MIS 1. – Review of characteristics of live enterprise system MIS 2. – Conditions of selected system using, basic parts, links
Management Information Systems are supposed to capture, process and issue information at the time and place required. They should help managers to handle large amounts of data and provide them with relevant information outcomes. The outcomes or reports allow manager to review current or past performance of a company. (for types of IS, see question no. 4&9 or notes from MIS course taught by Prof. Vrana)
A system that use the resources of hardware, software, and people to perform input, processing, output, storage, and control activities that transform data resources into information products.
3 MIS within the information systems framework
As the management information systems belongs to family of information systems, it is important to know how it is related to other types of IS (decision support systems, executive systems, etc.) For complete IS division see below located figure or notes from MIS by prof. Vrana:
4 Basic components
There are more approaches to the IS specification, but most of them are describing the same set of components. These are:
1) People resources - IS Specialists and end users
2) Hardware resources - includes all physical devices and materials used in information processing
(Machines and media).
3) Software resources - programs - a set of instructions that cause a computer to perform a particular
4) Data resources (Data, model, and knowledge bases)
5) Procedures (human activities required to interact with other components of IS)
Another view to components of IS is represented by following figure:
5 The development of IS
After we assumed five components of IS, all of them have to be integrated into organization’s flow of
work. Deciding what specific combination of these components to use for any given IS is very complex and time-consuming task. The whole system development process consists of several steps. First we identify the problem or opportunity that we have to address (the purpose of the system), we identify alternative ways to address the problem (different alternatives), decide on the best alternative (based on cost, ease of implementation and fulfilment of the goals), implementation and maintenance. The whole process is summarized by following figures:
The implementation is crucial part of IS development and it consist of following steps:
6 Make vs. buy decision
In today’s environment, it is unusual for organizations to build all of their information systems by
themselves. There are many software packages and programs available that are usually less expensive and time consuming to purchase one and customise than it is to develop it internally from scratch. The decision process whether make or buy mostly concerns company’s requirements on IS, business impact, number of vendors offering IS solutions, infrastructure, strategy, time aspect, security perspective, financial aspect, capabilities of internal IT department etc. The final decision must be based upon detailed analysis of above-mentioned issues and should provide company with the most effective solution. But even though, development of IS is very complicated, difficult and ever changing process. We could learn during the lectures in the third year of bachelor degree that “Information system is never finished, and if it ever is, it means it is time to replace it” :-)
7 IS employment phases
As there are different levels of need for centralized information system, there are different phases of IS perception. It describes how much is IS considered to be useful and how deeply is it implemented into the company’s common activities. There are five levels of IS employment:
8 Major merits of an information system
The use of information systems helps organizations compete more effectively by improving organizational decision-making and communications, by improving organizational operations and responsiveness and by improving suppliers relationships and customer satisfaction. Now let us describe the mentioned merits of information systems using a bit in depth:
8.1 Increasing the effectiveness and decision making
As important management activities can be viewed from the decision-making perspective. The way to improve management is therefore to focus on the improvement of decision-making process.
8.1.1 Automating decisions
Many decision are highly structured and can be automated. Automating decision through the use of information technology can help streamline the internal operations of an organization. It can also improve communications among and within organizations.
8.1.2 Supporting complex decisions
Most management decisions are not highly structured – a structured decision is one in which the
necessary inputs, the method to process those inputs, and the specific outputs are well known – and
cannot be completely automated. Even when the situation is very complex, it is usually possible to use information systems to support rather than replace the decision-making process. Management science is based on the application of mathematical models and draws fairly heavily on the use of statistical analysis. When the mathematical model fits well with the real problem, it may be possible to fully automate the decision. When the fit is less than perfect (usually), it is necessary to combine IS contribution with a human decision maker (decision support systems).
8.1.3 Augmenting knowledge
Humans have limited information processing capabilities and use shortcuts when analysing a problem under pressure. One important role of an IS is augmenting knowledge to help us make better decision. Expert systems are information systems that have been designed to capture and use the expertise of human decision makers. They use different techniques in providing suggested solutions to the problem posed to them. Most use structure that includes a separate database of previous cases (knowledge base), a group of if-then rules that are evaluated in a given sequence (inference engine), and an interface for the user to interact with the system (dialogue structure).
8.1.4 Centralization of data, decentralization of decision-making
When the data are centralized and accessible to all elements of information system, the decision-making process can be decentralized. The main burden is taken off the manager’s shoulders and decision-making
processes can be distributed.
8.2 Improving organizational communication
Organizational communication is similar to organizational decision-making in that it is pervasive and influences all aspect of management and organizational operations. Two general strategies to improve communications are to reduce distortion or reduce information overload. Information technology can play an effective role in supporting both strategies.
