OFFICE OPERATION AUTOMATION INSTRUMENTATION
As a result of mastering the materials of this chapter, students should:
- approaches to the classification of modern offices and information procedures implemented in them;
- the features and modes of the MS Outlook organizer;
- the capabilities of domestic and foreign electronic document management systems
be able to
- choose the option of office technology, taking into account the specific features of the institution;
- choose the mode of using the software application based on the type of management task;
- to compare the capabilities of electronic document management systems of different manufacturers;
- the skills of creating and maintaining address books, preparing and sending electronic messages, creating schedules planned for the foreseeable future.
Office as part of a business process management system
In recent decades, in management practice, the terms office and office activities & quot ;. The office in the literature is often viewed from two sides: as some materially existing institution, in which customers-customers address their information requests, or as a means of ensuring the functioning of the organizational structure of business process management, because the information that appears in it is intended for customer destinations.
In the first case, for ordinary citizens, the office is perceived as a certain room with a staff of employees, means for converting information, with a list of services provided and tariffs and the services provided.
The main social function of office employees is to provide the client with the right information at the right time. Because of this, the employee's operational work consists of clarifying the essence of the client's request (most often, reading the document), preparing documents (or verbal answers) to clients, communicating with other office employees and clients.
The office can be an independent institution, act as an integral part of a larger organizational structure, or be an information-management element of the management system of an object of production or service.
Taking into account that in the general case, solutions are created in the office that have value for the client, the office can rightfully be regarded as a specific information enterprise that converts information resources into information products. Naturally, the semantics of the processed information imposes an imprint on the so-called production activity of employees (office activities). Therefore, the internal activities of such now widespread institutions, as brokerage, notary and realtor offices; consulting, audit and insurance companies; departments of booking tickets, accommodation in hotels, providing reference services; banking institutions, has its own specifics. Other factors influence the organization of work of offices: the size of the premises, the number of employees, the variety of services provided, the composition of the available technical information and switching facilities and the technology of their use, and much more.
However, the unifying feature of such offices is the information nature of their activities. Regardless of the type of service provided by the office, it is based on the implementation of an information request coming to the performer from the client. This request can arrive at the office in various forms (oral direct treatment or remotely via a communication channel, issued on paper or computer media). Given that the current practice of implementing incoming requests is based on the analysis of the semantic content of requests and the search for information that is necessary for an answer, the organization of an optimal information storage system in the office is one of the most urgent and urgent tasks. In some cases, the main stored information unit is a real object (paper document, photograph, map, etc.); in others - a document in the form of its technical or electronic counterpart. Hence different conditions and technical means of storing and searching information items (from elementary folders and card files to the most modern computer databases).
The combination of many factors of office activity allows you to subdivide the office into three types: traditional office, production office, electronic office.
Office traditional type is a relatively small (in terms of area and number of employees) institution with a fairly small list of work performed (services to customers); with a constant assessment of the situation, rapid intra-office communication, a fairly limited range of the technical means used to transform information. Typical examples are groups of accommodation in hotels, ticket booking offices, travel packages, etc.
The production office is characterized by formalization and large volumes of the same type of work, assigning functions and assigning them to specific employees, organizing work on a flow basis. Offices of this type are effective for archival activities, offices of large organizations and government bodies, publishing institutions, etc. Typical operations in such an office are the reception of documented information, processing and storage of documents, preparation and printing of replies, duplication and distribution of documents, etc.
In the offices of electronic type, the concept of an integrated application of computing and communication technology is realized using the advantages of traditional and production offices. In electronic offices, employees' activities are focused on the use of database systems; the combination of electronic and verbal communication; use of e-mail; management of personal time of employees and control of the performance discipline; preparation and printing of business letters; joint work on documents; integration of software, etc. The electronic office thanks to e-mail and the use of personal computers provides the opportunity for direct interaction between employees and customers, without requiring their physical location within the same premises, and also increases the efficiency of the creative work of the performers, including when processing huge arrays of information.
Office activities of employees, being purely informational, includes such functionally complete complexes as:
• maintenance of input information flows of different volume and semantic content;
• preparing and documenting customer requests;
• Planning and monitoring the performance of production tasks;
• Organization of workflow;
• making decisions at different levels;
• use of technical and software tools that automate information processes.
The technical component of supporting office automation depends on many factors, including the type of information and the specifics of information processes; volume and regularity of inquiries from clients; volume and type of execution of documents issued to customers; the urgency of fulfilling requests and rendering services; financial position of the office, etc. The technical means of office activities include computers (servers, workstations, laptops); means of communication and information transfer (faxes, telephones with answering machines, scoreboards); means copying and duplicating equipment and processing of documents, etc.
The use of computer and communication equipment imposes special requirements for the selection of software products: local and network; universal and specialized; processing, utilities and information protection tools; domestic developers and foreign companies, etc. In the literature, it is not uncommon for software tools of general purpose, focused on the implementation of office information tasks, called "electronic offices". In the next paragraph, we consider a software application that is part of MS Office 2010.
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