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Management Information System
Today, we have an unquenchable thirst for information. The society has changed significantly from the barbarian to the agrarian society, from agrarian to the industrial society and from the industrial society to a society dominated by the service sector. This structural transformation has brought about discernible changes in the way people think. We are all living, not in an agrarian or industrial society but in an Information Society. In fact, we generally refer to the present times as the IT Age or the Information Era. Underneath this is a tacit acceptance of the fact that not since the advent of the automobile and the introduction of the telephone, an invention had such wide-spread impact on our society as the computer, which has ushered in the Information Era. If personal/individual life has been impacted by information, it has profoundly affected business organisations.
The term Information Technology (IT) brings up different images for different people. While for some it is the supercomputer, for others, it means laptop or palmtop. While for some it means the electronic gadgetry, for others, it means the efficiency in communication channels. As stated by Porter and Millar, Information Technology must be conceived of broadly to encompass the information that business create and use as well as a wide spectrum of increasingly convergent and linked technologies that process the information. In addition to computers, then, data recognition equipment, communications technologies, factory automation and other hardware and services are included.
Data Communication and IT Enabled Services
A computer cannot do anything on its own. It must be instructed to do a desired job. Hence, it is necessary to specify a sequence of instructions, which a computer must perform to solve a problem/perform a task. Such a sequence of instructions, written in a language, which can be understood by a computer, is called a computer program. For the computer to function and deliver the processing results, there has to be appropriate software. Software is a broad term given to “the instructions that direct the operation of the hardware”. Software could also be described as “the detailed instructions that control the operation of a computer system”. A set of instructions for a specific task is called a “routine” and a complete set of instructions to execute a related set of tasks is termed as “program”. Software instructions are also referred to as “code”. In this unit, you will learn about data communication and IT enabled services. To understand this, we first need to have an idea about software.
Management and Decision-Making(Management Information System Notes)
A decision is a choice made from available alternatives. MIS is crucial for decision- making as it facilitates effective and efficient decision-making. All managers/ management have to take decisions for good and efficient functioning of an organisation. Decisions are taken at all levels of management. Decision taken at the lower level of management is structured (routine or repetitive), decisions taken at the middle level of management are both structured and unstructured whereas decision taken at the top level of management is unstructured (innovative, strategic, long term). A decision-maker makes use of various tools for decision-making.
Initially, while discussing about MIS, we have said that MIS is a system, which provides information to the management. We have also said that we are living in an Information Age. Information is of critical importance for setting up, running, survival and prosperity of a business organisation. Information is also imperative today as it enables an organisation to gain and retain competitive edge and emerge winner. We will now discuss the concepts of information in more details as MIS is centered around information. So, what is information? Information is derived from data. Data is nothing but a random, unorganized collection of indications or measurements of certain qualities or attributes relating to an entity, recorded either in alphabetical, numerical, alphanumerical, voice, image, text or any other form.
Decision Support System
In the 1970s, a number of business organisations began developing information systems, which were significantly different from the information systems then in use. The new systems involved spending less resource both human and financial. The new systems were interactive and were designed to help specific end-users utilize data and models to discuss and divide€”not solve€”semi-structured and unstructured problems. These systems were called the decision support systems and by the end-1980s, were extended to groups and entire organisations.
System Analysis and Design
The concept of “systems” is of pivotal importance in the MIS. The system concept is basically a way of thinking about managing optimally in a wholistic perspective. It could also be considered as a framework for visualising and analysing both internal and external environments and the factors affecting these environments in an integrated manner. When we refer to “system”, it generally indicates an arrangement, a way of organising things in an orderly manner, a method or even a well-thought-out plan. System also means “a regularly interacting interdependent group of items forming a united whole”.
Organisations today are viewed as “systems”. A “Systems Approach” is followed while managing organisation’s information and making it available at the right time and right place to the right person at correct cost. Information thus plays an important role and is regarded as a critical resource in view of the contemporary, fiercely competitive business environment, both local and global. It is, therefore, imperative that organisations develop and continue to have “current” and appropriate information systems to ensure organisational effectiveness, efficiency and competitiveness.
