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Chapter Objectives
At the end of this chapter, you would have learnt : Information and decision making To understand the types of information and their use for decision making and control processes. Information systems To know the categories of information systems and the challenges facing information systems in business activities. Management activities To understand the activities in managing information systems. Business and information systems To understand the relationship between business and information systems, how to perform enterprise analysis and identifying critical success factors.


• Management control. store and disseminate information to support decision making. • Structured decisions. to a challenge posed by the environment. • Strategic decision. φ From a business perspective. based on information technology. φ Decision Type Characteristics Time Frame Expectation Source Scope Frequency Organisation Operational control Historical Anticipated Largely Internal Detailed Real Time Highly Structured Managerial control S S S S S S Strategic Planning Predictive Unanticipated Largely External Summary Periodic Loosely Structured φ The following section shows the types of decisions and controls used in management context.2 Information Systems φ Information systems are interrelated components working together to collect. φ Formal information systems can either be computer-based or manual. analysis and visualisation in an organisation. 1-2 . • Operational control. process. control.CHAPTER 1: INFORMATION MANAGEMENT 1.1 Information and Decision φ Information is data that have to be shaped into a form that is meaningful and useful to human beings. • Unstructured decisions. Information has certain characteristics that will make them suitable for specific purposes. • Knowledge-level decision. 1. • Semistructured decisions. co-ordination. an information system is an organisational and management solution. The following is a summary of the characteristics and the suitability for decision making.

1. • • • • • The Strategic Business Challenge.1 Categories of Information φ In Systems Analysis (SA205). different types of information systems that were described include transaction processing systems (TPS). the following management activities must be performed: • • • • • Supervision and project management. The Information Systems Investment Challenge.2. The Information Architecture Challenge. relationships with customers and suppliers. executive information systems (EIS). The Globalisation Challenge.CHAPTER 1: INFORMATION MANAGEMENT 1.3 Management Activities φ To ensure that the information systems perform their intended functions. Building and maintaining a workable information system requires certain challenges to be met. and internal operations. The Responsibility and Control Challenge. Planning. φ However. The details of these systems will not be repeated here.2 Challenges of Information φ Increasingly. information systems are bringing about changes in business goals. Security Management.2. management information systems (MIS). Personnel management Financial management 1-3 . decision support system (DSS) and expert systems. • • • • Operational level systems Knowledge level systems Management level systems Strategic level systems 1. we would like to look at information systems from another form of classification. by the management levels.

φ An information systems plan indicates the direction of systems development.2 Establishing Organisational Information Requirements φ In order to develop an effective information systems plan. the current situation.4.4 Business and Information 1. the management strategy. • • • Critical success factors are a small number of easily identifiable operational goals. the rationale. 1-4 . One strength of enterprise analysis is that it gives a comprehensive view of the organisation and systems/data use and gaps. • • φ Critical success factors (CSF). Two principal methodologies for establishing the essential information requirements of the organisation as a whole are enterprise analysis and critical success factors. The strength of the CSF method is that it produces a smaller data set to analyse than enterprise analysis. The central method of enterprise analysis is ask relevant questions about the information requirements of a large sample of managers. Organisations need to develop an information systems plan that supports the overall business plans. The principal method used in CSF analysis is personal interviews with a number of top managers to identify their goals and resulting CSFs. 1. φ Enterprise analysis • • • Enterprise analysis is an analysis of organisation wide information requirements by looking at the entire organisation. Once specific projects have been selected from the strategic plan. an information systems plan can be developed.1 Linking to the Business φ Deciding what new systems to build should be an essential component of organisational planning process. The main problem with enterprise analysis is that it produces an amount of data that is expensive to collect and difficult to analyse.4. the implementation plan and the budget. Enterprise analysis is especially suitable for start-up or massive change situations. the organisation must have a clear understanding of both the long and short tem information requirements.CHAPTER 1: INFORMATION MANAGEMENT 1. Another strength of enterprise analysis is that it helps to produce an organisational consensus by involving a large number of managers and users of data.

This method is clearly biased towards top management because there are the ones interviewed. The weakness of this method is that the aggregation process and the analysis of data take skill and experience to be effective. • • 1-5 .CHAPTER 1: INFORMATION MANAGEMENT • Another advantage is that the CSF method is that it takes into account the changing environment with which organisations and managers must deal.