8.2.1 Reducing distortion and information overload
This is where the centralized database and organizational communications come into play. By storing the data in a central database and providing access to all individuals who require the data, there is less need to duplicate, manipulate and transmit data. This arrangement reduces the possibilities of intentional and
unintentional communication distortions, such as delaying the data transmission. It also reduces the possibility of overloading one individual.
8.2.2 Communication among organizations
Organizations, like individuals, need to communicate among themselves. Some of this communication is formal and some informal. Communication among organizations can suffer from the same problems that affect communications among individuals. Therefore IS can play a useful role in supporting not only intra-organizational communication, but also inter-organizational communication as well.
8.3 Improving operations
It is important to have operational process that is efficient and flexible. There are numerous ways that information systems may be used to improve the efficiency and flexibility of transformation process.
8.3.1 Accelerating business processes
Information technology is being used in numerous ways to transform the way organizations conduct their internal operations. Something as simple and common as a word-processing system can be used to effectively speed up a repetitive process. More advanced procedures require a knowledge base that compiles the appropriate information and its proper use is speeding up the process even more.
8.3.2 Increasing flexibility
There are systems helping company to get more flexible. For example the automated inventory monitoring can save company from running out of stock and can assure constant stock level required for successful production.
8.4 Improving supplier relations and customer satisfaction
The availability of inputs (supplies) and outputs (products and services) are critical success factors for the survival of the organization. From a competitive perspective, our emphasis on the input side can be broadly described as supplier relations and on the output side as customer satisfaction. Within these
broad categories there are many opportunities for using information technology to improve the competitive position of a firm. As an example of supplier relation enhancement, we can mention EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) used for intra-organizational communication on various levels. The customer satisfaction issue can be enhanced by allowing customer to create its own product configuration (Dell custom-designed PCs) using special interface of company’s information system.
9 Conditions of properly designed IS
A designer of information systems needs to thing about how to collect, process, transmit and format information in a way that supports a decision maker in addressing a given issue or accomplishing a given task. Information system support means not only providing relevant information, but also minimizing all sources of potential distortion. The main goal of IS is delivery of relevant information at precise time to a capable individual/organization using convenient medium.
9.1 Must be designed to minimize information overload and distortion
The design process of an effective information system that follows this philosophy involves following steps: (for further information on overload and distortion see. 8.2)
; Understand the objectives and business goals (the purpose) of IS
; Define the information needs that are to be fulfilled (data items, frequency, format, etc.) and who the
user of the system is.
; Map the information flows that will bring the necessary data into the information system (routing,
sources, etc.) and get the reports from the system to the people that require them. This step identifies
the communication network involved in fulfilling the particular information needs of a system. ; Identify the sources of distortion that may affect those flows and develop a plan to overcome them. ; Identify the obstacles to implementing the system and develop a plan to overcome them.
9.2 Different types of support (individual, workgroup, enterprise and inter-enterprise)
must be addressed
There are four levels of support an IS should provide:
; Individual support system – one that will help an individual to perform a given task better
; Workgroup support system – one that will help a group of individuals perform a task requiring
cooperation and coordination. For IS that will support workgroups, standards must be created for
software packages (word-processing SW), but each individual has certain space to customize its own
; Enterprise-wide support system – one that helps the whole organization function better. A good IS
ensures that the correct people get the correct information at the correct time. It must be decided
which information are to be stored, what kind of data should be captured (text, images, video…) and
which medium should be used for information transfer. The software used for enterprise collaboration
is called groupware. It can be divided into three basic groups:
; Inter-enterprise support system - one that links two or more organizations to perform a task better
(e.g. just in time delivery, electronic data interchange…). There must be reached a high level of
compatibility among the systems and the data formats must be standardized.
9.3 Ethical issues must be considered
It is important to consider the rights and responsibilities of the various stakeholders in the design and use of IS. A system that maintains detailed records of purchases by people may help in direct-marketing efforts, but it may also violate the individual’s right to privacy. To avoid unnecessary complications it is a food idea to consider potential ethical considerations. One relatively simple framework for analysing ethical concerns involves a four-step process:
1) Identify the ethical issue and primary stakeholder involved.
2) Determine if any relevant guidelines exist to address the situation (e.g. laws, rules) 3) Consider any relevant rights and duties (e.g. privacy rights). If rights and duties of various
stakeholders appear to conflict, attempt to weight the consequences of one action against another. 4) Reach a defensible decision recognizing that in some situations there may be no way to avoid
violating the rights or duties of some stakeholders.
10 The framework of IS
11 MIS value chain
Pro dalsi informace o MIS doporucuji nasledujici link, kde najdete furu online kurzu, informaci, obrazku a publikaci tykajich se manazerskych informacnich systemu.