Management Information System MIS 201 Semester 1 (2017-2018) Assignment Details Prepare an in-depth analysis of four case studies during the semester. Here are some guidelines: This is an individual assessment, which is a part from your course score. It requires effort and critical thinking Answer all the questions listed below for each case. The ‘answers’ to the questions are best formulated by reviewing the case and the reading materials up and including the current week in the course. The questions are worded to help you apply the readings to the case, so don’t limit yourself to the case’s terminology and perspective. The best analysis will abstract the case content by applying the reading materials to draw broader lessons about the material Case Study 2 Questions: Vail Ski Resorts Goes High-Tech for High Touch List and describe the types of systems described in this case study. How do these systems improve the operation of the business? How do these systems support decision-making? Identify 3 different decisions that can be supported by these systems. Case Study 2: Vail Ski Resorts Goes High-Tech for High Touch Vail Ski Resort is the largest single mountain ski resort in the United States, with 5,289 acres of the most diverse and expansive skiing in the world. To its world-class skiing, Vail is also trying to offer world-class customer care—fine dining; spas and ski valets ready to haul, stow, and retrieve your equipment; heated boots; and hand-warming packets. Vail’s season pass is a top value industry-wide; its free PEAKS Rewards membership program further inculcates customer loyalty. Members can the most economical lift tickets online, link the PEAKS card to a credit card, and accumulate points that can be redeemed free lift tickets, ski school lessons, and various discounts. In 2012, Vail Ski Resort installed the fastest, highest capacity gondola in the United States. Seating ten people per cabin, and with an uphill speed of 1200 feet per minute, the state-of-the-art gondola carries 3600 skiers per hour while decreasing ride time from 9 to 7.5 minutes. Heated seats and Wi-Fi access make it one of the world’s most customer-friendly ski lifts as well. Long lift lines have always created a big headache for skiers. In the past, the only way to gauge the flow of the crowd was to ask lift operators or check on bulletin boards at the bottom of the lifts. Now Vail skiers are able to obtain accurate up-to-the minute lift line information by using social networking, streaming alerts, and the resort’s own Witter account. Slope congestion can be alleviated by offering special pins or prizes to coax guests to move to a different slope. Guests can be directed to on-mountain dining locations at lunch time. Vail now uses radio frequency identification (RFID) lift tickets and ski passes. Part of the EpicMix social media program, the tickets and passes are scanned at the base of each lift so that skiers and snowboarders can track how many lifts they ride and the vertical feet ascended each day. The scanned data are automatically transferred to an EpicMix application which can be accessed from either a smartphone or a computer. The basic program is free and confers various pins and virtual awards based on user statistics. For example, you earn the “Connoisseur” pin after 75 lifts and the “Over the Moon” pin when you surpass 350,000 vertical feet skied. After you create your EpicMix account, you can view and share stats by linking to your Facebook and Twitter accounts. The EpicMix Racing program provides additional fun. At one of six race courses, you can compete against friends and family, all skiers, and even 2010 Olympic women’s downhill gold medalist Lindsey Vonn. At the beginning of each season, the four-time overall World Cup champion establishes a course time for race courses at Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone, Heavenly and Northstar. Race pros then ski the courses to establish their “seconds behind Lindsey.” ‘lb factor in changing course conditions, every day one of the race pros skis each course and uses his or her “seconds behin Lindsey” to determine a course time for Vonn on that particular day. When you ski a course, your actual time is automatically recorded and then adjusted for gender, age, and discipline. Snowboarders, telemark skiers, and adaptive skiers with disabilities and special needs can also participate. Scores are computed based on each skier’s “seconds behind Lindsey,” and gold, silver, and bronze medals are awarded to the top three daily. Race results and leaderboards are accessed on or the EpicM mobile app, available for Apple and Android smartphones. Your dashboard tallies your Lindsey Vonn Race Series points, EpicMix Racing medals, total number of resort check-ins, total days on a mountain, vertical feet, pins earned, and number of EpicMix photos taken. The six race course mountains are staffed by 140 professional photographers. Photos are automatically identified and uploaded by scanning the intelligent chip embedded in the skier’s lift ticket. Photos can be captioned and shared free on Facebook and Twitter, or you can purchase prints at a number of locations, including, of course, the Children’s Ski Schools. You can also purchase a $30.00 season package for unlimited downloads of all images taken at all locations and print them out later. All of these amenities turn a ski vacation into an “experience” that can be shared with family and friends, increasing emotional attachment and promoting customer retention. Still, to ensure that it is fully leveraging the wealth of customer data it collects, Vail Ski Resorts’ parent company Vail Resorts implemented SAS Customer Intelligence software. Customer data were previously collected and stored in a number of unrelated systems. Now, the data are compiled in a single database that includes all customer points of contact, allowing a complete picture of customer habits and preferences to emerge. Rather than one or two versions of a marketing campaign, Vail Resorts now runs 30 to 50, targeted to specific groups. In the future, the company expects to expand to hundreds or even thousands of personalized, individual communications. SAS predictive analytics will help Vail Resorts to identify guest motivations and anticipate customer desires, while customer segmentation models identify profitable segments to which they might be steered. Vail Resorts plans to further personalize its engagement with its guests and enrich their mountain experiences before they have even begun.


