Net centric concept is generally when users in an environment depend upon common services and applications. They access their applications and services or carrying out their business activities through a shares platform, usually the web or an intranet/ extranet. In this way the company is able to use limited resources in an optimized form while reducing their costs. IN the net centric environment the technology goes from an application centric orientation to data centric orientation.
“The underlying principle behind NCC is a distributed environment where applications and data are downloaded from network servers as needed. This is in stark contrast to the current use of powerful personal computers (PCs) that rely primarily on local resources. In some respects, NCC resembles an earlier computing era of mainframes and dumb terminals. However, there are important differences. NCC relies on portable applications that run on multiple architectures (“write once, run anywhere”), high bandwidth (for downloading applications on demand), and low-cost thin clients such as the NC, the NetPC, and Windows-based terminals (WBT).” (Tilley, 1998)
Most examples concerning the use of Network centric software and network centric environments have been in the military and arms sector. One example has that been of Finland, “Finland is planning to spend 20% of its defense-procurement budget on network-centric warfare and intelligence-gathering projects by 2012, according to the country’s defense chief, Adm. Juhani Kaskeala. The country has ambitious plans to create a network linking military and civilian agencies, allowing government leaders to manage effectively any military or terrorist threat or to deal with the aftermath of natural disasters.” (Ripley, 2005)
Most of the technological problems faced by management in a company do not relate to technology at all. In fact they are consistency and communications problems in the company itself and can be solved by using net centric technologies.
As mentioned in Robertson’s article, the main problems faced by any company when using computing technologies refer to disparate information systems, integration required between systems, no clearest strategy for the technology environment
Inconsistency of data between the departments can be reduced by employing data sharing networks as well as half-hearted support of the management for the use of computing technology. The most prominent problem faced by the management in the long tern as well as in the short term relate to the fact that there are no set values for technology orientation in the company.
In order to solve the problems relating to inconsistency and disparity in data and software usage as well as their updates, the net centric orientation in the company will also the users to use the system just as before but without resulting in subsequent disparities and inconstancies, The process of upgrading, updating and synchronization of data will be automated and will have to take place at only one end as the data is shared and stored in one large data repository.
The problem of resolving the problems relating to the disparity and incongruity in the information systems being used can be avoided by buying the software solutions form a well-known solution provider so that the systems are compatible with each other and only vendor has to be coordinated with for management purposes.
Aside from this the company would also have to adopt a technology-oriented culture with a focus at implementing business process reengineering if required. The technology orientation at the company cannot be successful if the management is not supporting the strategic shift. Therefore their long term commitment to the new culture adoption is also required.
Using net centric systems and computing techniques, the employees in the organization are able to communicate their ideas and their input to each other as well as share data and information. This helps in clear understanding of the work practices and efficient flow of data in the organization. Companies can invest in identifying the main message for their strategies and communicating it to their employees as well as their stakeholders.
A net centric environment effects the users, in such a way that thy do not have to synchronize and constantly update their PC’s. The disadvantage that they face is that the by making the PCs and the application accessible to the general employees in the company, and the employees are unable to personalize the applications and desktops which might take away some sense of entitlement from them. The developers are able to increase their customer base with their codes available at different platforms. Similarly the administrators also are at an advantage as there is potential reduction in the cost of updating and managing soft wares and applications.
Other effects that a net centric environment has on the company include introducing a new way of thinking and conducting business as well as [providing a manageable virtual platform for people to share information and increase communication in the company.
Robertson, R., (2005), 10 Principles of Effective Information Management, available at: http://www.steptwo.com.au/papers/kmc_effectiveim/index.html
Ripley, T., (2005), On The Net, Aviation Week ; Space Technology, Vol. 163 Issue 19, Special section p6-6, available at: http://web.ebscohost.com/bsi/detail?vid=1;hid=12;sid=316dbaed-6d8f-4be4-9785-929ac30ecbb3%40sessionmgr8
Comfort, L. K., (1993), Integrating Information Technology into International Crisis Management and Policy, Journal of Contingencies ; Crisis Management, Vol. 1 Issue 1, p15, available at: http://web.ebscohost.com/bsi/pdf?vid=2;hid=12;sid=09035e6d-2020-4e6f-8c2b-ca438ab04660%40sessionmgr3
Tilley, S., (1998),The Era of Net-Centric Computing, SEI Interactive, available at: http://www.sei.cmu.edu/news-at-sei/columns/net-effects/1998/Net_Centric.jun98.pdf