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MC0076- Management Information Systems

Assignment Set- 1
1. What do you understand by Information processes data? Ans:Data are generally considered to be raw facts that have undefined uses and application; information is considered to be processed data that influences choices, that is, data that have somehow been formatted, filtered, and summarized; and knowledge is considered to be an understanding derived from information distinctions among data, information, and knowledge may be derived from scientific terminology. The researcher collects data to test hypotheses; thus, data refer to unprocessed and unanalysed numbers. When the data are analysed, scientists talk about the information contained in the data and the knowledge acquired from their analyses. The confusion often extends to the information systems context, and the three terms maybe used interchangeably.

2. How do you retrieve information from manual system? Ans:Information retrieval (IR) is the area of study concerned with searching for documents, for information within documents, and for metadata about documents, as well as that of searching structured storage, relational databases, and the World Wide Web. There is overlap in the usage of the terms data retrieval, document retrieval, information retrieval, and text retrieval, but each also has its own body of literature, theory, praxis, and technologies. IR is interdisciplinary, based on computer science, mathematics, library science, information science, information architecture, cognitive psychology, linguistics, statistics and law. Key Drawbacks in Manual Paper Based Systems  No transparency.  Limited accountability.  Can’t retrieve information quickly.  Chance of loss.  Can’t track or monitoring status of file processing.  Scope for tampering contents.  Not able to answer customer questions.  Status of file is not known to the applicant.  Entire organization is dependent on the file custodian for answers. Manual processes can be unreliable, slow and error prone. Errors reduce confidence in the organization. Restricted to onsite working hours and geography. Manual data entry, searching for lost files, and manual rework waste time and valuable resources. Papers can be lost at any point along the process, exposing potentially sensitive data. Physical papers can be hard to track and take up physical space for storage


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The early fear that computers would so improve a person’s ability to process and manage information that a job holder would need only one-third to one-half the time to do his or her job has been dispelled The reverse has occurred. information overload become an even more significant challenge.Challenges of Information Management In identifying their information management requirements. ASM of Airtel. They must also find ways to manage data better. 3. First. Enhancing Personal Productivity Employees in any organization increasingly use information technology to improve their personal productivity. they must acquire and maintain the technical skills needed for effective personal information management. they must find ways to enhance their personal productivity. Maintaining Technical Skills SIKKIM MANIPAL UNIVERSITY Page 2 . Often employees must lobby their employers to add new technology that will help increase personal productivity. may wish to do some library research about competitors’ products. They must know how to access the information they require and recognize when manual data collection and processing is adequate. not hinder. As individuals move higher in the organizational hierarchy and assume more managerial responsibility. they must deal with large quantities of information that may create overload. they may face insufficient or conflicting information. What are the challenges of information management? Ans: . such information may not address their needs. Facing Insufficient or Conflicting Information Although computers can make large quantities of information available to individuals. Fourth. their performance. individuals face four major challenges in addition to securing the most appropriate information. employees must know how to use computers to facilitate. In spite of the large amount of information in the library’s electronic catalog. Ramesh. To ensure high productivity. Third. The ability to show the cost-effectiveness of additional expenditures for diagnosing and meeting information needs is critical. users may also obtain conflicting information if one source updates information more frequently than another does. Employees must also understand and demonstrate when advanced technology is a detriment rather than an asset. 4.MC0076. 1. Because computers process input from diverse sources.Management Information Systems 3. 2. To avoid such overload individuals must carefully asses their information needs and then find effective ways of managing the required and available information. she may not be able to secure the precise information she needs. Second. Dealing with Quantities of Information The gap between the amount of information that an organization can collect and the ability of its employees to make sense of that information has been widening rather than narrowing. an overload of information. Often employees face an infoglut.