Case Study Two

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Question One

Systems are regarded as organized, intentionally structured that typically comprises of the interrelated and interdependent components, entities, and factors among others and they continuously affect each other. In this case study, various systems have been highlighted, and they include; Executive Support Systems (ESS) that is significant is assisting the managing directors of the Vail Ski Resort where there is the constant use of ski lifts thus calls for a regular maintenance program. the system also supports them is coming up with the most effective marketing strategies that will generate a significant amount of return skies where to focus more investment programs to ensure most substantial returns are fulfilled (Laudon & Laudon, 2013). Secondly, there is the decision-support system that alerts the operators on the most used ski lifts thus providing room for constant update of the maintenance scheme. It also documents the type of clients that should be receiving specialized treatment and promotions. Thirdly, there is the use of management information systems that are significant in providing the other stakeholders with relevant data on the resort’s performance. In the Vail Ski Resort, these systems are influential in offering skies with the rewards for moving to different lifts. Fourthly, there are the transaction processing systems that are used to assemble fundamental information including the total figure of skiers utilizing each lift anytime.

Question Two

These systems have been of great significance in the operations of the business in that it has allowed the Vail Ski Resort executives to come up with informed and right action plans due to the well-informed information that is derived from these systems. Through this, the management of Vail Ski is in a position of increasing the type of services being rendered to various clients and their quality. These systems are capable of assisting the Vail Ski Resort in enhancing their production and the growth of the business through providing relevant data on some of the services that are not appealing to the customers. This is achievable as the resort is capable of focusing on the target clients who typically use many resources that give them a significant profit. As known, Vail Ski Resort is in a position of providing some of the best amenities to their clients than their other competitors (Gössling et al. 2012). Typically, the stakeholders and the managers can apply the information from these systems in coming up with comprehensive programs and decisions that will boost the resort’s effectiveness and increase the clients base.

Question Three

There are various decisions made at the Vail Ski Resort that are typically supported by these information systems in their operations, and some of these decisions include the marketing campaigns. This is done through depicting the type of clients that should be in a position to receive regular advertisements, discounts, and privileges. Also, the systems assist the administrators to come up with the number of clients that promises the most significant return on investment. Another significance of these systems in decision making includes the maintenance where the managers can highlight the number of lifts operating and the ones that should be maintained. Should the components already installed be enhanced, replaced, or destroyed if they are not contributing towards the success of the organization (Pickering, 2011)? The systems are also influential in improving the end profits where the new SAS system will be in a position of providing more information to the resort management team that will be essential in boosting the guest’s motivations.



Gössling, S., Scott, D., Hall, C. M., Ceron, J. P., & Dubois, G. (2012). Consumer behaviour and demand response of tourists to climate change. Annals of Tourism Research, 39(1), 36-58.

Laudon, K. C., & Laudon, J. P. (2013). Management Information Systems 13e.

Pickering, C. (2011). Changes in demand for tourism with climate change: a case study of visitation patterns to six ski resorts in Australia. Journal of Sustainable Tourism, 19(6), 767-781.


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