Chapter 2


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Chapter 2

  1. 1. Chapter 2IT Support Systems: Concepts and Management 1
  2. 2. Learning objectives• Define information system• Types of Information System• Describe and contrast Transaction Processing System and Functional Information System• Identify major enterprise internal support systems and relate them to managerial functions 2
  3. 3. • Describe support of IT along the supply chain in using ERP and CRM• Discuss information infrastructure and architecture• Compare client server architecture, mainframe based legacy systems and P2P architecture• Describe different types of web based information systems and their functionalities 3
  4. 4. • Describe Software-as-a-service (SaaS) and software oriented architecture (SOA) environments• describe how Information resources are managed• Describe roles of ISD and end users 4
  5. 5. Information System: concept and definition• IS- one that collects, processes, stores analyzes and disseminates data and information for a specific purpose• Components: – Hardware – Software – Data – People – Procedure – Application Program• Collection of application programs in a single department is 5 usually considered as a departmental Information System
  6. 6. Data, Information and Knowledge• Data – elementary description of things, events, activities and transactions that are recorded, classified and stored – Not organized to convey any specific meaning• Information – organized data so that they have meaning and value to the recipient 6
  7. 7. • Knowledge – organized and processed data to convey understanding, experience, accumulated learning and expertise as they apply to the current problem and activity 7
  8. 8. Classification and types of IS Classification of Information System By ByOrganizational Levels type of support provided 8
  9. 9. Classification by organizational levels• Can be stand alone but usually they are interconnected Levels of Information systems 9
  10. 10. • Personal and productivity systems – Small systems built to support many individuals – Known as Personal Information Management (PIM) – Intend to support the activities of individuals to ease their work or life – Through acquisition, organization, maintenance, retrieval and sharing of information 10
  11. 11. – E.g. PDA, calculator– Designed to increase our productivity and satisfaction– Abundant in organizations, inexpensive and have fairly standard capabilities 11
  12. 12. • Transaction Processing System – Supports repetitive information processing tasks such as – Periodic financial, accounting and other routine business activities – Supports the monitoring, collection, storage, processing and dissemination of the organization’s basic business transactions 12
  13. 13. – Provides input to other IS– Critical to success of any organization since they support core operations– collects data periodically or in real time 13
  14. 14. • E.g. of TPS – In retail stores, data flows from Point of Sale to database – Reduces the level of inventory – Increases the revenue in company’s cash position 14
  15. 15. • Functional & Management Information Systems – cover some repetitive and some occasional activities – Major functional information systems are • Accounting • Finance • Production/operation • Marketing &sales • Human resource management 15
  16. 16. – FIS ensure that business strategies come to fruition in an efficient manner– Provides periodic reports on operational efficiency, effectiveness and productivity– Two types of functional Information Systems: • Those support managers (MIS) – By providing periodic reports, summaries, comparisons – Helps to make better decisions • Those support other employees (analysts, other staff) in 16 functional areas
  17. 17. • Enterprise Information Systems – EIS support business processes that are performed by two or more departments – Business process is a collection of activities performed to accomplish a clearly defined goal and may cross departmental / organizational boundaries – EIS follows such processes and usually integrate tasks done in different departments – E.g. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) 17
  18. 18. Process A:Typical TPSProcess B:ProcurementProcess C:CustomerServicesProcess D:Order takingn fulfilling 18
  19. 19. • Interorganizational systems – Connect two or more organizations – E.g. worldwide airline reservation system – Most common are those that connect buyers and sellers 19
  20. 20. Departmental, enterprise and inter-organizational information systems 20
  21. 21. • Global Information Systems – IOS that connect companies located in two or more countries – E.g. many e-commerce systems• Very large and special systems – Include many subsystems of the previous levels – Industry specific systems 21
  22. 22. Classification based on the type of support provided• MIS – Middle managers – Provides routine information for planning, organizing, and controlling operations in functional areas• Office Automation System (OAS) – Office workers – Increases productivity of office workers 22