to widely spread personal computers (also known as microcomputers). 4. is called distributed processing. relying on single powerful mainframes. to the ultra high capacity archival memories that are also employed in some cases. database. The use of multiple computers. a hierarchy of memories. memory hierarchy. to distributed processing have been the rapidly increasing power and decreasing costs of smaller computers.Management Information Systems Finally.MC0076. a keyboard or a mouse) and producing output (say. Thus. ranging from powerful mainframe machines (sometimes including supercomputers) through minicomputers. usually interconnected into networks by means of telecommunications. Explain the different components of MIS. minicomputers. The driving forces that have changed the information processing landscape from centralized processing. which controls all other units by executing machine instructions. input and output devices Communications: local area networks. others do not. using information technology effectively requires continuous updating of technical skills. Ensuring that employees have the appropriate skills has both financial and time cost implications. employees may find their mobility and productivity limited by the extent to which they can learn new technical skills independently of their employer. minicomputers. Though the packaging of hardware subsystems differs among the three categories of computers (mainframes. Ans:. Almost all organizations employ multiple computer systems. a printer or a video display terminal). COMPONENT DESCRIPTION Hardware Multiple computer systems: mainframes. all of them are similarly organized. personal computers Computer system components are: central processor(s). software. As a result.The components of MIS The physical components of MIS comprise the computer and communications hardware. Although many companies provide training to their employees. through secondary memories (such as disks) where on-line databases are maintained. personnel. a computer system comprises a central processor (though multiprocessors with several central processing units are also used). and wide area networks Software Database Personnel Systems software and applications software Organized collections of data used by applications software Professional cadre of computer specialists. metropolitan area networks. and procedures. and devices for accepting input (for example. The memory hierarchy ranges from a fast primary memory from which the central processor can fetch instructions for execution. and microcomputers). end users in certain aspects of their work SIKKIM MANIPAL UNIVERSITY Page 3 .

each containing the same fields (for example. Computer software falls into two classes: systems software and applications software. such as COBOL or C. albeit with different values. Applications software directly assists end users in their functions. systems analysts. A file is a collection of records of the same type. Large application systems consist of a. A simple way to organize data is to create files. data items must be organized so that individual records and their components can be identified and. depending upon an organization’s need. operator manuals. Many categories of applications software are purchased as ready-to-use packages. such as DOS or IBM OS/2. Telecommunications monitors manage computer communications. The hallmark of the present stage in organizational computing is the involvement of end users to a significant SIKKIM MANIPAL UNIVERSITY Page 4 . personalcomputer users gain access to the broad computational capabilities of large machines and to the resources maintained there. Various network configurations are possible. Systems software manages the resources of the system and simplifies programming. check out its hardware. you start the machine. for example. This connectivity converts personal computers into powerful workstations. The use of purchased application packages is increasing. Fast local area networks join machines. The individual files of a database are interrelated. Even if you are just using a personal computer. related to one another. as well as the so-called vertical applications serving a specific industry segment (for example.Management Information Systems Procedures Specifications for the use and operation of computerized information systems collected in user manuals. database management systems make it possible to organize vast collections of data so that they are accessible for fast and simple queries and the production of reports. programmers. Wide area networks connect machines at remote sites. Multiple files may be organized into a database. and similar documents Multiple computer systems are organized into networks in most cases. often with highly specialized skills. Examples include generalpurpose spreadsheet or word processing programs. make it possible to program an application in a higher-level language. manufacturing resource planning systems or accounting packages for small service businesses). such as large databases. Software translators-compilers or interpreters. Professional MIS personnel include development and maintenance managers. However. All of these actions fall under the control of an operating system. both within the company and in its environment. if needed. or an integrated collection of persistent data that serves a number of applications. Through networking. employee name and annual pay). for example) control all the resources of a computer system and enable multiple users to run their programs on a computer system without being aware of the complexities of resource allocation. and call up a desired program. and operators. the bulk of applications software used in large organizations are developed to meet a specific need. To be accessible. Operating systems (UNIX. The emerging metropolitan area networks serve large urban communities. a complex series of actions takes place when.MC0076. most frequently clusters of personal computers. number of programs integrated by the database. at a particular organizational site such as a building or a campus. For example. the employee file contains employee records. The translator converts program statements into machine instructions ready for execution by the computer’s central processor.

