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Burgelman et al.’s defines Technology as the knowhow and expertise that is instrumental towards achieving development and production of goods and services, as well as their conveyance to the intended markets (4). This essay elaborates technology in terms of disruptiveness, global economy, management, prototyping, and integrated product development.
Disruptive Technologies, Innovations, and Mishaps
There are technologies that, while they have facilitated efficiency in production of goods and services, they have also caused disruptions as side effects. Two major examples of disruptive technologies are the internet and nuclear energy.
Innovation of the internet has changed life remarkably since its inception. In modern times, the internet has touched every area of life. Tech businesses have sprung up and positively contributed to the economic and social development.
One recent application of the internet is it application on high frequency trading in stocks and shares. While faults in the systems have led to unintended execution of transactions, which have cost the companies and investors lots of money, the financial institutions have resorted to acquisition of more powerful computers in an attempt to outdo each other. The more honest traditional mechanism has been lost. This has led to collapse of banks, businesses, and foreign economies.
The internet has also been allegedly used to steal technology and business secrets of other nations. The United States has complained about the alleged china’s theft of its technology and business and state secrets, an act that has been facilitated by technology.
Another form that has entered the scene is nuclear technology and its application to energy production. The capability of nuclear weapons as was seen in world war two is tremendous. Countries have developed them to measure up to other countries’ military prowess. While they have maintained peace in terms of “mutually assured destruction,” countries like north Korea continue to use to engage the world according to its own views and agendas.
Nuclear power plants have generated clean energy for the countries with the technology and financial capability to set them up, and they have had mishaps. There have been accidents of nuclear power plants that this has disrupted the ecosystem and even cost human lives.
The Global Economy and What it Means to Technology Management
Global economy refers to the dispersion of the capitalist system across international boundaries with minimized deterrence by governments. Besides transfer of goods and services, if facilitates mobility of technology, among other factors of production.
The global economy has influenced technology management in several ways. One way to get ahead would be to implement technology management. This seems to be the only variable in the equation as far as adjusting the technology element of the economy is concerned.
Technology management entails the measures focused on the technological fundamentals by an organization with the aim of being more competitive than its rivals are. This is done in terms of strategy, roadmap, forecasting, and project portfolio.
The intertwining of world economies has translated to the management of factors of production, technology being among them, to gain a competitive age in the international markets. Companies have had to invent and manipulate technology to accomplish this. One example of this is the recent adoption of high frequency trading in stocks and shares, which affects international investment, markets, and commodity prices. These rich investment firms have resorted to getting ahead of each other in terms of better computers and software.
The New Management Techniques
Different companies, institutions or organizations will deploy different approaches to management depending on their portfolio and other factors that are specific to them. These varied avenues are called managerial techniques.
“Managerial techniques are the systematic and analytical methods used by managers to assist in decision making, the improvement of efficiency and effectiveness and, in particular, the conduct of the two key managerial activities of planning and control” Armstrong (3).
One of the team management techniques is the application of the relevant skills to the administration and coordination of a number of individual with the aim of accomplishing a task that requires combined efforts. An example at our disposal would be coaching of a football team.
Concurrent engineering is a method in which the different stages of product development and designed are executed simultaneously rather than in succession. It lowers costs by cutting down production time and time spent on conveyance to the market. The technique is cost effective.
The stage gate technique of management entails subdividing an initiative or a project into phases, separating each phase by a gate. It simplifies the process, and costs and fiscal analysis are incorporated, the feasibility of the undertaking can be easily verified. However, it can hinder innovation.
In Chua et al.’s words, a prototype is “an approximation of a product (or system) or its components in some for a definite purpose in its implementation” (2). The prototype can be physical or abstract; a rough or fine mimicry of the product or entire products or its components. Rapid prototyping refers to a quick implementation of prototyping using 3D printing technology.
Rapid prototyping has made production easier. One benefit is that one can model a physical object and test it in a short period before its production. This saves both time and the production cost that would have been incurred if the product had been produced and it turned out faulty. Designers can also make the parts more complex within stipulated time and little cost. The final products suits customer needs and taste as customer response can be implemented relatively fast. Market competiveness is improved.
Given that 3D technology is at its infancy, potential advancement are projected to make things even better. The downside is that access to the technology in full is limited to advanced countries.
Integrated Product Development
Integrated product development is the bringing together of different specialties with the aim of developing a new product. It has, in most cases, involved students of engineering, business and architecture as well as art. It is an experimental stage but so far and the results predict success.
Excellent teamwork is a key element in the implementation of this concept. The end product is oriented to customer needs in as requires, and even services search as marketing and delivery are seen to by the business element of the team.
Production of goods and services is dependent on technology and managerial techniques applied, as far as time saving and minimization of costs is concerned. The appropriate technology management, and the right technology, or, in some cases, adoption of a more advanced or new technology, will improve the production of goods and services in terms of time, cost, and market competitiveness. However, other technologies come with side effects that have caused social harm. Technology and management play an instrumental part.
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