  23. 23. • CAD/CAM – Engineers and drafts people – Allows engineers to design and test prototypes – Transfers specifications to manufacturing facilities• Communication and collaboration systems – All employees – Enables employees, partners and customers to interact and work together efficiently 23
  24. 24. • Desktop publishing systems – Office workers – Combines text, photos, graphics to produce professional quality documents• Decision support systems (DSS) – Decision makers, managers – Combines models and data to solve semi structured problems with extensive user involvements 24
  25. 25. • Document management systems – Office workers – Automates flow of electronic documents• Group Support Systems (GSS) – Supports working processes of groups of people 25
  26. 26. • Expert systems (ES) – Knowledge workers, nonexperts – Provide stored knowledge of experts to non-experts and decision recommendations based on built-in expertise• Knowledge work systems (KWS) – Managers, knowledge workers – Supports the gathering, organizing and use of organizational knowledge 26
  27. 27. • Neural networks, Data mining – Knowledge workers, professionals – Learn from historical cases, even with vague or incomplete information• Business Intelligence (BI) – Decision makers, managers, knowledge workers – Gathers and uses large amount of data for analysis by business analytics & intelligent systems 27
  28. 28. • Mobile computing systems – Mobile employees – Supports working outside the physical boundaries of organization• Automated Decision Support Systems (ADS) – Frontline employees, middle managers – Supports customer care employees and sales people to make quick real time decisions 28
  29. 29. Relationship between IS• Each IS has sufficiently unique characteristics• There is information flow among these entities and systems• E.g. MIS extracts information from TPS and BI receives information from Data warehouse and MIS• As the technology changes, interrelationship and coordination among the different types of systems continue to evolve 29
  30. 30. Interrelated Support Systems 30
  31. 31. How IT supports people and organizational activities • Organizational activities – Operational • Deal with day-to-day activities of an organization • E.g. assigning task to employees and recording their working hours • Short term in nature • Supporting IS are TPS, MIS and mobile systems • Used by supervisors, operators and clerical 31 employees
  32. 32. – Managerial • Also called tactical activities • Deal with middle management activities such as short term planning, organizing and control • Middle managers can get quick answers to queries from such systems using BI reporting and query capabilities 32
  33. 33. 33
  34. 34. – strategic • Activities or decisions that deal with situations that may significantly change the manner in which business is done • Involve long-range planning • E.g. introducing new product, expanding business by acquiring supporting businesses, Moving operations to the foreign countries • From such long range planning, companies derive their short range plans, budgeting and resource 34 allocation
  35. 35. • Strategic activities help organization in other two ways: – Strategic response activities • React quickly to a major competitor’s action or to any other significant change in the enterprise’s environment • e.g. Kodak could beat Japanese company in developing the disposable camera 35
  36. 36. – Innovative strategy (initiator of change) • Instead of waiting for a competitor to introduce a major change or innovation, an organization can be the initiator of change 36
  37. 37. Who performs what activities and how IT supports them? 37
  38. 38. • Executives and Managers – Responsible for strategic decisions – Support systems: • BI (Business Intelligence) • Corporate Performance Management (CPM) 38
  39. 39. • Middle Managers – Tactical decisions – Support systems: • Functional Information systems • MIS 39
  40. 40. • Staff Support – Advisors and assistants to top and middle level managers – Knowledge workers – Create information and knowledge as a part of their work and integrate it into business – E.g. financial and marketing analysts, production planners, lawyers, accountants – Support systems: • Search engines 40 • Expert systems
  41. 41. • Lower level managers, frontline employees – Operational decisions – Support systes: • ADS • Functional IS • MIS 41
  42. 42. • Clerical staff – Use, manipulate or disseminate information – Data workers – E.g. bookkeepers, secretaries – Support systems: • Office automation • Communication systems • Document management 42
  43. 43. How IT supports supply chain and enterprise systems? • Supply chain – concept describing the flow of – materials, – information, – money and – services from raw material suppliers through factories and warehouses to the end customers 43
