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Q1) (a) What specific managerial roles can information systems support?

Where are information systems particularly strong in supporting managers, and where are they weak? Ans) Information systems play three fundamental and managerial roles in the business, which are as follows: 1. Support of its business processes & operations. 2. Support of decision-making by its managers. 3. Support of its strategies for competitive advantage. We will see that many different types of information system implement hese vital roles. We also see that these roles given to the information systems function have expanded significantly over the years. Information systems in the real world can be classified in several different ways. E.g., several types of information system can be classified conceptually as either operations or management information system. These are categorized this way to spotlight the major roles each plays in the operations and management of a business. MANAGEMENT SUPPORT SYSTEM: When information systems focus on providing information & support for effective decision-making by managers, they are called management support system. Management support system began when the concept of management information system (MIS) originated in the 1960s. MIS became the byword (buzzword) of almost all attempts to relate computer technology and systems theory to data processing in organizations. At the time, it became evident that computer were being applied to the solution of business problems in a piecemeal fashion, focusing almost entirely on the computerization of clerical & record keeping tasks. The concept of management information system was developed to counteract such inefficient development & ineffective use of computers. MIS concept is still recognized as vital to efficient & effective information systems in organization for two major reasons: It emphasizes the management orientation of information technology in business. A major goal of computer-based information systems should be the support of management decision-making. Not merely the processing data generated by business operation. It emphasized that a systems framework should be used for organizing information system applications. Business application of information technology should be viewed as interrelated & integrated computerbased information system and not as independent data processing jobs. Providing information & support for management decision-making by all type and levels of managers is a complex task. Conceptually, several major types of information systems are needed to support a variety of managerial end user responsibilities.

QUESTION NO. 1

Give examples to illustrate how information systems can help and support a firms business operations and managerial decision-making?

ANSWER NO. 1
Why Information Systems are Important
Why study information systems and information technology? That is the same as asking why anyone should study accounting, finance, operations management, marketing, human resource management, or any other major business function. Information systems and technologies have become a vital component of successful businesses and organizations. They thus constitute an essential field of study in business administration and management. That is why most business majors must take a course in information systems. Since you probably intend to be a manager, entrepreneur, or business professional, it is just as important to have a basic understanding of information systems as it is to understand any other functional area in business.

Information systems perform three vital roles in any type of organization:a. b. c. Support of business operations. Support of managerial decision-making. Support of strategic competitive advantage.

Lets take a retail store as an example to illustrate this important point. As a consumer, you have to deal regularly with the information systems that support business operations at the many retail stores where you shop. For example, most retail stores chases, keep track of inventory, pay employees, buy new merchandise and evaluate sales trends. Store operations would grind to a halt without the support of such information systems. Information systems also help store managers make better decisions and attempt to gain a strategic competitive advantage. For example, decision on what lines of merchandise need to be added or

discontinued, or on what kind of investment they require, are typically made after an analysis provided by computer based information systems. This not only supports the decision making of store managers but also helps them look for ways to gain an advantage over other retailers in the competition for customers. Example 1. business OGDCL has implemented the oracle applications for its Oracle Receivable module provides the environment.

complete information for the sales of products on daily basis, monthwise or yearly. It provides the information of oil, gas, LPG etc for the management decision as well as the need of customers. The major consumers/customers are WAPDA, PSO, SNGPL, and SSGC and now they will get the complete information through this computer technology. Example 2. different These oracle applications will provide early information fields in country. From this information

through online data feeding by WAN in Pakistan, because OGDC has the producing management will take decision well in time, which were not possible before this technology.

QUESTION NO.1

Elaborate the concept of system by taking an example from daily life.

