ICT Professional Practice and Ethics 

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Westfield shopping center is working for digitalizing its business by considering the changing buying habits of the customers. The given case included that the firm has also collected information for making the shopping center technologically advanced.  For implementing information technology it is necessary for the companies to have appropriate and strict ethical standards for avoiding illegal or untrustworthy issues. With respect to this, the report has included IT governance framework for the analysis of the ethics and helping Westfield in implementing it properly for accomplishing the objectives.

However, the implementation of IT systems within the working environment is not an easy task. Sometimes, companies have to handle different challenges for digitalizing their business. With respect to this, different ethical challenges which Westfield can face while transforming its shopping center into the digital platform. Along with this, appropriate recommendations have also been suggested to the mall so that it can reduce the occurrence of challenges and can able to achieve its objective of digitalization of the business.    

INTRODUCTION

The process of implementing business policies and practices with respect to corporate governance, discrimination, corporate social responsibility and fiduciary responsibilities is called business ethics. In present time it is important for every organization to implement appropriate business ethics within their working environment. Especially, the companies using technologies for their processes and activities need to implement suitable business ethics. These will help in preventing information from unauthorized access and threat (Warren & Lucas, 2016). For the current file, given a case study of Westfield Shopping Center is taken into consideration. Aim of this report is to explain the ethical implications of digital innovation technology and to identify how competitive advantage can be maintained. The report includes an appropriate framework for the analysis of ethical and IT governance. Along with this, the study involves the assessment of the ethical consequences and recommendations.

ASSESSMENT TASK

Framework for analysis

The Westfield mall of Australia is featuring is 100,000 commodities online according to the demand of current time and customers. The reason behind this decision is changing buying behaviour of the shoppers which has created challenges for the Westfield Group. In order to improve the experiences of the shoppers, the Group has decided to link the digital shopper with the shopping centers. However, it is not an easy task for the Group to transform its entire shopping center digital. A proper framework for the analysis of the ethics or IT governance of Westfield Shopping Mall is as follows:

Define goals and objectives: In this, the shopping center will have to set its goals and objectives. It will include why the Westfield Group wants to digitalize its 100,000 products, what it wants to accomplish from this decision etc. According to the analysis, the objective behind the digitalization of products is to meet the changing the demands and purchasing behaviour of the customers. This strategy will also make mall to target digital shoppers leading to enhance sales and profit margin (McCabe, 2019).

Evaluation of the resources: In this, the group will evaluate the tools and resources it will require for meeting the decided objectives. A team for handling the digital operations will also be appointed by the Group. This team will determine if the present set of tools can offer the KPI’s and reports which they require for meeting the objectives effectively. The Group will also evaluate whether the selected team will able to work on the given work of IT or not. In case if the team is not appropriate for handling the new work then Group will hire new candidates having proper knowledge of IT, its different tools and many more (Einarsen et.al., 2017).

Planning the processes: The Company will plan for implementing the tools like computer system, centralized database, cloud system and many more which are necessary for making the mall online. After this, different processes with respect to the new transformation will be planned by the seniors of the Group. The different processes will include marketing of the online version of Westfield mall, maintaining the online website of the mall, making effective customer services and many more for providing a better experience to the customers. Apart from this, the Group will also work on implementing the necessary business ethics regarding ICT for avoiding any illegal or unauthorized activity. Some of the ethics will include preserving the privacy of the customers and employees, securing confidential information from threat, avoiding discrimination on the name of the race, etc and many more (Shafer, 2015).

Implementation of ethical governance

Code of Ethics will be implemented by the company within its working environment for avoiding any issue concerning the ICT. The Australian government has created the ACS Code of Ethics which are necessary for the IT firms to follow for avoiding any ethical dilemma or unethical behaviour within the working environment.  All of these values are as follows:

The primacy of the public interest: As per this, the company will keep the interest of its customers at the top priority level rather than its own. In order to survive within the current time, it is necessary for the shopping mall to keep the interests of its all stakeholders safe. This will also help in avoiding the issues related to duty and loyalty with the clients. In the present case, Westfield is bringing 100,000 products online due to the increasing interest of people towards online shopping rather than offline shopping (Spiekermann, 2015).

Enhancement of the Quality of Life: Implementation of ICT leads to impact the society and living standards of the people. There are both positive and negative results of using ICT, all depends upon the way companies are using them. With respect to Westfield, it is essential for it to follow appropriate ethical approaches for avoiding any negative impact of using ICT such as loss of personal information of customers. Proper discussion between the team members and their manager can result to improve the working conditions. Implementation of the appropriate security measures such as firewall, anti-virus, etc can also help firm in securing the confidential information (Gregory et al., 2018).

