System Analysis Fact Finding Methods

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Four different methods of collecting information about the previous system.

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System Analysis Fact Finding Methods

  1. 1. The Systems Life Cycle TWITTER.COM/MOSHIKUR
  2. 2. Systems Analysis  The process of investigation of a system’s operation with a view to changing it to new requirements or improving its current working.
  3. 3. NEED FOR SYSTEMS ANALYSIS Systems analysis will identify 1. outputs and processing needed. 2. data required to provide this processing and output. 3. role of people in the process. 4. security aspects to ensure the efficient continuation of the business. 5. costs of providing the system.
  4. 4. THE ROLE OF THE SYSTEMS ANALYST  Liaison with senior management and the computer manager on the need for new/improved systems.  Begin the implementation by convening a meeting of the new system designers.  Investigate aspects of the business and produce a Feasibility Report   Consult with the users who are using the current system. Order Hardware and any structural/electrical wiring changes needed to buildings.  Supervise testing of new programs. User training with programs.  Design all aspects of a new system. Report on developments to the board and identify any likely changes needed/problems discovered as a result of investigations. Produce a systems specification.  Supervise completion of documentation.  Acceptance tests. Changeover. Handover  Monitoring of existing systems. Regular reviews to see if changes are needed.  Supervise maintenance and inclusion of new requirements.
  5. 5. INVOLVEMENT OF OTHER STAFF 1. Departmental managers & board. Initiate new systems. 2. Departmental managers. Brief systems analyst on departmental needs, identify key processes, documents and key workers. 3. Users. Assist manager and systems analyst in providing information about current systems . Identify particular individual needs of a new system. Undertake training from initial outlines of the new system to specific training on using it. 4. IT Technical staff. Installing and testing new equipment. 5. Development Programmers. Initial briefing about the whole new system, oneto-one briefing about individuals own designated tasks. Keep systems analyst updated on progress and problems. Assist with testing of the new system. Assist with training users. Provide documentation. 6. Maintenance Programmer(s). Become familiar with all programs including one not written by the programmer. Perform changes as required as a priority.
  6. 6. “ Collecting Information FIRSRT STAGE There are four methods of doing this: ”
  7. 7.  1 Observation The aim of observation is to find out what actually happens, not what the workers think observers expect to see. The point of observation is to see who does what in an organisation and what information they do it with. By simply watching people working it is also fairly straightforward to watch how data flow around a system. Observers have to be careful of the Hawthorne effect. This is where workers modify their behaviour because they know they are being watched.
  8. 8. Observation Advantages Disadvantages  Data gathered can be very reliable  Can see exactly what is being done in complex tasks  Relatively inexpensive compared with other techniques  Can do work measurements       People may perform differently when being observed Work observed may not be representative of normal conditions Timing can be inconvenient Interruptions Some tasks not always performed the same way May observe wrong way of doing things
  9. 9. Observation Guidelines  Determine the who, what, where, when, why, and how of the observation.  Obtain permission from appropriate supervisors.  Inform those who will be observed of the purpose of the observation.  Keep a low profile.  Take notes.  Review observation notes with appropriate individuals.  Don't interrupt the individuals at work.  Don't focus heavily on trivial activities.  Don't make assumptions.
  10. 10. 2 Examination of documents  All documents which are used within a system need to be examined. These will be eventually duplicated or replaced with alternative versions or even discarded in the new system.
  11. 11. The types of document which need to be examined are:  Data capture forms  System documentation  Business reports  Invoices  Bills  Letters etc.
  12. 12. 3 Questionnaires The use of questionnaires is a very popular method of fact finding. A great deal of time is spent on preparing questionnaires in order that the right type of question is asked in order that the most relevant information is gathered. Free-format questionnaire – a questionnaire designed to offer the respondent greater latitude in the answer. A question is asked, and the respondent records the answer in the space provided after the question. Fixed-format questionnaire – a questionnaire containing questions that require selecting an answer from predefined available responses.
  13. 13. Questionnaires Advantages  Often can be answered quickly Disadvantages  Return rate is often low  No guarantee that an individual will answer all questions  People can complete at their convenience  Relatively inexpensive way to gather data from a large number  No opportunity to reword or explain misunderstood questions  Allow for anonymity   Responses can be tabulated quickly Cannot observe body language  Difficult to prepare
  14. 14. Types of Fixed-Format Questions • Multiple-choice questions • Rating questions • Ranking questions Rank the following transactions according to the amount of time you spend processing them. ___ % new customer orders ___ % order cancellations The implementation of quality discounts ___ % order modifications would cause an increase in customer orders. ___ % payments ___ Strongly agree ___ Agree Is the current accounts ___ No opinion receivable report that you ___ Disagree receive useful? ___ Strongly disagree ___ Yes
  15. 15. Developing a Questionnaire 1. Determine what facts and opinions must be collected and from whom you should get them. 2. Based on the facts and opinions sought, determine whether free- or fixed-format questions will produce the best answers. 3. Write the questions. 4. Test the questions on a small sample of respondents. 5. Duplicate and distribute the questionnaire.
  16. 16.  Objective:  Find facts  Verify facts 4 Interviews  Clarify facts  Generate enthusiasm An interview can take more time to organise and it is extremely difficult to repeat so it is vital that the questions asked are the right ones.  Get the end-user involved  Identify requirements  Solicit ideas and opinions The personal interview is generally recognized as the most important and most often used fact-finding technique.
  17. 17. Types of Interviews and Questions Unstructured interview –conducted with only a general goal or subject in mind and with few, if any, specific questions. The interviewer counts on the interviewee to provide a framework and direct the conversation. Structured interview –interviewer has a specific set of questions to ask of the interviewee. Open-ended question – question that allows the interviewee to respond in any way. Closed-ended question – a question that restricts answers to either specific choices or short, direct responses.
  18. 18. Interviews Advantages  Give analyst opportunity to motivate interviewee to respond freely and openly  Allow analyst to probe for more feedback  Permit analyst to adapt or reword questions for each individual  Can observe nonverbal communication Disadvantages  Time-consuming  Success highly dependent on analyst's human relations skills  May be impractical due to location of interviewees
  19. 19. Sample Interview Guide
  20. 20. Sample Interview Guide (concluded)
  21. 21. A Fact-Finding Strategy 1. Learn from existing documents, forms, reports, and files. 2. If appropriate, observe the system in action. 3. Given all the facts that already collected, design and distribute questionnaires to clear up things that aren’t fully understood. 4. Conduct interviews (or group work sessions). 5. (Optional). Build discovery prototypes for any functional requirements that are not understood or for requirements that need to be validated. 6. Follow up to verify facts.

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