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  • Computer Based Training Explained
    a number of companies developed specialist hardware and software which could mix video and graphics to deliver realistic training simulations When the PC arrived the sophistication that the specialist companies had developed quickly became mainstream CBT companies therefore stopped making hardware and concentrated on developing software to create and deliver CBT This was usually delivered remotely on floppy disks then CDs and DVDs before the advent of networks and the Internet took CBT online Benefits of CBT CBT is a lot more flexible than classroom based training or training in real life situations Students can go through training as and when they have spare time rather than being tied to a classroom schedule or waiting for their turn the relevant equipment Compared to learning from a book CBT is more interactive and there is evidence that learning is better remembered Compared to classroom situations CBT has less of a collaborative nature although this is beginning to change with Internet enabled training systems Learning professionals generally agree that the most effective training is gained from a combination of different methods CBT books classroom tutoring and real life experience What s Involved in Developing CBT There are three stages to producing a CBT program for a particular subject first computerising the subject knowledge second designing and constructing the training package a process known as authoring and finally building the program for distribution to the PC Subject matter experts are required for the first phase where knowledge is recreated using words pictures and video for later use Learning professionals then design and create the CBT using either specialist authoring software or general purpose software such as Flash The resulting program which usually includes questions and tests as well as lessons is then tested manufactured and delivered In some cases the PC will require

    Original URL path: http://www.bestpricecomputers.co.uk/glossary/computer-based-training.htm (2016-02-08)
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  • Customer Experience Management Software Explained
    the company as a unified whole just as the customer sees it To those inside the company the research and development department may be quite distinct from the marketing department or the technical service department but that is not how the customer sees it Any negative experience the customer has whether it be undue delays in handling a faulty item rudeness or ignorance from a telephone operator or defects in the product itself all contribute to shaping the perception of the company in the customer s mind It is this perception which Customer Experience Management advocates prize above all They insist that advertising accounts for only about a quarter of what goes into a customer s decision to make a purchase The remainder is made up from deeper level perceptions built up over longer periods of time and shared by customers with one another When consumers have an unusually positive experience with a company they tend to share it with their friends and colleagues becoming in effect advocates for the company Surveys have shown that even satisfied customers often switch their custom to other companies For the most part they regard companies as highly interchangeable service providers Only unusually positive experiences going well beyond mere satisfaction can create deep seated customer loyalty Customer experience management is in essence a management fad rather than an information technology based strategy or innovation Successful implementations of the approach require changes in virtually all aspects of the business However a number of customer experience management software solutions have appeared to help support these management goals These accomplish a variety of things not all of which are applicable to all companies One of the key problems identified by Customer Experience Management gurus is that different parts of an enterprise see the customer in different ways store data related to their own interactions with the customer in different databases and generally do not share enough information with each other for staff to have a clear overview at any point in time of a customer s previous history with the company For example the sales operator taking an order may not know that the customer returned a faulty hard drive the previous week and that the account has generated huge quantities of business over the years Armed with this knowledge the smart thing to do to strengthen the relationship might be to offer a 5 discount on the order currently being taken Some Customer Experience Management software solutions are therefore aimed at integrating all customer relevant corporate data and making it available for easy viewing by any personnel involved in dealing with customers directly Moreover Customer Experience Management software packages often incorporate routines for predicting customer behaviour in response to a sales pitch based on an automated analysis of all their previous interactions with the company Some will even suggest the next best approach to make to a customer simplifying the task for a human operator Much Customer Experience Management software is domain specific however aimed at

