Uploaded by Lincoln Crisler

Crisler IS 525 Wk2

CPS Business Assessment
Lincoln Crisler
Grantham University
Professor Simpson
When my wife and I started the company, we offered a wide range of services, to
include in-person telephony and networking solutions, web design and administrative tasks.
As our work proceeded, we tended to focus more on a few areas, since that’s where the work
was found most often, and got farther away from a model where we had to interact with
clients in-person or even be in the same state as them.
Document Creation
Using the as-is/to-be approach, our method for supporting clients with document
creation evolved somewhat from the start of CPS to what it was at the end. Our initial
concept was to find clients locally, because it was easier to build rapport, trust, relationships,
etc. with a customer that way. They knew us, or we could give them a reference they’d
recognize, or they were even referred to us by another client they knew. The first time we did
this, we had to pick up the documents the client already had—the packet she had used to get
her home health care business certified in Georgia—and prepare it for use in South Carolina.
However, she didn’t have the original digital files. Luckily, I was able to use my tech
genius to streamline things a bit. We scanned everything in, and I used Optical Character
Recognition (OCR) software to do most of the work. We still had to proof each page and fix
things, because OCR wasn’t all that great eight years ago, and our client deserved perfection.
We then had to provide her with physical media containing the files as well as email them to
her, and return the original material, which meant another real-time visit to her location.
What we worked toward after that was a digital-only process, which was easier to
negotiate as we expanded our client base. A later project was assisting a professional life
coach and public speaker in self-publishing a self-help book he’d written. He didn’t live in
the state, and of course wrote his book on a computer so had the digital media. He sent me
the manuscript, I edited it with “track changes” turned on in MS Office, and formatted the
manuscript for publication after he blessed off on the edits, using a template I’d used
previously for one of my own books. While all this was going on, I had outsourced the cover
design and illustration to an artist I’d worked with previously, and she emailed me mock-ups
for the client’s approval. She also lived an entire state away from me, so the work was all
This was a better way for CPS to work because it allowed us to expand our customer
base, deliver the product or drafts quicker, and no one had the only copy of anything. Not
only that, but I spent about a week of work time on editing and formatting the manuscript,
compared to at least a month on the health care licensing project.
Collecting Payment/Utilizing Funds
We handled this process using more of a re-engineering approach. Initially, clients
paid with a variety of methods, some of which came with problems. Notably, a few local
folks wanted to pay with checks. They always cleared, and our clients were generally
honorable folk, but it still meant we had to set up a local bank account. Being military, we
hadn’t bothered with this for the past seven years we’d been together, and now we had to do
it just for this. For a good portion of the time we ran CPS, it was my wife’s main way of
contributing to the household—and of course, there were times when we need to do
something with $500, but her $300 and my $200 were in two separate accounts, for example.
Something needed to be done to streamline the process.
What we settled on was a Paypal business account. This solved a few problems for us.
First, virtual clients could pay us online and immediately. Second, local clients could also do
that, but the account came with the added benefit of a credit card reader that plugged into our
phones, so if they weren’t tech savvy, I could at least handle their business the same way
Walmart would. Third, when we needed to spend that money on bills, food, things for the
business, etc. the account came with debit cards for my wife and I that work just like any
other. And of course, these things might be the norm now, but as recently as ten years ago
they were innovative—as was running a virtual assistant company, come to think of it.
Finally, something like Paypal could go with us anywhere, unlike a local bank account.
Baltzan, Paige. Information Systems. 4th ed. New York: McGraw-Hill/Irwin, 2017.
Hammer, M., Champy, J. Reengineering the Corporation: A Manifesto for Business
Revolution. Harper Business, New York, 1993