ANSWER:

Definition of system 1. A group of interacting, interrelated, or interdependent elements forming a complex whole. 2. A functionally related group of elements, especially: a. The human body regarded as a functional physiological unit. b. An organism as a whole, especially with regard to its vital processes or functions. c. A group of physiologically or anatomically complementary organs or parts: the nervous system; the skeletal system. d. A group of interacting mechanical or electrical components. e. A network of structures and channels, as for communication, travel, or distribution. f. A network of related computer software, hardware, and data transmission devices. 3. An organized set of interrelated ideas or principles. 4. A social, economic, or political organizational form. 5. A naturally occurring group of objects or phenomena: the solar system. 6. A set of objects or phenomena grouped together for classification or analysis. 7. A condition of harmonious, orderly interaction. 8. An organized and coordinated method; a procedure. See synonyms at method. 9. The prevailing social order; the establishment. Used with the: You can't beat the system. System Concepts: A system can be most simply defined as a group of interrelated or interacting elements forming a unified whole.

System Components: Interacting or interrelated elements are as under:1. Hardware: The term hardware refers to machinery. This category includes the computer itself, which is often referred to as the central processing unit (PU), and all of its support equipment. Among the support equipment are input and output devices, storage devices and communications devices. 2. Software: The term software refers to computer programs and the manuals (if any) that support them. Computer programs are machine-readable in function in ways that produce useful information for data. 3. Data: Data are facts that are used by programs to produce are generally stored in useful information. Like programs, data them. 4. Procedures: Procedures are the policies that govern the operation of a computer system. Procedures are to people what software is to hardware is a common analogy that is used to illustrate the role of procedures in a CBIS. For instance, the steps that must be taken to enter a password and log on to a computer terminal are a procedure. 5. People: Every CBIS need people if it is to be useful. Often the most over looked element of the CBIS, people are probably the components that most influence the success or failure of information system. Users programmers, system analysts, and database administrators are just some of the people associated with computer based information system.

machine readable form on disk or tape until the computer needs

For Example, one of the main jobs of the receivables component of the transaction system is to correctly calculate customer account balances and to produce customer statements reflecting those balances.

Question. 3(a):

Select any functional area (e.g. finance, human resources, marketing etc.) within any large organization (such as the government or a bank) and then describe the business function and the major processes and procedures within that functional area. Also discuss what MIS exist to support these areas.

ANSWER
Auditor General of Pakistan (AGP) The Auditor Generals organization is the prime institution in the country for ensuring public accountability and fiscal transparency in governmental operations. The organization is expected to bring about improvements in the financial discipline and internal control environment in the executive departments for minimizing the possibility of waste and fraud. It has its 24 Field Audit Offices (FAOs) located in all provinces of Pakistan along with at least one audit sub-office in each district. AGP has about 1100 officers who are performing their duties in AGP headquarter, FAOs and other department of the government. Human Resource of AGP: Human resource is the most valuable asset of AGP Office, which has over the years developed professional expertise in state auditing in accordance with the internationally accepted standards. The department has a large number of officers specializing in various auditing and related disciplines. More specifically it has: 6 PhDs 45 Officials with professional certification 255 personnel with Masters Degree in professional disciplines Over 100 officers pursuing professional certification

HRM Department: Processes and Procedures Efficient and effective management of Human Capital has progressed to an increasingly imperative and complex process. The HRM department functions consist of the tracking existing employee data which traditionally includes personal histories, skills, capabilities, accomplishments and salary. The main functions of HRM department are: Maintenance of Employees database including their personal, professional,

educational data. Transfer / Posting of the employees Deputation Matters Promotions Performance Measurement Training & Development Establishment of HR Policies Compensation and Rewards Management

2.

Some years ago, HR department was used to perform all of its processes and procedures

manually. It used to record all of its data simply on computer through using MS-Office only. But with the rapid development of information systems, AGP office is also heading toward adopting the new technologies in order to facilitate the operations of HR department. Its employees database is very sensitive to the organization as it has to deal with the data of thousands of employees. Human Resource Management Information System: To reduce the manual workload of its administrative activities, AGP began to electronically automate many of its processes by introducing specialized HRM Information System. It uses HRMIS within the HR department to computerize employee database and information flow. 2. HRMIS provides a link between human resource management and information technology.