    Original URL path: http://www.bestpricecomputers.co.uk/glossary/customer-experience-management-software.htm (2016-02-08)
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  • Customer Information Management Explained
    thumb is called the 80 20 rule also known as the Pareto principle 80 of your profits come from 20 of your customers A good customer segmentation strategy will accord preferential treatment to the most profitable customers increasing customer loyalty and therefore customer retention and improving profitability over the long run It s a strategy born from another business truism that it s easier to retain customers than to win new ones A good Customer Information Management system creates the informational base on which sophisticated customer segmentation or customer relationship management strategies can be built Although it s a relatively new concept for most businesses elite luxury hotels have been been pursuing similar strategies for some time Information on the most frequent guests would be assiduously collected and made available to staff internationally so that personalised welcomes and individually tailored service could be offered each time the guest visited Naturally it is much easier to collate information about customers by means of software systems and a number of vendors now offer Customer Information Management solutions Customer Information Management Data Integrity Issues Some Customer Information Management applicates requires users to manually enter data on customers others simply permit the collation and collection of data items which are normally produced in the course of doing business such as emails or invoices Some packages of course offer both facilities Because of the near ubiquity of Microsoft Office software in company offices some Customer Information Management software is designed to interoperate with it The Livelink product from Open Text corporation and Microsoft s own Business Contact Manager which acts as an add on to Outlook are two of the most prominent examples Data duplication and data inaccuracy are serious concerns for any business which collects large volumes of customer information Anything from typing mistakes difficulty in reading bad handwriting or an error made by a customer services operator when talking to a customer over the phone can lead to imprecision in the data held in the company database Although sometimes the error may be trivial ultimately there can be serious consequences too ranging from unsuccessful deliveries to failure to spot a bad credit risk at an early stage For this reason some customer information management solutions offer the option of integrating the internal customer database with external databases holding large quantities of verified information such as names addresses and credit histories When this option exists there will often be sophisticated matching routines designed to identify commonalities between records held in the different databases even when some of the information stored may differ Customer Information Management Putting the Data to Work The data collected can be used in any number of ways For example when a call is made to technical support the support staff should be able to see at a glance the customer s history with the company including a display of purchases made and any previous difficulties they may have given rise to Call centre staff can make use of the information

    Original URL path: http://www.bestpricecomputers.co.uk/glossary/customer-information-management.htm (2016-02-08)
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  • CRM Software Solutions Explained and Defined
    and interpretation of that data That s where computers come in handy apart from the Solitaire you can play on them Computers can t of course transform the relationship you have with your customer That does take a cross department top to bottom corporate desire to build better relationships But computers and a good computer based CRM solution can increase sales by as much as 40 50 as some studies have shown An example of a CRM application would be in a car manufacturing business assuming they sell directly to end users If they maintained a database of which customers buy what type of product and when how often they make that purchase what type of options they choose with their typical purchase their colour preferences whether the purchase needed financing etc the manufacturer knows what marketing material to send out what new products to promote to each customer what preferences options may swing the sale whether a finance package should be included in the marketing material and when would be a good time to target each customer They could use the information to build a relationship with the customer by reminding customers of service dates product recalls and maybe even to send the customer a birthday card So how do you go about choosing a CRM software solution Using a consultant could save you time and money Software resellers are often good first line advisers as they have experience and feedback from selling competing CRM packages Some resellers offer wider packages including strategic planning and process management Want to do the research yourself Most of the big CRM software manufacturers have extensive advice pdfs and guides on their sites that reputedly hold your hand through the choosing process They are likely to be biased of course but can be

    Original URL path: http://www.bestpricecomputers.co.uk/glossary/crm-software-solutions.htm (2016-02-08)
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  • Database Management Systems Explained and Defined
    database subschemas through the use of passwords For example while a database may contain detailed customer information certain users may only be allowed access to customer names and addresses while others may be able to view payment specifications Access and change logs can be programmed to add even more security to a database recording the date time and details of any user making any alteration to the database Furthermore the DBMS is also responsible for the database s integrity ensuring that no two users are able to update the same record at the same time as well as preventing duplicate entries such as two employees being given the same employee number Database Models Database information normally consists of subjects such as customers employees or suppliers as well as activities such as orders payments or purchases This information must be organized into related record types through a process known as database design The DBMS that is chosen must be able to manage different relationships which is where database models come in Hierarchical databases organize data under the premise of a basic parent child relationship Each parent can have many children but each child can only have one parent In hierarchical databases attributes of specific records are listed under an entity type and entity types are connected to each other through one to many relationships also known as 1 N mapping Originally hierarchical relationships were most commonly used in mainframe systems but with the advent of increasingly complex relationship systems they have now become too restrictive and are thus rarely used in modern databases If any of the one to many relationships are compromised for e g an employee having more than one manager the database structure switches from hierarchical to a network In the network model of a database it is possible for a record to have multiple parents making the system more flexible compared to the strict single parent model of the hierarchical database The model is made to accommodate many to many relationships which allows for a more realistic representation of the relationships between entities Even though the network database model enjoyed popularity for a short while it never really lifted of the ground in terms of staging a revolution It is now rarely used because of the availability of more competitive models that boast the higher flexibility demanded in today s ever advancing age Relational databases RDBMS are entirely unique when compared to the aforementioned models as the design of the records is organized around a set of tables with unique identifiers to represent both the data and their relationships The fields to be used for matching are often indexed in order to speed up the process and the data can be retrieved and manipulated in a number of ways without the need to reorganize the original database tables Working under the assumption that file systems which often use the hierarchical or network models are not considered databases the relational database model is the most commonly used system

