Information Systems Thanks to the work of P Beynon-Davies
Information systems <ul><li>Information systems  existed in organisations  before  the invention of modern ICT – so they d...
Table 4.1:   Examples of  historical information, information systems, information technology and human activity systems
Figure 4.1:  Information system modelling constructs   <ul><li>This modelling technique uses four  </li></ul><ul><li>main ...
Figure 4.2:  An information systems model of the RAF early warning network
Infrastructure <ul><li>Organised activity requires  infrastructure </li></ul><ul><li>Infrastructure consists of  systems  ...
Figure 4.3:  Levels of infrastructure
Activity systems infrastructure <ul><li>The activity systems infrastructure shown on the next slide consists of a number o...
Figure 4.4:  Activity systems infrastructure of a typical manufacturing organisation
Figure 4.5:   Information flows between core back-end information systems <ul><li>An activity systems infrastructure relie...
Figure 4.6:  Sales order processing   <ul><li>An information system that communicates with a  customer-side  inventory man...
Order entry <ul><li>A key process that interfaces to the organisation’s customers </li></ul><ul><li>Captures the key infor...
Figure 4.7:   Order entry
Supply-side inventory management information system <ul><li>Most businesses have several forms of stock or inventory </li>...
Figure 4.8:   Supply-side inventory management information system
Purchase order processing information system <ul><li>Purchases are generated in two ways:  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The  inve...
Figure 4.9:  Purchase order processing information system
Financial information system <ul><li>Financial information systems have three major sub-systems:  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1)...
Figure 4.10:  Financial information system
Payroll system <ul><li>Payroll produces two primary  outputs :  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Payment  to the employee </li></ul><...
Figure 4.11:  Payroll system
Front-end information systems <ul><li>A number of  front-end information systems  exist around the core back-end informati...
Figure 4.12:   Back-end and front-end information systems infrastructure
Management information systems <ul><li>Management information systems (MIS) are used by an operational layer of management...
Figure 4.13:  Management information systems
Outbound logistics information system <ul><li>Shipment planning  determines which orders will be filled and from which loc...
Figure 4.14:  Outbound logistics information system
Customer-facing information systems <ul><li>Customer-facing information systems  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Support  demand-cha...
Figure 4.15:  Customer-facing information systems
Supplier-facing information systems <ul><li>Supplier-facing information systems support  supply chain   activities </li></...
Figure 4.16:  Supplier-facing information systems
Figure 4.17:  Employee-facing information systems <ul><li>Employee-facing information systems   </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Supp...
Figure 4.18:  Part of a company ’ s information infrastructure
Ontology Borrowed from philosophy meaning a systematic account or model of an area of existence –  logicians refer to as  ...
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Information systems

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Information Systems Presentation
(Based on the work of P Beynon-Davies)

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  • It is important to recognise that information systems have existed in organisations prior to the invention of modern ICT, and hence information systems do not need modern ICT to exist. The value of historical cases lies in the way in which we can distance ourselves from modern ICT and consider the essence of what information systems constitute. However, in the modern, global and consequently complex organisational world most information systems rely on hardware, software, data and communication technology to a greater or lesser degree.
  • This modelling technique uses four main constructs: agents, information flows, information stores and processes (information-handling).
  • To emphasise the historical provenance of the concept of an information system, this case considers an example of an information system that contributed to Allied victory during the 2nd World War. During the summers of the late 1930s the Royal Air Force’s Fighter Command created an information system that eventually contributed to victory in a decisive battle against the German Luftwaffe - the Battle of Britain: in 1940. Since control of the skies was an essential pre-condition of a successful sea-borne invasion, this victory caused Hitler to abandon the planned invasion of Britain and turn his attention eastwards to the Soviet Union. This, in turn, made possible the invasion of continental Europe by the Allies in 1944. The reason for discussing this historical information system is because the remoteness of time enables us to consider the issue of what constitutes an information system in a fresh light. A consideration of this particular example helps us to understand some of the important differences between information systems and ICT systems.
  • Organised activity of whatever form requires infrastructure. Infrastructure consists of systems of social organisation and technology that support human activity. In terms of business we shall argue that there are four layers of infrastructure. Each of these layers is critically dependent on the layer below it: activity systems infrastructure; information infrastructure, information systems infrastructure and ICT Infrastructure.
  • The infrastructure in Figure 4.4 consists of a number of activity sub-systems such as sales, after-sales, marketing, purchasing, receiving, warehousing, production, human resources, packing and shipping. Such activity sub-systems relate together in flows of physical items and information.