HRMIS allow the AGP office to automate many aspects of human resource management, with the dual benefits of reducing the workload of the HR department as well as increasing the efficiency of the department by standardizing HR processes and procedures. 3. Currently HRMIS encompasses several modules to deal with variant kinds of information

regarding HRM. These modules includes:Training Module It provides a system for organization to administer and track employee training and development efforts. It tracks the trainings being imparted to the employee within the country as well as his foreign trainings. It keeps record of training, certificates, and courses already taken by the employee. Employee Self-Service Module It allows employees to query HR related data and perform some HR transactions over the system. Employees may query their attendance record from the system without asking the information from HR personnel. The module also lets supervisors approve O.T requestes from their subordinates through the system without overloading the task on HR department.

Performance Appraisal Module This module keeps track of annual performance report of the employees. ACRs of the employee are part of this system. This module helps the Central Selection Board (CSB) to decide whether to promote a particular officer on the basis of his previous performances being provided by this module. This provides information about the point scoring system of ACRs. Promotions Modules Promotions Modules helps to know the employees who have just recently been promoted to next scale. It also indicates those employees who have forged to the promotion zone in the current year. Leave-Credit Module This module provides information regarding leave status of the employees. It keeps track of medical leave, sick leave, casual leave, leave with full pay etc. Employee can ask about their leave credit at any time during the year. Benefits Administration Module: It provides a system for organization to administer and track employee participation in benefits programmes. These typically encompass insurance, compensation, annual honorariums, and retirement etc. Transfer/Postings Module This module provides deals with the transfer posting of the employees. This module helps to know where a particular employee is presently posted. It keeps previous transfer/posting record of the employee too. This module also calls for the succession planning of the executives. Where the executive officers are posted in other offices and where they need to be posted, all this is done by this module. This also provides the current status of the positions for the AGP employees available in other department of the government.

Question No. 2 (a): Read the following scenario and answer the question below: .. 1. Diagnose the situation critically and list the types of information each store manager requires.

ANSWER
All the stores would possibly require some of the information based on the following systems:1. Management Information System(MIS)

MIS is an information system that generates accurate, timely and organized information so managers so that they can make decisions, solve problems, supervise activities, and track progress. Because it generates reports on a regular basis, a management information system sometimes is called a management reporting system (MRS). Management information systems often are integrated with transaction processing systems. To process a sales order, for example, the transaction processing system records the sale, purchases, and makes a deduction from inventory. Using this information system, the store managers may need to know the;

Daily, weekly, monthly and even quarterly and annual sales of the store total expenses being incurred on direct and indirect material Cost incurred on supporting services like warehousing Inventory stock position

2. Transaction Processing System A transaction processing system (TPS) is an information system that captures and processes data generated during an organizations day-to-day transactions. A transaction is a business activity such as a deposit, payment, order or reservation. Clerical staff of the store may record the sale activity. It enters it into system and prints invoice receipt for the customer. Store Keeper may record the inventory stock in the warehouse. Store keeper may also record the number of items being damaged or defective. Staff may confirm an action or triggering a response, such as printing an invoice, sending a thank-you note to a customer, or issuing a receipt to a client, maintaining data, which involves adding new data, changing existing data, or removing unwanted data. 3. Decision Support System A decision support system (DSS) is an information system designed to help users reach a decision when a decision-making situation arises. A variety of DSSs exist to help with a range of decisions. A special type of DSS, called an executive information system (EIS), is designed to support the information needs of executive management. Information in an EIS is presented in charts and tables that show trends, ratios, and other managerial statistics. This system will help the store managers to make certain decisions. Such as; Ordering Point decisions can be taken when the stock level decreases to an extent.