The Database Management System
Data, as we are all aware, is critical for transaction processing. However, during the initial period of computer applications to data processing, the data was maintained/stored depending upon its use for application. Under this approach, each user system had its own master files and transaction files, which were processed separately. Although, the data required by many systems were common, there used to be repetition of data stored in various user systems, leading to data redundancy. The data redundancy, in turn, led to complexities in data management as all data has to be identical and currently updated in all the files, simultaneously. Data redundancy also resulted into lack of integrity and inconsistency of data available/stored in various user files.
Data Warehousing and Data Mining
The corporate organisations generate huge amount of data from their day-to-day activities/operations. Online Transaction Processing (OLTP), Point-of-Service (POS) Systems, ATMs and Webs have now become the new sources of data generation. This huge volume of routinely generated data are unfortunately, equally routinely collected and confined to the archives of many corporate organisations. Such data, in today’s Information Era, constitutes one of the potentially most powerful assets of the corporate organisations. However, as the data are routinely collected and stored away in the archives, these organisations typically face the dilemma of being “data-rich” but “information-poor”. This dilemma leads to the challenge of “How to extract valuable information from huge data and make it available to the right person, at the right place, at the right time, at the right cost and in the desired/appropriate form to support the decision-making process/function.
Information Security and Control
Information Technology and computers have brought about a paradigm shift in the way the corporate organisations operate. There is a significant impact of IT and computers on the business processes, evolution of new products/ services, improved profits, global integration and more efficient and effective allocation and utilization of resources, among others. IT and computers have indeed heralded the “Information Age”. Repentantly, “Information” itself has emerged as one of the most valuable and sought after “Resource”, conferring competitive advantage on those organisations, which have it. However, those organisations which missed the bus, did try to regain their position by sometimes, poaching or on other occasions, trying to encroach upon the Information Resource base of their competitors, by cracking or breaking into the Information/Computer Systems of their leading counterparts. The spread of Internet and the relative ease of access made this task of “Information Breach” relatively easier. The cracking or breaking into the computer system by way of malicious and unauthorized access could be any one of the following or otherwise:
i. Unauthorized reading of data (theft of information)
ii. Unauthorized modification of data
iii. Unauthorized destruction of data
Information System and Quality
Application of Information Technology was initially confined to scientific and research related activities, where time was not considered to be a constraint. However, as the IT capabilities and their impact on organisational functioning became apparent, IT emerged as a new, powerful tool to outperform business rivals and gain competitive advantage by improving product quality, adding value to quality, facilitating product delivery and changing the very processes in an organisation.
This unit gives you an introduction about the functioning of various systems in various departments of an organisation such as accounts payable system, production management system and marketing service system. The system design such as functional decomposition diagram, context level diagram, data flow diagram, data entry screen design and report layout are presented for these systems.
Applications in Service Sector
Unlike the manufacturing sector, the service sector does not have physical goods to be manufactured for the customer. Hence, the MIS normally found in a manufacturing and selling organisation will not be suitable in the service sector. The data processing applications like Payroll, Accounting and Inventory are required in the service industry too, but they may not be all critical to the service industry. The mission in a service industry is of providing the most satisfying service to the customer, while in a manufacturing industry; it could differ from industry to industry and from organisation to organisation. There are certain mission critical applications in the service industry, which need to be managed best. These applications make a service organisation efficient and effective in providing the best service to the customer. In a competitive situation, this industry requires service distinction to create an identity, a position and a growth, to remain ahead of the competition. In a service industry, therefore, a sensitive market and consumer research is necessary to identify the segment to be served and to study its service requirements, expectations and perceptions. Since the service demands are more dynamic than that of a product, a continuous search on the requirements, expectations and perceptions is to be conducted to upgrade and enhance the service facilities.
So, above are Management Information System Notes and I hope you will get full information from here.