study for Assignment 2
Note, for the purposes of this assignment you are not
required to undertake any further research into the situation described in
this case study.
Walgreens Boots Alliance IT network taking shape
BT announced today that it has now connected the first sites
as part of its wide scale IT network upgrade for Walgreens Boots Alliance’s
The newly connected sites in the UK and Norway represent
one of the initial steps in the heath & beauty retailer’s IT
transformation programme, and the move is expected to improve the reliability
and performance of multiple business systems and applications.
Walgreens and BT recently signed a five-year IT
partnership, under which BT is upgrading and expanding the IT infrastructure
for many facets of the group, including wholesaler Alliance Healthcare and
high street retail business Boots. As part of the arrangement, BT will work
with Walgreens Boots Alliance to develop and introduce new digital
technologies across its operations which are aimed at boosting employee
productivity, improving customer service and fostering innovation.
Once completed, the new BT-managed IT network will serve
around 3,500 Boots locations and Alliance Healthcare wholesale and
distribution sites across Europe and Thailand.
Erwin van Vroenhoven, vice president, global IT shared
services at Walgreens Boots Alliance, commented: ‘Digital innovation is a key
area of investment for our company.
‘Our new IT platform, provided by BT, will help us to
further improve the customer experience and our colleagues’ productivity,
while enabling us to provide innovative services that will help us continue
to meet our customers’ ever changing health and beauty needs.’
Connectivity will be provided into Walgreens Boots
Alliance’s own data centres and those operated by third parties hosting the
company’s business applications and data. Utilising BT’s so-called ‘Cloud of
Clouds’ approach to IT, the retailer hopes to gain more control over the
performance of its cloud-based applications regardless of where they are
hosted, as well as certain security benefits.
BT will also deploy a range of different network access
technologies for Boots’ flagship stores in the UK, with these stores set to
receive dedicated fibre Ethernet services while other stores will use
‘Ethernet in the First Mile’, superfast broadband and copper-based broadband
solutions. These technologies are expected to give stores the bandwidth they
require for day-to-day operations and the capacity needed to manage peaks in
business demand, such as in the build-up to Christmas and new year.
Emer Timmons, president, strategic deals and customer
engagement, BT Global Services, remarked: ‘Our new agreement with Walgreens
Boots Alliance is built on our world class service delivery, global reach and
a shared appetite for innovation. We will provide seamless connectivity to
underpin almost every part of the business, from delivering great retail
customer experiences to enabling knowledge sharing and collaboration for new
Last summer, BT revealed that it had signed up electricals
and mobile retailer Dixons Carphone on a five-year network infrastructure
As the project rolls out, BT’s network will carry all of
the retailer’s voice and data traffic, supporting its 1,200 stores, offices,
data centres, contact centres and supply chain operations across the UK. The
arrangement also entails in-store Wi-Fi support, in light of the retailer’s
growing reliability on a connected customer service throughout its shops.
(Source: Stillitoe, B. (2016) ‘New Walgreens Boots Alliance IT network taking
shape’, Essential Retail, 22 Feb [Online]. Accessed 2 September 2016.)
End of Case Study
Questions (20 marks in total)
1. Consider the IT system described in the case study as a
sociotechnical system. Map out the elements of the system using the approach
in Activity 1.2 of Block 2 Part 1, by:
i. drawing a
systems map (6 marks)
ii. developing the
systems map into a diagram showing the three components of Technology,
Organisation and People. (4 marks)
For each diagram, explain your rationale for the way you
have drawn the diagram, for the elements you have included and excluded, and
describe the insights you have gained about the system from drawing the
diagram (7 marks in total: 6% + 1% for quality of English).
2. In about 150 words, suggest and describe at least three
issues of power between at least three of the key stakeholders in this IT
system. (3 marks in total: 2% + 1% for quality of English)
To reiterate, your answers to the two questions combined
should total no more than 1,000 words, plus in addition there should be two
This is an individual coursework.
Please ensure that your student id is
given on the first page. Ideally your student id should also be in the header
or footer of all subsequent pages.
Providing page numbers in the header or
footer of all pages is also helpful.
Please submit your coursework as a single
MS Word file as this makes providing feedback easier. Use of the Calibri Body
or Arial font, and a fontsize of 12 are recommended.
Use Harvard style referencing where
appropriate, however note that referencing is not expected to be required for
All submissions must be online within the
CSD3510 module area within My Learning. The submission point will link to Turnitin. A Turnitin report will be
generated, which you should examine to check for plagiarism. The Turnitin
score should be less than 20%, however this is just a rough guide. You should
look at exactly what has been flagged up and use your judgment as to whether
it matters (sometimes Turnitin flags things that are not a problem).
As mentioned earlier, you can resubmit
your assignment using the submission point as many times as you wish until
the deadline. However note that generation of the Turnitin reports will be
delayed after the first submission and only be generated after 24 hours. The
submission on My Learning at the times of the deadline will be taken as your
Also please remember to check that you
receive an online receipt for your submissions – it will be sent to your
University email address.