like their development. Well-structured decision rules. report information is obtained and printed (or. 5) MRS generally has limited analytical capabilities-they are not built around elaborate models. 6. potential internal Weaknesses. 5. Ans:. Based on simple processing of the data summaries and extracts. Naturally. but rather rely on summarization and extraction from the database according to given criteria. is a rather elaborate process. List down the Potential External Opportunities. over an extensive period time. 4) MRS is oriented towards reporting on the past and the present.MC0076. This limits the informational flexibility of MRS but ensures a stable informational environment.Characteristics of MRS 1) MRS are usually designed by MIS professionals. rather than end users. are built into the MRS itself. operating. 6) MRS generally report on internal company operations rather than spanning the company’s boundaries by reporting external information. information gained through MRS is used in the manager’s decision-making process. Mention different characteristics of MRS. Modification of such systems. rather than projecting the future. Procedures to be followed in using. 3) MRS does not directly support the decision-making process as a search for alternative solutions to problems. Ans:Potential External Opportunities  Serve additional customer groups  Enter new markets or segments  Expand product line to meet broader range of customer needs  Diversify into related products  Vertical integration  Falling trade barriers in attractive foreign markets SIKKIM MANIPAL UNIVERSITY Page 5 .Management Information Systems degree in the development of information systems. such as economic order quantities for ordering inventory or accounting formulas for computing various forms of return on equity. and maintaining computerized systems are a part of the system documentation. with the use of life-cycle oriented development methodologies (as opposed to first building a simpler prototype system and then refining it in response to user experience). Great care is exercised in developing such systems because MRS is large and complex in terms of the number of system interfaces with various users and databases. 2) MRS is built for situations in which information requirements are reasonably well known and are expected to remain relatively stable. if of limited size. displayed as a screen) in a prespecified format.

Management Information Systems  Complacency among rival firms  Faster market growth Potential Internal Weaknesses  No clear strategic direction  Obsolete facilities  Lack of managerial depth and talent  Missing key skills or competence  Poor track record in implementing strategy  Plagued with internal operating problems  Falling behind in R&D  Too narrow a product line  Weak market image  Weaker distribution network  Below-average marketing skills  Unable to finance needed changes in strategy  Higher overall unit costs relative to key competitors 7. process presentation management. SIKKIM MANIPAL UNIVERSITY Page 6 .MC0076. 4) Application and use of standards in all the phases of development and in the product. 5) Front end tools and back end data based management system tools for the data. Ans:are:The Technology Evaluation factors that need to be considered during ERP selection 1) Client server architecture and its implementation-two tier or three tier. 2) Object orientation in development and methodology. 3) Handling of server and client based data and application logic. What are the technology evaluation factors that need to be considered during ERP selection.

8) Support system technologies like bar coding. 9) Down loading to PC based packages. Ans:Common Business Exposures Some of the Possible Causes Business Exposure Erroneous keeping Unacceptable accounting Business interruption record Incomplete or inaccurate processing of transactions Improper interpretation accounting practices Many factors including organizational databases or Willful disregard for irreparable damage to Erroneous management decisions Fraud embezzlement Statutory sanctions Excessive costs Misleading information or failing to acquire necessary information or Deliberate communication of wrong information Violation of laws or reporting regulations Failure to acquire approvals for high-value expenditures Loss or destruction of Lack of adequate safeguards over organizational resources resources Loss of competitive Many factors including use of poor IS/IT to satisfy customer requirements advantage Risks of Internet to Organizations  Contracting viruses SIKKIM MANIPAL UNIVERSITY Page 7 .Management Information Systems 6) Interface mechanism: Data transfer. 7) Use of case tool. What are the common business exposures and risk of using internet by organization. 8. EDI.MC0076. MS-Office. etc. real time access. network. lotus notes. 11) Hardware-software configuration management. imaging. report writers. 10) Operating system and its level of usage in the system. screen painter and batch processor. OLE/ODBC compliance. screen generators. communication.

receipt and acceptance or goods and paying the bill amount. The business is re-engineered through process reengineering and the business has a number of processes which together produce the business results. But when it comes to re-engineering. it will be re-engineered right from the purchase ordering to cheque payment to the vendor. one is required to make some very basic and fund a. storing. For example. the scope expands to manufacturing. In a classical organisational set-up. the order processing scope in the traditional sense is within the marketing department. the different processes are handled in parts within the four walls of the department and the functions are limited to the responsibility assigned to them. Explain with relevant example the concept of business process. The business process is defined as ‘a set of activities performed across the organisation creating an output of value to the customer’. The reason for covering the purchase ordering as a part of the bill payment process. is that the purchase order information decides the number of aspects of bill payment. You concentrate on the ‘process’ and not on the task when it comes to reengineering. delivering and recovering the money.mental changes in one’s conventional thinking. the scope of the bill payment is not limited to the accounts and finance departments but it covers ordering the vendors. Every process has a customer who may be internal or external to the organisation.MC0076. When the bill payment process is to be re-engineered. Also mention their elements.Management Information Systems  Interception of passwords by hackers  Interception of sensitive/commercial data  Illegal/objectionable use of site by users  Inability to effectively disconnected Internet to own employees  Misrepresentation of identity by site visitors  Legal loopholes in electronic contracts  No security against eavesdropping  No security against interception  Misuse of supplied/captured information  Misrepresentation of identity of site 9. The scope of the process runs across the departments and functions and ends up in substantial value addition which can be measured against the value expectation of a customer. SIKKIM MANIPAL UNIVERSITY Page 8 . Ans:Business process For initiating business re-engineering. Likewise.

