You have just completed your degree and have now joined Abbott, Bronson and Cole, a professional services firm with a strong practice in Higher Education. You just learned about your first assignment — to help a major university develop plans for a major ERP implementation covering all business operations of the university, and potentially the academic functions as well.
One of the ABC partners, Patricia Abbott, asked that you provide some perspective on the ERP Program currently being implemented at OSU. She has asked that you prepare a brief memo summarizing the OSU effort.
Research the Workday Program at OSU. Fortunately, The university has provided a website for the community to enhance understanding and awareness for the entire Buckeye community. This should be your starting place:
Navigate from the home page to learn about the capabilities and features of the new business model. Once you have a good sense of the program, write a brief memo summarizing your findings. Your memo should address these questions, if possible:
- Program Scope: What business and academic functions will be moved over to the ERP Platform?
- ERP Product Suite Selected: Given that WorkDay is the core software suite being deployed, what are the key features/characteristics of the solution. Are other solutions included within the program as well?
- Business Objectives: What does OSU hope to achieve through its implementation program?
- Timing and Progress: What is the implementation timing? How long will it take, and where is OSU today?
- Audit Implications: Are there any accounting and auditing implications that come to mind?
Document your observations in a short memo to Patricia — 1-2 pages, single-spaced. Be sure to follow class standards for writing memos. (See sample document.)
1. This assignment is intended to get you thinking about the complexity of today’s business environment, and also the inherent risks associated with new ways of doing business. Additionally, you should gain some preliminary insights into the impact of ERP software on the business environment. The assignment is also intended to reinforce business writing skills, so be sure to format your response in a well-organized business memo.
3. Be sure to follow class standards for writing memos.
Buckeye Consulting Services
2100 Neil Avenue, Columbus OH 43210
Date: January 13, 2017
From: Rob Whittington
Subject: Formatting Business Memos for Impact
This memo provides an example of effective business writing, with special focus on how to organize your thoughts for effective, impactful communication. Since students in AMIS 3600 will be expected to write effectively for all assignments, you will want to read this memo carefully and apply the principles discussed to any assignments that require submission of a memo.
While business students at the Fisher College of Business have typically studied English composition in some depth, they often do not understand how to organize and format their ideas for the business setting. In particular, business readers (especially executives) often read memos at a glance, and so it is important that key ideas are very clear. Formatting should be used to highlight the structure of your argument, or guide the reader to your main points.
Structure of Information
Be sure to clearly state the purpose of your memo at the beginning, and you may want to explain how the memo is structured. But be sure to keep this part brief. If you are asking for some action in response, be sure that is clearly stated. The rest of your memo depends on the purpose and nature of you communication. For example, if you are making a recommendation, it often makes sense to provide some background, explain the issue or problem you are addressing, state the actual recommended action, and then provide supporting information, such as alternatives considered.
Formatting can make complicated information easy to understand, even at a glimpse. Here are some formatting techniques you should consider:
· Heading. For memos, be sure to identify the author, the audience, the date and the subject. This may become important later when an old memo is reviewed. Subject lines are especially important if your memo is an email, since the reader will often decide whether to open the email based on the subject.
· Titles. Use boldface titles to show the structure of your memo, allowing the reader to navigate easily through you ideas.
· Bullet Points. When you discussion involves a series of points (such as these formatting tips), use bullet or numbered points to break them out.
Other Points of Style
While you sometimes have to explain complex concepts, try to keep your writing simple and clear. You can best do this by:
· Keeping sentences short, where possible.
· Try to use active verbs to be clear about who is doing what.
· Be sure you have no spelling or grammar errors.
· When you think you have it all, reread and remove anything redundancies.
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Good luck with your class assignments!