Honesty: The major purpose behind digitalizing the business of shopping mall is meeting the needs of the customers. In context to this, the workers of the firms should work with honesty and fairness for avoiding breaking the trust of their clients. Offering manipulated information about the products, their quality and usage can affect the trust of the customers leading to affect the overall business (De Haes & Van Grembergen, 2015).

Competence: The top management should develop the team by selecting the employees who are expert in the selected area of work such as IT, marketing, budgeting and many more. However, it is also necessary for the seniors to the aware team about their limitations so that they can work with honesty by following the ethical standards and legislation.

Professional Development: Westfield Group will provide proper time to the new team for understanding their work and responsibilities.  The given time will make the team to identify whether they need to develop new skills or gain knowledge for meeting the objectives or not. In case the requirement of development will be identified then the group will conduct training sessions (Tonelli et.al, 2017).

Professionalism: The team members will be treated with respect and dignity within the firm regardless of their kind of work. Ethical behaviour without any discrimination will enhance the interaction among the team leading to meet the objectives.

 Documentation: All the planned processes, implemented Code of Ethics and many more will be documented by the team in a proper manner. Proper documentation will help in executing the processes and ethical standards effectively without affecting the customer’s expectations. The documentation of the governance model i.e. ACS Code of Ethics will help Westfield in gaining the trust of the clients and resolving their issues related to any illegal or fraud (Muller, 2017).

            Thus, implementation of the above steps will help Westfield Shopping mall of Australia to move towards digitalization effectively by considering all ethics properly.

Ethical consequences

As per the given case scenario, Westfield mall is working for moving towards the digitalization by considering the present demand among the individuals. The searchable mall web platform will result to enhance the shopping experiences of the customers. In context to this, the company is working for developing Wi-Fi networks within the mall, mobile food service app and frictionless car parking payment services. All these services will provide customers with a new experience of shopping products from the shopping center. However, it will not an easy task for the mall to implement all these services effectively. There are chances that Westfield Group of Australia can face some IT Governance issues which can affect their work processes and financial budget. It is necessary for the mall to understand these problems for identifying their appropriate solutions and meeting their objectives (Vunk, Mayer & Matulevičius, 2017). The IT governance issues which Westfield Group can face while moving towards the digitalization on diversity and inclusion are described below:

Resistance to Change: Westfield is working on offline aspects and due to this, workers are addicted to this physical environment. Implementation of digital technologies such as a mobile app for food services, frictionless car parking payment services and many more will affect the confidence of the employees. Transformation of the shopping center to the digital world can develop insecurities among the staff members with respect to their job, salary, position and many more. This resistance to the change can work as a barrier for the top management leading to affect the processes and procedures. Along with this, the change can also affect the ethical working environment which will not be good for the company’s growth and development. It will be challenging for the shopping mall to convince its workers to accept the change by maintaining ethics and morale (Rubino, Vitolla & Garzoni, 2017).    

The risk to privacy and security: Digitalizing the shopping mall will result to make it online. The company will have to transfer its all data related to employees, customers, etc to the online database. It will be a challenging task for the organization to collect, manage and transfer the data as a small mistake can result in a big loss. Along with this, unreliable or untrustworthy people of the shopping mall can take advantages of this situation by stealing important information. It is necessary for Westfield to implement all the processes with proper safety otherwise it can face the risk of violating the rights of privacy of customers and other individuals (Wagner & Meshtaf, 2016).

Digitalization of Shopping center can result to affect the privacy of the information. The employees who are less reliable can get unauthorized access to the other’s system for getting confidential details for their personal benefits or professional. It is necessary for the shopping center to implement proper security measures otherwise it can face huge losses regarding the economic state and market position as well. The leak of information related to customers can make an unreliable person to break them or leak of information related to the business strategies, innovative ideas, future planning and many more can help competitors to get benefits of it. In both the situation there is a negative impact of unauthorized access on the growth and development of the Westfield Shopping Center of Australia (García-Sánchez, Rodríguez-Domínguez & Frías-Aceituno, 2015).

Value Delivery through IT: Digitalization increases the threat of cyber attacks which affects the value and quality of delivering products and services. Digitalization of the shopping mall will increase the chances of cyber attacks such as Denial of Services, Man in the Middle, Hacking and many more leading to affect the brand image in the market. It will be a challenging task for the Westfield Group to deliver high-quality services to their customers by avoiding any attack or fear of losing confidential information. Apart from this, issues within the implemented technologies can also affect the quality of work processes and services. Any problem within the server can result to affect the shopping process of the shoppers resulting in their dissatisfaction. Along with this, long waiting time, server down, etc issues related to IT can also affect the satisfaction level of the clients. It will be challenging for Westfield to deal will all these problems and delivering high-quality services and products to the customers (Sigurjonsson et.al, 2015).