If there is decline in the sale of particular product, manager can decide whether to purchase more of it or replace the product simply. Sometimes, they need to add new product line or extend a product line. Whether to go for horizontal or forward integration by keeping in mind the current supply and delivery/distribution position of the goods. 4. Office Information System An office information system is an information system that uses hardware, software and networks to enhance work flow and facilitate communications among employees. Win an office information system, also described as office automation; employees perform tasks electronically using computers and other electronic devices, instead of manually. An office information system supports a range of business office activities such as creating and distributing graphics and/or documents, sending messages, scheduling, and accounting. All levels of users from executive management to employees utilize and benefit from the features of an OIS.

This system helps the store managers to; Contact with other managers via e-mail, fax etc. An intranet can be created within the store. Extranet can be used to share information among managers. Information can be presented to management in understandable manner. Question 2-(a):

2. Discuss which information can be part of computerized information systems? The System Analyst and Programmers may need the information while designing the Information System for the owner of the stores, such as;

Purchasing of new inventory Sale of inventory items Inventory Stock level position Which products have arrived to ordering point? Which products sale is decreasing? Which product need to be purchased in bulk quantity? Current trend of different goods. Total cost on the purchasing of goods Total cost on warehousing and delivery of items to other locations. Total Revenue being earned or periodic sales. Information reports being generated for management Cash position. Petty Cash fund status. Status of the current equipment or furniture to support the premises of the store Whether the required strength of staff is satisfactory? Etc.

Question No. 5 i. Why did Colin Savery reject a relational database solution? Explain.

He rejected the RDBMS because it takes 25% extra time of the organization to design the system. It is more code demanding system and takes at least six months time to test the end results. ii. How did the selection of an object-oriented DBMS address Bankers Trusts information needs? The organization wanted to save it time, determine the pros and cons of the system at the very first stage, wants to test the system quickly and reduce the programming code. The Object-oriented DBMS provided them the opportunity to meet their needs by saving 25% of extra time. It reduced the coding. It enabled the organization to test the end result in short time by testing gradually with 25 traders periodically. When the very first time, the firm tested the system over 25 traders, it got the opportunity to assess the risk associated with the object-oriented design and the number of advantages that can be availed. Likewise, if there is too much risk involved in the first phase of testing, then company could decide about not to consider the system anymore. If it gives more advantages then the system can be allowed to continue. iii. Advantages and risks of Object-oriented DBMS.

Strengths:

An OODB can simplify your system's persistency challenges. In many cases it can make deciding how to save and retrieve information simpler. An OODB can reduce the number of required languages in your architecture. The development team would no longer need to have skills in technologies such as JDBC, Pro*C/C++, and PL/SQL. Instead, developers are able to work with more commonly known concepts such as Java objects, iteration through collections, etc. OODBs also can reduce development time by allowing developers to focus on object persistence, not the decomposition of objects to rows and parent/child relationships in one or more tables.

Weaknesses: One of the most obvious and significant drawbacks is the risk involved in an RDB-toOODB migration. Relational databases have their own cons but they are proven and successfully used on data-driven systems. The architecture/design patterns for integrating RDBs into your system are well defined and demonstrated. In many OODB implementations, the OODB is tightly coupled to the application. This simplifies both the design and code, but the data abstraction layer has some value also. By removing it, you lose a layer of insulation from the database.

This can make it more difficult to migrate to a competing product without significant changes and re-tests. OODBs typically are weaker for ad hoc queries against the database Some OODB implementations do not provide sufficiently granular locking. It has limited platform support.

iv. How did Bankers Trust minimize the risks of using an object DBMS for its new system? Whenever a new system is designed, it is first tested at minor level so as to determine the potential of risk linked with the system design or are there more advantages than risks? Thats why the Bankers Trust first tested the system by implementing it at minor level. This enabled the organization to assess the risks involved with the system design and helped them to decided whether the system needs to be continued or not.

BIBLIOGRAPHY / REFERENCE

1. Management Information System By: James A. OBrien 2. Chapter 1-2, Management Information System by David Kroenke, Mcgraw Hill Edition, 1990.
3. Management Information Systems, 6th Edition, Raymond & Mcleod Jr.

Prentice Hall International Edition. i. Page 235-238, Chapter 8.