Information Technology for Organized Labor
Communication plays a vital role in the maintenance of relations in the labour process. Recent technological developments, such as the invention of smartphones and other wireless technologies, have significantly revolutionized communication with a wide range of implications. The primacy of effective communication in labour unions cannot be overlooked; therefore, they could leverage the presence of new communication technologies to increase the effectiveness of their interface with their employees. New types of information technology have a wide range of implications, both positive and negative, to organized labour and organizations can leverage the positive implications to improve their operations while avoiding the negative implications.
The development of mobile technologies has increased the convenience with which communication is conducted in organized labour. New types of information technology have offered labour unions different communication platforms that allow the real-time exchange of information among various parties. The presence of mobile technologies in labour unions saves significant amounts of time that could be wasted in traditional communication channels as parties wait for a response from the other side. Convenience is also boosted in organized labour by the adoption of new information technologies by preventing the distortion of information during transmission (Holley, Wolters & Ross, 2016). The communicating parties on modern information technologies are safe from manipulation of information during the communication process, unlike in traditional communication methods such as oral tradition. The convenience is also identifiable in the aspect of maintaining the communication trails for future reference. Modern information technology allows back up and storage for information in the cloud; the fact that presents organized labour with a reliable point of reference in the future. Any future requirement for historical communications is easily retrieved from the databases. Mobile convenience is also identifiable in labour organizations as a result of new information technologies (Holley, Wolters & Ross, 2016). Mobile communication devices, such as tablets, phones, and laptops, are easily portable, thus increasing the ease with which labour organizations can communicate with their employees conveniently at any time.
The development of new types of information technology offers multiple potent communication tools that allow two-way information exchange between labour organizations, their employees, and other external stakeholders. The presence of communication devices such as mobile phones will enable people in organizations to give and receive information concurrently, unlike in traditional communication tools, such as radio calls and posts (Heshmati & Peng, 2010). Two-way communication also serves as a firm basis for the establishment of an organizational environment characterized by democracy since the people can share their thoughts and ideological opinions despite the nature of the organizational structure that exists. Therefore, two-way communication serves as a potent tool for the improvement of relationships across the organizational structure. The use of two-way communication in organizations also increases the ability of the message sender to control their message content without external interference or manipulation. Two-way communication serves as a powerful tool for breaking the bureaucratic red tape within organizations, thus contributing to increased operational efficiency (Heshmati & Peng, 2010). Moreover, it offers a fast and cost-effective communication method for organized labour.
The approach also enhances consistency because it serves as an encouragement for employees to understand and appreciate that the organizations value their ideas and opinions. Therefore, the use of modern information technology methods for communication enhances the level and impact of employee engagement within organizations, thus increasing the chances of improved organizational performance (Holley, Wolters & Ross, 2016). Two-way communication can also serve as an effective tool for problem-solving within organizations since the employees can share their issues conveniently with the management for timely and feasible solutions. For example, Tesco launched a two-way communication platform named “listen and fix” in 2012 to enable its employees to share the different problems and issues they faced, and the management acted on their responses (Tesco Plc., 2012). The subsequent outcome for the implementation of the approach was improved organizational performance per store. Therefore, the use of two-way communication at Tesco improves organizational performance through increased employee engagement.
The use of modern communication technologies by organizations serves as a significant source of cost-saving and improves the safety of organizational information significantly compared to traditional communication infrastructure. For instance, the use of cloud computing and cloud-based information storage facilities has been highlighted as a more cost-effective method compared to the use of organization-owned storage devices. Organizations no longer require acquiring, installing, or maintaining costly communication and information storage devices within their premises (Abdurrahman, Langi & Simatupang, 2018). Instead, they can hire space in the cloud to facilitate their operations at affordable costs. The approach also increases the safety and privacy with which organizational information is handled. Modern information technology entails dynamic information security tools that prevent malicious attackers from accessing such content. Corporate data is also safe from loss due to other events such as fire accidents within the organizations. Organizations can, therefore, divert the funds that could be consumed in setting up and maintaining the storage facilities within their premises to other initiatives or projects that could boost their revenues and profitability. Increased information safety within organizations as a result of using modern information technology also increases the confidentiality of organizational content. Overall, organizations utilizing the new types of information technology have an excellent opportunity to save significantly (financially) and achieve heightened safety for critical corporate information.
Organizations have also exploited modern information technology tools to achieve improved product and service quality as well as customer experiences. The use of modern information technology has enabled organizations to gather real-time and comprehensive responses from their customers in different market segments. Such information has been of significant importance to the management teams in various organizations as they utilize it to improve their services and products to meet the tastes and preferences of the clients (Law, Leung & Buhalis, 2009). Moreover, modern information technology offers an interactive forum for organizations and their clients, through which they can exchange valuable information that can be utilized to develop competitive organizational advantages through improved customer service and quality. For example, Amazon leverages the advent of big data to study the consumer online buying habits as a strategic approach to ensuring that they offer the most appropriate and demanded goods and services (Weise, 2019). Therefore, the approach boosts the targeting capabilities of most e-commerce establishments by highlighting any identifiable shopping behaviours of their clients online and increases their chances of improving their product quality and customer satisfaction.
The application of modern information technologies may also subject an organization to massive challenges, primarily if not correctly utilized. For instance, the techniques have been associated with extensive unethical practices such as hacking, whereby organizations have lost vast amounts of money and reputation. The technologies could also be too costly for small organizations, thus delineating any potential benefits associated with their use (Delaney & D’Agostino, 2015). The technologies involve substantial costs from acquisition and training employees on their use.
The advent of new types of information technology is associated with a wide range of implications, both positive and negative. Organizations are, therefore, left with the option of weighing the potential benefits and costs of applying modern technologies in their operations and make the appropriate decisions. The adoption of modern information technology can be attributed to improved operational efficiency, cost saving, improvement of data safety, and improved service and product quality. The same developments may also breed massive organizational challenges, such as data breaches and cost ineffectiveness. Labour unions should, however, embrace the use of new information technology because its benefits exceed any potential costs and risks.