  • This infrastructure consists of a number of activity sub-systems such as sales, after-sales, marketing, purchasing, receiving, warehousing, production, human resources, packing and shipping. Such activity sub-systems relate together in flows of physical items and information.
  • Any activity systems infrastructure will rely on an associated information systems infrastructure. We may distinguish between the back-end ( core transaction processing information systems supporting the internal process of an organisation ) and front-end ( information system which interacts with internal or external stakeholders of the organisation ) information systems infrastructure. – information systems infrastructure = entire make up of an organisation’s information systems
  • Sales order processing is an information system that communicates with a customer-side inventory management system. This is necessary to check the availability of finished goods for the customer. It will also pass processed orders to an outbound logistics system which dispatches goods to customers matching original sales orders. The customer is notified of the form and timing of intended delivery.
  • Order entry is a key process that interfaces to the organisation’s customers. Order entry captures the key information needed to process a customer order. Traditionally, orders might be expected to arrive through the post or over the telephone line. More recently orders may be sent electronically and come over electronic data interchange (EDI) links or via the Internet. Normally the order entry system would make an enquiry of the stock control system to check that suitable quantities of the desired item are available. If an order item cannot be filled then a substitute item might be suggested or a back order generated. This back order will be filled later when stock is replenished. A notification of a confirmed, partially filled or back order would be supplied to the customer.
  • Most businesses have several forms of stock or inventory. These include raw materials, materials for packing, finished goods and parts for maintenance of products. Stock control or inventory management information systems are designed to record information about this material flow. The objective for most businesses is to minimise the amount of stock held whilst ensuring optimal performance of other systems such as manufacturing or production.
  • Purchases may be generated in two ways. The inventory management system itself may generate an automatic purchase order if the level of a stock item falls below a certain level. Most medium to large organisations will have a purchasing or procurement unit. Staff in this unit will be generating purchase orders on the basis of orders it receives from the inventory management system or from requests from staff for those items not included within the general remit of inventory management. Purchase orders will be produced by purchase order handling and then sent to relevant suppliers. JIT
  • Most financial information systems are divided up into three major sub-systems: accounts receivable, accounts payable and general ledger. The information store used by the accounts receivable system is generally called a sales ledger because it records financial details of all amounts owed by customers to the organisation. The information store used by the accounts payable system is sometimes called the purchase ledger because it stores details of all monies owed to suppliers by the organisation. A third accounting system called a general ledger system is used to record details of all the financial transactions relevant to an organisation: income, expenditure and assets. It hence receives information from accounts payable, accounts receivable and inventory management systems.
  • Remember: these are all Information Systems Infrastructure systems e.g. Sales order processing, inventory management, purchase order processing, financial systems, payroll All backend systems
  • Payroll produces two primary outputs: some payment to the employee, and a record (payslip or pay advice) of the details of the payments made. The key input into a payroll system is some information of the work undertaken during a given time period such as a week or month. These details may be collected on time-sheets sent on from operational departments or may be automatically generated from a production scheduling and control system. The payroll system will need to access information stored on each employee such as pay rates, tax details etc. to produce given pay advices. Periodically, the payroll system will update the general ledger system with the financial costs of labour.
  • Around the core back-end information systems a number of front-end information systems will exist. Such systems face the major stakeholders of the business: managers, employees, customers and suppliers. Hence, we refer to such information systems in terms of four groups: management information systems, employee-facing information systems, customer-facing information systems and supplier-facing information systems.
  • Management information systems (MIS) are used particularly by some operational layer of management to monitor the state of the organisation at any one time. From an MIS, managers would be expected to retrieve information about current production levels, number of orders achieved, current labour costs and other relevant managerial information.
  • A diagram of an information system for outbound logistics is included. Shipment planning determines which orders will be filled and from which location they will be shipped. The system produces two outputs: a shipment plan which indicates how and when each order is to be filled and a picking list which is used by warehouse staff to select the desired goods from the warehouse. Shipment execution supports the work of the shipping function and is used to coordinate the flow of goods from the business to customers. The system will produce a shipping note that is attached to each despatch of goods. It also passes on details of the shipment to invoicing. Invoicing systems take the information supplied on shipping and produces invoices to customers using information stored about customers, orders, products and prices. Invoices may be sent at time of shipment or some time thereafter.