the process of receiving a visitor in the organisation could be considered as noncritical. leave. accessing data. performing. security. There are critical processes and not so critical processes. Basic elements of business process are:  Motivation to perform  Data gathering. The process is executed through the basic steps such as receiving the input. processed and stored. validated and used for decision making. A business process in any area of the business organisation performs through basic steps. then all the processes which generate and add value to the customer are called the value stream processes. For example. receive input. But the process of new product development from the concept to the prototype is critical as it is expected to contribute high value to the customer. processing. The data is used in the process to generate the information which would be checked. If the work done under any activity is analyzed. In organisation.MC0076. it will be seen that the people are moving papers SIKKIM MANIPAL UNIVERSITY Page 9 . It eliminates redundancy by eliminating the steps. If the external customer focus is taken as a criterion for process selection. recording. which contribute to the value significantly. The critical business processes are those. The other processes in the organisation contribute to the overheads of performing the business function. process. The reengineering approach attempts to eliminate or shorten the steps so that resource consumption is reduced and time of process execution is shortened. document. the processes involving attendance. Such processes are a second priority as far as re-engineering is concerned. the data is gathered. measure. it consumes resources and time. perform. to the value customer is looking for. the customer is looking for. The decision is then communicated. travelling and accounting are not value stream processes as the resources employed in them do not create a value or improve a value to the customer. analysing the document. produce and communicate. While the non-critical processes do not contribute much to the value. A business process defined for re-engineering has a clear cut ’start and end’.Management Information Systems The basic element of the processes is motivation to perform certain activities. For example. record / store. such as. analyze. processing and storing  Information processing  Checking. measuring the input. Every process is made of a series of activities. validating and control  Decision making  Communication All these relate to human initiative. producing the results and communicating them. which do not contribute. When the process is performed. In each activity some ‘work’ is done which produces some result for processing into the next activity. resulting into a business result. The value stream processes are critical and become the immediate candidates for reengineering. there are long processes and short processes. access. payment of wages. These steps are performed a number of times across the execution process. In the process execution.

The MIS in the reengineered organisation would be more of a performance monitoring tool to start with and then a control for the performance. it is a business process. The data capture. activity. The traditional MIS is function-centered like finance. The decision support systems will be integrated in the business process itself. evaluating customer satisfaction.Management Information Systems and products to achieve some result. Explain the link between MIS and BPR. enabling the process to become automotive in its execution. production. work culture and style and the value system. expectations and perceptions. The MIS will concentrate more on the performance parameter evaluation which is different in the re-engineered organisation. viz.MIS and BPR Any exercise towards building design of the management information system will be preceded by an exercise of business process re-engineering. paper. Fig: Work model Figure above shows this work model comprising six elements. document and communication. participating people are considered as a team working with the sole objective of achieving the customer expectation on value. etc. In such process. The business itself would undergo a qualitative change in terms of the business focus. This would change the platform of business calling for a different MIS.MC0076. The Management Information System in a re-engineered organisation would be process centred.. processing. When such work modules are viewed together as a single entity. decision and product stand to scrutiny through a fundamental rethinking for radical redesign to produce dramatic results. 10. information. It is. Ans:. analysis and reporting would be process central and performance efficiency would be evaluated in relation to the value generated by the processes. SIKKIM MANIPAL UNIVERSITY Page 10 . In the process they collect the information for decision making and then carry out a physical activity of pushing the product or the output using the paper for record. essential to have a relook at the organisation where the mission and goals of the organisation are likely to be replaced. where triggers are used to move the process. The triggers could be business rules and stored procedures. therefore. material. The people who manage the business are engaged in the series of such work modules distributed across the organisation. Building the MIS is a long-term project. people. In reengineering exercise all the six entities.

Management Information Systems The role of Management Information System will be raised to a level where the following activities would be viewed for the management action:  Control of process cycle time  Work group efficiency  Customer satisfaction index  Process efficiency and effectiveness  Effectiveness of the Management in enterprise management and not in enterprise resource  The strength of the organisation in terms of knowledge.MC0076. SIKKIM MANIPAL UNIVERSITY Page 11 . however. learning and strategic effectiveness The traditional role of the MIS as a decision supporter will continue.

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