Course Paper

   You have a choice to use either an existing company or a fictitious company(Please use a real company). In either case, the Project is to complete a written plan that will suggest a practical Strategic Direction for the company.   

The Plan will have 7 sections. The 6 sections will reflect each of the 6 TCOs plus a bibliography. Each section will be 2 – 3 pages in standard business proposal format.

The sections are:

  1. Strategy (TCO F)
  2. Core Competencies (TCO C)
  3. Industry Dynamics (TCO A)
  4. Technology Sourcing and Internal Innovation (TCO D)
  5. Product Development Strategy (TCO E)
  6. Strategy to protect innovations (TCO B)
  7. A bibliography listing your references for the project

Ideas to Help Prepare the Course Project

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Section 1 – Strategy

TCO F – Given an organizational and industry context, identify and suggest a deployment strategy that will facilitate the success of a technologically driven organization.

This is the most important part of the project, because it sets the direction for all other sections. In this section, you establish the strategy for an organization.

Often people refer to this component as the “Vision” or “Mission” of a company, but it is not. The Vision for a company could be that you want to be a market leader. However, the technology strategy tells everyone how you will achieve that market leadership. The technology strategy tells the various stakeholders – employees, customers, community, and stockholders – what you are going to do to achieve that market leadership. This strategy should be very clear and easy to understand so that everyone will be “on the same page” when it comes to working together toward that goal.

In this section, you should describe what “SHOULD” be the strategy of a technologically driven company. You should focus specifically on the technology strategy. You should think about all the things we learned in the class that will determine a strategy that will help the company succeed.

Remember that you can use either an existing company or a fictitious company. If you choose to use an existing company, you can visit their web site to see if their strategy is listed. Or you can do a web search on their technology strategy to see if anyone has written any stories about their strategy. For a fictitious company, you should make up a technology strategy that fits that type of company.

Examples of a Technology Strategy:

  • Verizon Wireless – Have the best network of all wireless carriers
  • Honda – Build the best engines
  • Keller – Deploy the best Internet based on-line and blended education technology, not build it, not own it, but use a 3rd party to provide it
  • Intel – Have the fastest and most powerful CPUs

The key is to be able to describe the strategy in a 1 or 2 sentence summary and in detail as well. The description should start or end with the simple sentence statement of the technology strategy. However, there must be sufficient detail to explain why that is the right strategy.

Section 2 – Core Competencies

TCO C – Given an organizational and industry context, identify the core technological competencies of the organization.

Like all subsequent sections of the project, this section is based on the Strategy Section.

Example:

  • Verizon Wireless Strategy is the having the best Network. Thus, the core competencies will be built around the network. Things like RF Engineers and wireless security experts would be detailed
  • Intel’s strategy is to build the fastest most powerful CPUs. Thus their core competencies will be built around CPU engineering
  • Keller’s strategy is to deploy the best on-line education technology. Thus their core competencies would be things like educational technology evaluation and on-line education curriculum development

The best way to do this section is to apply the three tests of a core competency (page 123) to the strategy that you detailed in the Strategy Section.

Section 3 Industry Dynamics

TCO A – Given a company situation be able to describe the industry dynamics of technological innovation.

Here you should take the strategy identified in Section 1 and describe in detail why that is the right strategy based on what is occurring in the industry. Provide as much detail as possible as to the industry trends and why you think those trends are important.

Section 4 – Technology Sourcing and Internal Innovation

TCO D – Given an organizational context, develop a plan to increase the innovative capabilities of the organization both through collaboration strategies and internal innovation.

Here you would offer ideas as to what is the best way to “Source” the technology that supports the strategy. A complete discussion about how best to manage the innovative capabilities of the company being described is required.

Section 5 – Product Development Strategy

TCO E – Given information about a company’s industry, and organization, formulate a technological innovation strategy through its new product development strategy.

Product Development is very important to an organization. This section will describe how the company will structure its product development. Obviously, the kind of structure will be determined directly by the technology strategy stated in Section 1.

Section 6 Strategy to protect innovations

TCO B – Given a company situation be able to determine whether and how to protect its technological innovations.

Using the things learned in the class, describe how you would use patents, trade secrets, copyrights, etc. to protect the Intellectual Property (IP) required to support the strategy.

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