  • Customer-facing information systems support demand-chain activities and typically interface between back-end information systems such as sales order processing, inventory management and the customer. Traditional customer-facing information systems include sales, marketing, outbound logistics and after-sales systems. Recently, there has been increased emphasis on integrating such systems together to form a customer relationship management (CRM) or customer chain management information system (CCM).
  • Supplier-facing information systems support supply chain activities. Traditional supplier-facing systems include inbound logistics and procurement and typically interface with back-end information systems such as purchase order processing, finance and inventory management. Not surprisingly, given the symmetric nature of buy-side and sell-side activities there has been increased emphasis on integrating supplier-facing information systems together to form an integrated supply chain management or supplier relationship management system.
  • Employee-facing information systems support the internal value chain within organisations. Typical employee-facing information systems include human resource management and production control systems and they are likely to interact with key back-end information systems such as payroll.
  • This consists of definitions of information need and activities involved in the collection, storage, dissemination and use of information within the organisation.
  • Information systems

    1. 1. Information Systems Thanks to the work of P Beynon-Davies
    2. 2. Information systems <ul><li>Information systems existed in organisations before the invention of modern ICT – so they do not need modern ICT to exist </li></ul><ul><li>Historical cases provide distance from modern ICT, allowing us to </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Consider what constitutes an information system, and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Understand important differences between information systems and ICT systems </li></ul></ul><ul><li>In the modern, global and complex organisational world, most information systems rely on hardware, software, data and communication technology </li></ul>
    3. 3. Table 4.1: Examples of historical information, information systems, information technology and human activity systems
    4. 4. Figure 4.1: Information system modelling constructs <ul><li>This modelling technique uses four </li></ul><ul><li>main constructs: </li></ul><ul><li>Agents </li></ul><ul><li>Information flows </li></ul><ul><li>Information stores </li></ul><ul><li>Processes (information-handling) </li></ul>IS modelling constructs
    5. 5. Figure 4.2: An information systems model of the RAF early warning network
    6. 6. Infrastructure <ul><li>Organised activity requires infrastructure </li></ul><ul><li>Infrastructure consists of systems of social organisation and technology that support human activity </li></ul><ul><li>In business there are four layers of infrastructure: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Activity systems infrastructure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Information infrastructure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Information systems infrastructure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>ICT infrastructure </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Each of these layers is critically dependent on the layer below it </li></ul>
    7. 7. Figure 4.3: Levels of infrastructure
    8. 8. Activity systems infrastructure <ul><li>The activity systems infrastructure shown on the next slide consists of a number of activity sub-systems , eg sales, after-sales, marketing and purchasing </li></ul><ul><li>These activity sub-systems relate together in flows of physical items and information </li></ul>
    9. 9. Figure 4.4: Activity systems infrastructure of a typical manufacturing organisation
    10. 10. Figure 4.5: Information flows between core back-end information systems <ul><li>An activity systems infrastructure relies on an associated information systems infrastructure </li></ul><ul><li>An information systems infrastructure can be a back-end or front-end system </li></ul>
    11. 11. Figure 4.6: Sales order processing <ul><li>An information system that communicates with a customer-side inventory management system </li></ul><ul><li>Necessary to check the availability of finished goods for the customer </li></ul><ul><li>Passes processed orders to an outbound logistics system which dispatches goods to customers matching original sales orders </li></ul><ul><li>The customer is notified of the form and timing of intended delivery </li></ul>Sales order processing
    12. 12. Order entry <ul><li>A key process that interfaces to the organisation’s customers </li></ul><ul><li>Captures the key information needed to process a customer order </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Orders might arrive through the post or over the phone – or electronically via electronic data interchange (EDI) links or the Internet </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Normally the order entry system would make an enquiry of the stock control system to check that the item is available </li></ul><ul><ul><li>If an order item cannot be filled then a substitute might be suggested or a back order generated, to be filled when stock is replenished </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A notification of a confirmed, partially filled or back order would be supplied to the customer </li></ul></ul>
    13. 13. Figure 4.7: Order entry
    14. 14. Supply-side inventory management information system <ul><li>Most businesses have several forms of stock or inventory </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Eg raw materials, materials for packing, finished goods and parts for maintenance of products </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Stock control or inventory management information systems are designed to record information about this material flow </li></ul><ul><li>The objective for most businesses is to minimise the amount of stock held while ensuring optimal performance of other systems, such as manufacturing or production </li></ul>
    15. 15. Figure 4.8: Supply-side inventory management information system
    16. 16. Purchase order processing information system <ul><li>Purchases are generated in two ways: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The inventory management system itself generates an automatic purchase order if the level of a stock item falls below a certain level </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A purchasing or procurement unit generates purchase orders from orders it receives from the inventory management system or from requests from staff for those items not included within the general remit of inventory management </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Purchase orders are produced by purchase order handling and then sent to relevant suppliers </li></ul>
    17. 17. Figure 4.9: Purchase order processing information system
