach


Disadvantages or weaknesses of Waterfall Approach are:

Before programming begins, design must be completely specified on paper


Inflexible, slow, costly
Problems are often not discovered until system is tested.
Difficult to respond to changes as there is not turning back.
Excessive documentation

34

Spiral

Each cycle is involves a progression through the same sequence of steps, for each portion of
the product and for each of its levels of elaboration, from an overall concept-of-operation
document down to the coding of each individual program.
(Boehm, 1986)
Advantages/strengths of Spiral Approach
Advantages or strengths of spiral approach are:

Useful in helping to select the best methodology to follow for development of given
software, based on project risk.
Can incorporate Waterfall, Prototyping and Incremental approaches as special cases in
the frame work

Disadvantages/weaknesses of Spiral Approach


Disadvantages or weaknesses of spiral Approach are:

Highly customized to each project


No firm deadlines
There is a risk because cycle continues with no termination condition

Incremental/Iterative
There are many ways for combining linear and iterative system development approaches, with
the main objective of each being is to minimize project risk by breaking a project into smaller
segments. The model is designed, deployed, and tested incrementally (a bit more is added

35

every time) until the system is completed. This approach has combined elements of waterfall
approach with iterative philosophy of prototyping.
Advantages/strengths of Incremental/Iterative Approach
Advantages or strengths of Incremental/Iterative approach are:

Moderate control is maintained over the life of a project through written documentation
Can go into production more quickly as incremental releases.
Gradual implementation provides the ability to monitor the effect of incremental changes.
After each phase, testing is conducted and flaws/errors of the system can be quickly
indentified.

Disadvantages/weaknesses of Incremental/Iterative Approach


Disadvantages or weaknesses of Incremental/Iterative Approach are:

Cost may exceed the cost of the organization.


As functionality is incremented, errors may arise related to system architecture.

Rapid Application Development (RAD)


RAD is a software development approach that emphasizes a short development. Using this
approach fast delivery of a high quality system can be achieved at a low cost. Main purpose is
to fulfil business needs which are achieved by using iterative Prototyping.
Disadvantages/weaknesses of RAD Approach
Disadvantages or weaknesses of RAD Approach are:

Functional version of system is available much earlier as compared to other approaches.


Produces system at lower cost.
Ability to rapidly change system elements from user point of view.
Saves time, money and human effort.

Advantages/strengths of RAD Approach


Advantages or strengths of RAD approach are:

Low cost and more speed may lead to lower quality of system.
Project may end up with more requirements than needed.

Which System Development Approach is best?


As this is a time constrained project and my client wants some requirements to be
delivered first, I think Iterative model is the best approach for Retail store information system.
Because application is highly interactive and has clearly defined user groups and system
functionality is also visible at user interface. We will send information to the client then they will
give feedback about the product.

36

Task 2

Business Information System for Retail Store


Business information system is an computerized system that creates or manages
information about an organisations activities. BIS includes applications whose primary purpose
is to facilitate transactions between an organisational unit and its customers e.g. an ecommerce system, client relationship management system, purpose-built or customised
database, finance or human resources systems. Business information systems that create or
manage records should have the appropriate functionally for these tasks, or they should
interface with other systems that manage the records.
For retail stores, restaurants, hotels etc. Special purpose software (SPS) is developed
which fulfils the requirements of these business. This software is known as Point of Sale
software (POS).

Point of Sale Software


Point of sale (POS) software is software that retailers use to calculate sales and operate
the cash drawer; it is the computerized cash register. Point of sale software adds up the sales
total, figures the state sales tax, calculates the change back from the amount tendered, and
automatically adjusts the store's inventory levels to debit the amount of inventory sold.
Point of sale software packages can vary considerably in capability, so the savvy retailer
will want to assess their own situation and needs before making a selection decision. At a
minimum, a point of sale system must handle sales, manage inventory database, run
a barcode scanner and allow user the capability of querying inventory and sales database in a
flexible way.
Features
The point of sale screen has the following features:

Easy to learn - You do not have to send your staff out for expensive training.

