Writing Assignment #4
Report to Your Supervisor
Summary of the Assignment:
• Task: In this assignment, you will write a short report to the owner of a company to which you
have just been hired.
• Length: 1200-1500 words, single-spaced
• Graphics: You must integrate at least one graphic
• Sources: You will integrate at least three sources into the report.
The Situation and Your Role In It
You have been hired for the position of Manager for Customer Service at Lawn and Order Services, a
Lawn and Order maintains a robust business in landscaping both residential and business properties. The
company has many clients in the local DC-Maryland-Virginia (DMV) area.
The landscaping staff that services residential and business properties comprises 75 individuals. In
addition, the company has several staff working in its office in Landover, Maryland. Included among
these office staff members is the IT Department, which consists of 10 employees.
The growth of the company has led to some problems that concern you as a new employee.
The History of Lawn and Order Services
Some history on the company will help to explain the problems Lawn and Order has now.
Lawn and Order started off in 2010 as a small outfit, owned and operated by Chris Taylor. Chris grew up
in Prince George’s County, Maryland. He graduated from high school and took a few courses at a local
community college. He never graduated from the community college but instead, after completing 18
credits, decided to leave school to start a landscaping business.
Chris started off the business with one truck, three lawn mowers, and a few helpers. He operated the
business out of his house. Eventually, as the number of clients grew, so did the number of trucks, lawn
mowers, and pieces of equipment. He added new employees to assist with the landscaping.
Chris eventually leased office space in Landover in order to have a more professional and scalable base
from which to operate the company. In addition, as the company grew and its office staff grew, so did the
technology and IT needs.For the IT needs of the company, Chris took several steps. He hired a web developer, Sandra Davidson,
to develop a website for Lawn and Order. Sandra used WordPress as the platform. Chris later hired Jack
Johnson to develop and maintain a database of customers, past and present. The database includes
personal information on the customers, such as physical addresses, email addresses, and, for some, credit
Eventually, Chris hired a few more IT employees, all of whom persuaded Chris to put the company’s
database on the cloud instead of purchasing an expensive server to maintain in the office. Chris agreed.
The company then contracted with CloudSecure, a local cloud company.
The IT Department grew as the company grew. Marsha Nolton was later hired. She maintains the
company blog, also on WordPress, but with a different account from that of the website. The blog is an
effective marketing tool. It provides weekly updates on services, deals, and other information on the
company. In addition, other functions began to involve IT. Jared Stone was hired to run payroll for Lawn
and Order. With Jared’s input, the payroll information was put on the cloud. CloudSecure maintains all
payroll information on its servers.
Problems That Have Developed
Chris, in hiring the IT staff and organizing the department, was not privy to best practices in security in
the area of IT. As a result, some problems have developed.
For example, only Jack has access to the database of past and present clients. Jack logs into the system
with an ID and password that CloudSecure has provided him. This is not an ideal situation. If Jack were
to experience a medical emergency and become unavailable for a period of time, no one else at Lawn and
Order Services would have access to the database. If Jack were to leave the company, no one else at
Lawn and Order Services would be able to peform his duties. In addition, CloudSecure has a company
policy that forbids it to provide login or password information to anyone other than approved individuals.
The only approved individual now is Jack.
Morever, Sandra maintains the website through WordPress. She uses her personal email and password to
log into the system. But she is the only individual in the office who has access to or is able to update
anything on the website. Again, if anything were to happen to Sandra, Lawn and Order would be stuck.
No one else in the company can update its website.
Marsha manages the company’s blog, also on WordPress. The blog is an excellent marketing tool, with
weekly updates on services, deals, and other information on the company posted weekly. However,
Marsha is the sole maintainer of the blog. No one else at Lawn and Order has access to the blog to update
Jared runs payroll. Like the others, he is the only individual with any access to the payroll records.
Because the records are also on CloudSecure, if something were to happen to Jack, no options are
available for anyone else in the company to access the payroll records.
Overall, Lawn and Order grew at a rapid pace. Chris Taylor applied excellent management skills in
growing the landscaping business. However, Chris needs help in establishing responsible IT personnel
policies for the company. Chris has no background in this area.
Writing Assignment #4