    18. 18. Financial information system <ul><li>Financial information systems have three major sub-systems: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1) accounts receivable 2) accounts payable 3) general ledger </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The information store used by the accounts receivable system is a sales ledger </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Records financial details of all amounts owed by customers to the organisation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The information store used by the accounts payable system is the purchase ledger </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Stores details of all monies owed to suppliers by the organisation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>A general ledger system records details of all financial transactions relevant to an organisation: income, expenditure and assets </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Receives information from accounts payable, accounts receivable and inventory management systems </li></ul></ul>
    19. 19. Figure 4.10: Financial information system
    20. 20. Payroll system <ul><li>Payroll produces two primary outputs : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Payment to the employee </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Payslip or pay advice – a record of the details of payments made </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The key input into a payroll system is information of the work undertaken during a given time period, such as a week or month </li></ul><ul><ul><li>These details are collected on timesheets sent from operational departments or are automatically generated from a production scheduling and control system </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The payroll system accesses information stored on each employee, eg pay rates, tax details, to produce pay advices </li></ul><ul><li>The payroll system periodically updates the general ledger system with the financial costs of labour </li></ul>
    21. 21. Figure 4.11: Payroll system
    22. 22. Front-end information systems <ul><li>A number of front-end information systems exist around the core back-end information systems </li></ul><ul><li>Such systems face the major stakeholders of the business: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Managers, employees, customers and suppliers </li></ul></ul><ul><li>So these information systems are referred to as: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Management-facing information systems </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Employee-facing information systems </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Customer-facing information systems </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Supplier-facing information systems </li></ul></ul></ul>
    23. 23. Figure 4.12: Back-end and front-end information systems infrastructure
    24. 24. Management information systems <ul><li>Management information systems (MIS) are used by an operational layer of management to monitor the state of the organisation at any one time </li></ul><ul><li>From an MIS, managers can retrieve information about current production levels, number of orders achieved, current labour costs and other relevant managerial information </li></ul>
    25. 25. Figure 4.13: Management information systems
    26. 26. Outbound logistics information system <ul><li>Shipment planning determines which orders will be filled and from which location they will be shipped </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The system produces two outputs: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>A shipment plan - indicates how and when each order is to be filled </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>A picking list - used by warehouse staff to select the desired goods from the warehouse </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Shipment execution supports the work of the shipping function and coordinates the flow of goods from the business to customers </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The system: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Produces a shipping note that is attached to each despatch of goods </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Passes details of the shipment to invoicing </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Invoicing systems take information supplied re shipping and produce invoices for customers using information stored about customers, orders, products and prices </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Invoices may be sent at time of shipment or sometime afterwards </li></ul></ul>
    27. 27. Figure 4.14: Outbound logistics information system
    28. 28. Customer-facing information systems <ul><li>Customer-facing information systems </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Support demand-chain activities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interface between back-end information systems (eg sales order processing, inventory management) and the customer </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Traditional customer-facing information systems include </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sales, marketing, outbound logistics and after-sales systems </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Recently, there is increased emphasis on integrating such systems to form a customer relationship management or customer chain management information system </li></ul>
    29. 29. Figure 4.15: Customer-facing information systems
    30. 30. Supplier-facing information systems <ul><li>Supplier-facing information systems support supply chain activities </li></ul><ul><li>Traditional supplier-facing systems: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Include inbound logistics and procurement </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interface with back-end information systems, such as purchase order processing, finance and inventory management </li></ul></ul><ul><li>There has been increased emphasis on integrating supplier-facing information systems to form an integrated supply chain management or supplier relationship management system </li></ul>
    31. 31. Figure 4.16: Supplier-facing information systems
    32. 32. Figure 4.17: Employee-facing information systems <ul><li>Employee-facing information systems </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Support the internal value chain within organisations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Include human resource management and production control systems </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interact with key back-end information systems such as payroll </li></ul></ul>
    33. 33. Figure 4.18: Part of a company ’ s information infrastructure
    34. 34. Ontology Borrowed from philosophy meaning a systematic account or model of an area of existence – logicians refer to as Universe (Domain) of Discourse e.g. In organisations = employees, products, customers and suppliers.
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