Easy to use - Requires minimum keystrokes and the mouse is never required (but you
can use it if you want).

Flexible - Handles any combination of discounts, taxes, returns, credits and sale
specials in one easy transaction.

Automatic - Applies automatic discounts or preferred price levels to special customers.

Rewarding - Helps your staff to practice suggestion selling and tracks their sales
commissions.

Accommodating - If something is not in stock you can send a customer order to the
purchase order system.

37

Secure - You control who can see the profit margins and stock counts.

Customer-oriented - Lets you reward your best customers with a bonus points
program.

Versatile - Prints sales slips, price quotes, packing slips and account invoices.

Up To Date - Works with all the current retail devices including bar code and credit card
readers, customer display, cash drawer, bar-coded scales, a two-colour receipt printer
and runs on any network.

POS Screen

The Client Database


A client database contains customer's names, addresses and purchase histories. It
keeps useful information about each customer that can helps with marketing and sales
management. Some features of the client database are:

Fast - Lets you find a customer fast using a name, phone number, or a point-and-shoot
pick list.

Informative - Shows you who bought what, when, for how much, how they paid, and
who sold it to them.

Complete - Lets you keep notes on individual customers and even a photo if you wish.

Accurate - Creates accurately targeted mailing lists for special promotions or even
product recalls.

38

This is an example of client's notes and purchase history. This information is searchable
and can help you produce targeted mailings.
Inventory Control / Purchase Orders
Good inventory control means balancing the expectations of your customers, so one must avoid
being either under stocked or overstocked. Here are some inventory control features:

Flexible - Auto-generate purchase orders using a variety of calculation methods.

Current - Get up-to-the-minute reports for sales, inventory, low stock, over stock, and
on-order items.

Precise - Read data from a portable stock counting device.

In Control - Do on-screen preview and editing of purchase orders.

Fine Tuned - Consider base stock, re-order points, re-order quantities and sales
performance when calculating orders.

Focused - Limit any report to selected items, suppliers or departments.

39

The inventory system includes a wide selection of processes from receiving & transferring stock
to importing & exporting stock data. The system also uses the internet to transmit inventory add
& changes, sales logs and stock levels between stores or to and from head office.
Security Features
Security refers to two different things:
This ability limits the access to information or functions of a software. This is used to make sure
that staff cannot make unauthorized transactions or see confidential information. Each
employee is assigned a password to determine their access level.
Some of the Retail Plus password features are:

Passwords determine the functions a person can use.


All sales transactions are logged with the date, time and name of the sales person.
Optional requirement for a manager's password before the system will void a sale.
A training mode, in which all POS functions can be used but no data is saved.
Password prompts that can be turned off.

40

Task 3

Benefits of Business Information System


It is an automated system that creates or manages organizations activities. With help of
business information system organizations work more efficiently and it saves time and human
labour. Information or data is updated instantly i.e. inventories and many more.
Let us consider the example of a retail store; selling everyday goods. Database used in
this store is developed in Oracle. The database can be viewed and edited on any internet
browser.
The database has many integrated features and comes with easy to use tools. Automated
extensions make this system effortless to use and update. Not only has this contained details of
inventory (products sale, purchase) of store but also the information about employees as well. It
is divided into two categories:

The Employees category: it contains information regarding their attendances, personal


details i.e. bank accounts, social security numbers etc.
Products category: it contains information of the product and available stock, inventories

Whether one needs details about an employee or product it can easily be accessed within
few seconds. Business information systems have made work efficient for organisations.

41

Resources
Websites
www.axact.com
www.prospects.ac.uk
www.teamtechnology.co.uk/tda/
www.teamtechnology.co.uk/teambuilding.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incremental_build_model
http://www.belbin.com/rte.asp?id=8
http://changingminds.org/explanations/preferences/belbin.htm
http://homepages.ed.ac.uk/calarks/arks/Materials/particip/Team_Roles.pdf
http://www.sabrehq.com/team_building_articles/belbin-team-roles.htm

Books
Successful strategies for team, Frances A. Kennedy, 2008

Others
ACM Code of conduct

42