  44. 44. A simple supply chain 44
  45. 45. • Supply chain is difficult to manage since it needs to coordinate – Several business partners – Internal corporate departments – Numerous business processes – Many customers 45
  46. 46. • IT support of supply chains is divided according to three segments of supply chain – Support of internal supply chain – Support of upstream supply chain – Support of downstream supply chain 46
  47. 47. Support of internal supply chain• Involves TPS & other enterprise information systems & functional information systems• Special SCM softwares are available – E.g. inventory management, production scheduling 47
  48. 48. Support of upstream supply chain• To improve procurement activities and relationships with suppliers Support of downstream supply chain•Supports downstream supply chain in two areas •Customer relationships •Order taking and shipments to customers 48
  49. 49. Information systems infrastructure & architecture• Information infrastructure – Consists of • the physical facilities, services and management that support all shared computing resources in organization • Their integration, operation, documentation, maintenance & management 49
  50. 50. – 5 major components • Computer hardware • Software • Network & communication facilities • Databases and data workers • Information management personnel 50
  51. 51. Information technology architecture• A high level map or plan of information assets in an organization including the physical design of the building that holds the hardware• On the web, IT architecture includes the content and organization of the site and the interface to support browsing and search capabilities 51
  52. 52. • Guide for current operations and blueprint for future directions• Creating IT infrastructure is a cyclic process which is driven by business architecture which describes organizational plans, visions, objectives and problems and the information required to support them 52
  53. 53. Emerging computing environments: SaaS• SaaS (Software as a Service)• Popular enterprise model in which computing resources are made available to the user when they are needed• Also referred to as SaaS, On demand computing, Utility computing or hosted services• Instead of buying and installing expensive and annoying packaged enterprise applications, user can access them over a network with a browser 53
  54. 54. • No need to buy h/w or s/w• Paid for through a fixed subscription fees or payable per an actual usage fee• Offer standardized, componentized, common & lower cost s/w services which can be sourced at will from some type of service provider 54
  55. 55. Why SaaS was needed?• Enterprises are challenged of being able to meet fluctuating demands efficiently to become an adaptive enterprise• To overcome this challenge, SaaS like models were developed• enterprise’s demand on computing resources can vary drastically from time to time• Maintaining sufficient resources to meet peak requirements can be costly 55
  56. 56. • If enterprises cut the cost by maintaining only minimal computing resources, there will not be sufficient resources to meet the peak requirements• So to balance the increasing requirements & cost of resources, SaaS is developed 56
  57. 57. Who should be the provider of these services?• Either a s/w developer/host such IBM or Oracle or• Third party intermediary such as an application service provider 57
  58. 58. Implementing SaaS- a utility computing concept• Utility computing is computing that have – Computing resources available on demand from virtual utilities around the globe – Always on and highly available – Secure – Efficiently metered – Priced in a pay-as-you-use basis – Dynamically scaled – Self healing – Easy to manage 58
  59. 59. • If utility computing becomes successful, all s/ws will become a service and be sold as a utility one day• Limitations – Cost (can be advantage or disadvantage) – what the client needs and what the provider offers arent in alignment – Reliability • utility computing company is in financial trouble or goes out of business – Hard to do in heterogeneous data centers – Works better for some applications than for others – Needs extra security (attractive targets for hackers) 59 – Distribution of software is different from distribution of utilities
  60. 60. Grid computing• Conventional networks are designed to provide communication among devices• The same n/ws can be used to support the concept of grid computing in which – Unused processing cycles of all computers in a given network can be harnessed to create powerful computing capabilities• Grid computing coordinates the use of a large no. of servers & storage, acting as one computer• Saves money and resources• Candidates for grid computing – Companies doing multi-hour-long processing jobs 60 – Making complex scientific & mathematical computations