    Original URL path: http://www.bestpricecomputers.co.uk/glossary/database-management-systems.htm (2016-02-08)
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  • Database Marketing Explained
    customers These databases usually consist of basic personal details of customers along with details of their past transactions The information is either gathered from internal sales data or bought in from other organisations Business to Consumer B2C Consumer information is gathered by enterprises in a number of ways many of which consumers remain oblivious to see CRM These methods can range from requesting that the consumer fill in and return a warranty card to running promotional contests and sweepstakes Ideally enterprises prefer to gather as much information as possible about potential customers so they will employ any available methods to milk consumers for personal data The more information contained within a database the more accurate the results of its analysis Business to Business B2B B2B data is usually much more limited than consumer information but it can also be easier to procure Enterprises hoping to target businesses can simply get in touch personally or gather publicly available information about them However since B2B databases will usually only contain a few hundred or thousand pieces of information at most compared to potentially millions of pieces in a consumer database it is more difficult to build a targeted marketing plan Data Analysis Once a consumer or business database has been compiled it can then be broken down and analysed to produce valuable marketing information If the database is extremely limited this analysis can be performed manually but most consumer databases will contain so much data that specialised software tools are necessary to generate useful results Predictive analytics software allows data analysers to construct high quality predictive models of customer behaviour By studying the past purchases of consumers it can be possible to predict broad trends in their purchasing habits resulting in a somewhat accurate prediction of their future purchasing though of course

    Original URL path: http://www.bestpricecomputers.co.uk/glossary/database-marketing.htm (2016-02-08)
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  • Data Mining Software Explained and Defined
    data encouraging enterprises to look past basic data and search for hidden patterns and associations to aid in their business A wide range of industries now use data mining software to seek out and exploit unexpected trends Customer Retention The vast majority of medium to large enterprises collect data about their customers for the purposes of database marketing However only through the use of data mining can this data become useful information Through deep analysis of the purchasing patterns of past customers it is possible to develop a demographic model of those customers who can be expected to re purchase in the future By directing advertising funds only towards those customers an enterprise can increase return on investment ROI of the advertising budget and build long term client customer relationships Cross Selling Opportunities In addition to analysing data about previous customers enterprises can also data mine customer databases purchased from other organisations in the hope of identifying cross selling opportunities For example charity organisations such as Oxfam retain data about their members and contributors If another charity can get hold of that data it can be analysed to identify potential new contributors The possibilities are more diverse for commercial enterprises Databases of purchasers of personal computers and games can be a gold mine for the enterprises that develop software and games for those systems By analysing data and grouping customers by demographics such as age and gender it is possible to build highly targeted marketing databases of customers likely to purchase software and games from various genres shoot em ups for teens office software for students and adults and platform games for children of all ages The possibilities are endless Identify Market Trends Perhaps most importantly for enterprises developing new products is the data mining of economic and industry specific

    Original URL path: http://www.bestpricecomputers.co.uk/glossary/data-mining-software.htm (2016-02-08)
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  • Decision Support Systems Explained and Defined
    to store data in such a way as to allow for its querying and analysis by users Another example of a data driven DSS would be a Geographic Information System GIS which can be used to visually represent geographically dependant data using maps Document Driven DSS Document driven DSS are support systems designed to convert documents into valuable business data While data driven DSS rely on data that is already in a standardised format that lends itself to database storage and analysis document driven DSS makes use of data that cannot easily be standardised and stored The three primary forms of data used in document driven DSS are Oral i e transcribed conversations Written i e reports memos e mail and other correspondence Video i e TV commercials and news reports None of these formats lend themselves easily to standardised database storage and analysis so managers require DSS tools to convert them into data that can be valuable in the decision making process Document driven DSS is the newest field of study in Decision Support Systems Examples of document driven tools can be found in Internet search engines designed to sift through vast volumes of unsorted data through the use of keyword searches Knowledge Driven DSS Knowledge driven DSS are systems designed to recommend actions to users Typically knowledge driven systems are designed to sift through large volumes of data identify hidden patterns in that data and present recommendations based on those patterns Model Driven DSS Model driven support systems incorporate the ability to manipulate data to generate statistical and financial reports as well as simulation models to aid decision makers Model based decision support systems can be extremely useful in forecasting the effects of changes in business processes as they can use past data to answer complex what if

    Original URL path: http://www.bestpricecomputers.co.uk/glossary/decision-support-systems.htm (2016-02-08)
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web-archive-uk.com, 2016-10-29