Computers in many forms are an important part of our life. However, do you know the life stages of a computer?

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Computers in many forms are an important part of our life. However, do you know the lifestages of a computer? The life of a computer can be summarized into the following stages. Theinitial stage is the extraction of mineral resources from the earth. The second stage is tomanufacture these minerals into different parts of a computer through various processes. Thecomputers are then packed and transported to different locations in the world to be sold toindividuals and businesses. At some stage in its life it may need to be repaired when itmalfunctions. At the end of its life, the parts of a computer may either be recycled or go tolandfill.It should be noted that computers have some social and environmental impacts. For instance:• some mineral resources are non-renewable and also damage the environment on theirextraction.• manufacturing often happens factories in developing countries where there are cases ofworkers including young children getting exploited.• packing computers involve a significant amount of Styrofoam and cardboard whichhave their own environmental impact.• the transport of computers for thousands of kilometers has an environmental impact inthe form of large amount of carbon emissions• the use of computers requires electricity, which may be produced from coal, petroleum,or natural gas etc.In recent years, an increasing number of companies have become more aware of the importanceof sustainable development and are making solid efforts to reduce their social and environmentimpacts. For example, Dell- one of the largest computer corporations - aims to develop itsbusiness in a sustainable way. In this plan, Dell is committed to contribute in a positive way tothe environment (e.g. reducing greenhouse gas emissions), communities (e.g. providing grants)and people (e.g. maintaining a good relationship with worldwide fellow team members). Inaddition to this program, Dell features a technology recycling program, which gives discardedelectronic devices a new life through re-use or by recycling them. Dell became the firstcomputer company that does not export e-waste to developing countries for landfill. Assignment TasksAssume you are a newly appointed accountant in a local retail company - Mr tech. Originally,the business offered a wide selection of electronical devices, include computers, mobile phones,tablets, laptops. As the business was trying to expand its market and attract more customers, itexpanded its product lines to include television, digital camera, and home appliances.This is a private family business with 30 shareholders. Currently, the company has fivedifferent departments, include Accounting and Finance, Purchasing, Distribution and Logistics,Sales and Marketing, and Human Resources, with a total of 90 employees. Managers in eachdepartment are given the authority regarding operational decisions and their performance ismeasured based on the company's profit, and all the other employees receive the fixed salarypackage. The company pays taxes to Australia Taxation Office (ATO) on a regular basis.3The business has retail stores in the major city across Australia and online store. Since thecompany expanded its product line, managers from different departments found the number ofcomplaints received from customers have tripled. Most complaints are related to the productquality (defective: broken or not working properly with warranty), items consistently out ofstock, online shopping experience (delivery of wrong items and long response time to emails),and in-store experience (lack of attention from sales representatives), and some customers haveposted complaints on Mr Tech. social media. In order to enhance the overall performance, thecompany is considering using a range of key performance indicators in managing itsperformance. This is to ensure that the company keeps track of its performance and to achievethe objectives they set for the identified issues.A characteristic of this market is consumers are mainly attracted by new styles and designswith low prices, so the company always seeks to find the suppliers with low prices. Recently,a new supplier from China - SMART - contacted Purchasing department to seek collaboration.SMART demonstrated a series of electronic products released in recent few years, and themanager was impressed by its well-designed functions and low prices.However, after a careful investigation into this company's background, they found this supplierhas a major issue with labor conditions throughout their supply chains, including the use ofchild labor, low wages, and health and safety hazards, and long working hours. In terms of theenvironmental aspect, SMART consumes large amount of water in their production process,and wastewater discharge into the local river, and it did not take any action to solve this issue.The polluted water is no longer fit for drinking or laundry, fishes no longer exist in this river,and local residences complain that their homes are flooded by dirty water.Required1. In order to enhance company's performance, the CEO thinks it might be insufficient touse profit as the only performance indicator, and is considering using a range of keyperformance indicators to manage the business. You believe the Balanced Scorecard isa useful performance measure framework that can be used, as it gives management anoverall picture of company's performance. You have been asked to develop a BalancedScorecard to assist Mr Tech. in managing its overall company's performance anddemonstrate how it works to the management and staff in next company meeting. Youneed consider ONE or TWO metrics for Each perspective respectively and explain thereason why it has been selected and how it can be used to improve company'sperformance.2. The CEO of Mr Tech. believes the SMART is attractive to the company because of itslow price strategy. However, the CEO also has noticed the unprecedented awarenessfrom customers on the company's social responsibilities. The CEO approaches you todiscuss whether this supplier is better for company's strategic development. Provide anexplanation to the CEO with reference to the potential costs and benefits of workingwith SMART.3. After your analysis above, the CEO starts realizing the importance of working withsocial and environmental friendly suppliers, however, still does not have acomprehensive understanding to the positive and negative impact his company'sproducts might have both socially and environmentally. You decide to use the Life4Cycle Analysis (LCA) for a product that the company offers to enhance theirunderstanding. Draw the LCA, and select one or two stages of the LCA, identifying atotal of four possible social and environment impacts. If the impact is detrimental eithersocially or environmentally, give suggestions to minimize the impact. If the impact ispositive, give suggestions as to maximize the benefit. You are required to undertakesome research to answer this question.4. Finally, Mr Tech. would prefer not working with SMART. Some importantshareholders attempted to block this proposal. Their belief, as the owners of thiscompany, is that the company should aim to maximize the value of their shares,however, this business decision will have a detriment on the profit. Give ONE or TWOreal life examples to discuss how business could be impacted if they are working withunethical suppliers.5. Previously, Mr Tech. did not intend to report on their different aspects of performanceto the public. However, the CEO of Mr Tech. found many competitors regularly reporton their performances. CEO comes to seek your advices on why these competitorsreport on their performances. Also, briefly discuss what information could be reportedand where the information can be reported.

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Computers in many forms are an important part of our life. However, do you know the life stages of a computer?

  • Written in: 17-Oct-2019
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