  61. 61. Mobile computing & mobile commerce• Computing paradigm designed for mobile employees and others who wish to have a real-time connection from anywhere between a mobile device and other computing environments• M-commerce is a commerce in a wireless environment such as through wireless devices like cellular phones & PDAs• Enables users to access internet without needing to find a place to plug-in – E.g. smart phones 61• Emerging mobile technology: pervasive computing
  62. 62. • In pervasive computing, computation becomes part of environment• Computation will be embedded in things, not in computers• Improves efficiency in work & living tasks• Enriches the quality of life through art, design & entertainment 62
  63. 63. Service Oriented Architecture (SOA)• Enterprises need to be – adaptive and – respond more quickly to consumer demands & at the same time – ensure security, data integrity & regulatory compliance• Current architecture & infrastructure may not support the level of flexibility needed in rapidly changing business environment 63
  64. 64. • Solution: don’t form a monolithic rigid solution,• systems are developed as federation or composite applications which are tied together only at the point of execution• This enables alternative s/w components to be substituted between each use of a system allowing much greater flexibility 64
  65. 65. • Thus the basic idea behind the SOA is to reuse & reconnect existing IT assets/ services rather than more time consuming & costly developments of new systems• In SO environment, organizations make resources available to participants via a n/w as independent services that can be accessed in a standardized way using web services• SaaS at its highest level, must be delivered as a SOA & must embody web services 65
  66. 66. • Advantages of SOA – Reduced integration cost – Improved business/IT alignment – Extension & leveraging of existing IT investments – Faster time to assemble new applications – Lower IT maintenance cost 66
  67. 67. Web services• Self-contained, self-describing business & consumer modular applications• Delivered over internet• User can select and combine through any device (from PC to mobile phones)• By using set of shared protocols & standards these applications share data & services without requiring human beings to translate the conversion 67
  68. 68. • Results in real time links among the online processes of different systems & companies• Fosters new interactions among businesses & create more user friendly web for consumers• Provide inexpensive & rapid solutions for application integration, access to information & application development 68
  69. 69. Components of web services 69
  70. 70. • Service – Means by which the needs of consumer are fulfilled with the capabilities of s/w provided• Consumer – Function that consumes the result of a service provided by provider• Provider – Function that performs a service in response to a request by a consumer• Registry (directory) – Contains all the information regarding registered services 70 including detailed descriptions
  71. 71. Working of web services• Step 1: providers of services publish (register) their services in the registry• Step 2: consumers search them in registry either private or public• Step 3: once consumer finds a match• Step 4: he sends a request to the service provider to get the specific programmed service• Step 5: provider provides the services to the customer 71
  72. 72. Virtualization• Separates business applications & data from h/w resources• This allows companies to pool hardware resources & assign them to applications as needed• Types of virtualization – Storage virtualization – N/w virtualization 72 – H/w virtualization
  73. 73. Storage virtualization• Pooling of physical storage from multiple n/w storage devices into a single storage device• Which is then managed from a central console 73
  74. 74. N/w virtualization• Combines the available resources in a n/w by splitting the n/w load into manageable parts• Each of these parts can be assigned to a particular server on network 74
  75. 75. h/w virtualization• Use of s/w to emulate h/w or a total computer environment other than the one in which s/w is actually running• It allows a piece of h/w to run multiple OS images at once• Sometimes called as virtual machine 75
  76. 76. Advantages of virtualization• Increases the flexibility of IT assets• Allows companies to merge IT infrastructure• Reduce maintenance & administration cost• Prepares for strategic IT initiatives such as grid, utility computing and SOA 76
  77. 77. Managerial Issues• Which IT resources are managed by whom? – Responsibility of Information resource management is divided between two entities – Information System Department (ISD) • Responsible for corporate level shared resources – End users • Responsible for departmental resources• The role of the IS Department – Changing from purely technical to managerial and 77 strategic
  78. 78. Managerial Issues (contd..)• The transition to a digital enterprise• How to deal with the outsourcing and utility computing trends• Ethical issues 78