Cloud Computing:  There are chances that Westfield Mall uses the latest and most popular technology of cloud computing. Use of Cloud computing for storing important and sensitive information can be challenging for the company. There are ways through which hackers can hack the system of cloud service providers and can get information about their customers from there. The competitors of the firm can also conduct unethical acts for getting access to the confidential information of the mall and to decrease their number of customers. Hackers can also hack information when employees share information related to their projects or work activities (Jackson, 2015).

Gaining Trust of the customers:  It is difficult for most of the people to trust the online shopping system or digitalized ways due to lack of information and fear of fraud. The shopping center can face an issue in bringing trust among the clients for purchasing the products from the online channel and having less trust in the online transactions. Along with this, there are chances that the shopping center may lose some of the clients due to digitalization. It will be difficult for the company to gain the trust of their clients and make them purchase the products online and use the new digitalized services (Leicester, 2016).

Thus, all the above challenges can affect the market position and present growth of the shopping center. Digitalization of the shopping center needs to be effective, properly planned and properly assessed for avoiding any mistake leading to affect the privacy, security and trust of the customers and employees. Along with implementing technologies, it is necessary for the shopping center to implement relevant ethics and policies for maintaining the disciple and ethical environment of the organization.

Recommendations

It is necessary for the management of the Westfield Shopping Center to follow some of the effective measures for avoiding any issue related to IT governance. There are some of the suggestions which the management of the shopping center needs to follow or implement for successful transformation into the online business and digitalized services. These recommendations are described below:

Appropriate security measures: The management of the shopping center needs to understand the significance of security measures in the IT world. The management will have to identify the most appropriate security aspects which can prevent activities such as hacking, data leakage etc. In order to digitalization, the firm will have to implement anti-virus and strong firewall for avoiding cyber attacks related to malware or different viruses. Along with this, the company will have to provide a unique ID and password to each employee for their personal system so that no one can access other’s system without their permission or without their presence. Apart from this, the shopping center will have to use encryption, password on Wi-Fi network, VPN and many other concepts for keeping the online system secure and avoiding loss of confidential information (Burmeister, 2017).

Training to the employees: The Company will have to provide training to their workers for informing them about the importance of IT and developing skills for operating the new techniques effectively. Proper training to the employees will help them in accepting the change and using the new technologies effectively (Warren & Lucas, 2016).

Secure online payment system: The firm will have to keep its online payment system secure so that customers can use them. The shopping centre will have to provide proper instructions on the website so that clients can follow them properly while using it. These things will minimize the chances of losing money while conducting online transactions. In addition to it, the company should have fast customer service so that people can contact them while facing any issue like transaction issue.   These factors will make Westfield gain the trust of the users and make them use the online website effectively without any fear or issue (McDermid, 2015).

Use of effective cloud computing solutions: In order to use cloud computing technology, the shopping centre will have to select the best solutions which offer proper security features. The cloud computing solution should have crypto feature, AES encryption, premium safety measures and many more for preventing the stored information from various cyber-attacks (Warren & Burmeister, 2017).

Implementation of ethical standards: the Australian government has developed a Code of Ethics which are necessary for the companies to follow for avoiding any issue related to the IT systems. These ethics have been described above. With the help of these codes of ethics, the shopping centre will able to develop transparency, integrity, honesty and commitment among the staff members. These ethics will prevent employees to do anything unauthorized or illegal which can affect their professional life. The firm will have to implement necessary laws and regulations which are created by the Australian government for preserving the rights of the customers and employees both. With the help of laws related to the privacy of the information, health and safety, etc the shopping centre will able to develop ethical and disciplined working environment (Warren & Burmeister, 2019).  

CONCLUSION

It is concluded from the above study that Westfield is working for transforming its business to digitalization. The shopping centre is creating is an online website for selling up to 100,000 products to online shoppers. The firm is planning to provide high shopping experiences for the people visiting the shopping mall by offering them digitalized services. But before the implementation of all these ideas, it is necessary for the company to have a proper framework related to IT governance or ethics. With the help of a proper governance framework and ACS Code of ethics, the shopping centre will able to implement all its innovative ideas effectively and successfully. However, there are some IT governance challenges or issues which Westfield shopping centre of Australia can face such as losing information, losing the trust of the customers, unauthorized access to the system and many more. It is necessary for the firm to handle all these issues properly for avoiding any failure or mistake. There are some recommendations provided with the help of which Westfield shopping mall can accomplish its objective. Some of the suggestions are the implementation of appropriate safety measures, making online payment secure, training etc. All these aspects will help the shopping centre to implement its innovative and technological ideas successfully along with developing ethical working culture.

 

REFERENCES

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