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Business and IS Performance ( IS 6010 ). MBS BIS 2010 / 2011 14 th October 2010. Fergal Carton ([email protected]) Accounting Finance and Information Systems. Last week 1. Credit Suisse performance parameters Return on investment (customer), bonus (fund manager)

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Business and is performance is 6010

Business and IS Performance(IS 6010)

MBS BIS 2010 / 2011

14th October 2010

Fergal Carton ([email protected])

Accounting Finance and Information Systems

Last week 1
Last week 1

Credit Suisse performance parameters

Return on investment (customer), bonus (fund manager)

What would be considered reasonable ROI from a customer perspective? Is this the same for a fund manager?

Return is related to level of risk taken

Overall corporate performance objective is broken down into sub-objectives for managers

This process of splitting objectives to individual managers is what Mason and Swanson (1979) are investigating

Feedback on Mason and Swanson (CMR, 1979)

Scientific Measurement not enough for management decision support (softer information required)

Not “user specific“

Metrics depend on your position (manager, customer, shareholder, employee, …)

Last week 2
Last week 2

Managers have to make decisions regarding solutions to performance issues

These decisions necessarily engage the resources of the firm

Measurement systems do not support this level of decision making

Class exercise: mobile phone sales down 25% with respect to target for quarter, what kind of decisions required

Knowledge of overall market performance might explain poor performance

Change targets? Try telling your boss that!

Act on demand by using discounts, bundles, promotion, marketing

In any case solutions involve committing resources (money, people, …)

What type of information support would a manager require to make such decisions?

Collaboration / conflict arises: Sales versus Finance view

Last week 3
Last week 3

Apple reporting exercise

Steve Jobs about to report results

You are asked to provide gift card revenue figures for Cork

Channels used to sell gift cards eg. HMV

Denominations sold (pre-set values or user definable?)

Do retailers pay for cards up front?

At what point are Apple able to recognise revenue from sale?

What is the impact for sales reporting?

Make up of actual spend of gift card by product not known

Inventory impact versus non-inventory?

Apple sales process
Apple sales process

An increasing range of channels

Apple stores (eg. ATMac, Penrose Wharf)

Major accounts (Dixons, Curry’s, Fnac, HMV, Virgin, …)

Retailer (Tesco, O2 stores, Argos, …)

Indirect distributor (Russian market?)

An increasing range of products


iTunes gift cards



Accessories for all media players and phones






Co ordination strategies
Co-ordination strategies

  • Co-ordination consists of:

    • Protocols, tasks and decision mechanisms to achieve concerted action between interdependent units (Thompson, 1967)

    • Decomposing goals to activities (Malone & Crowston, 1990)

    • People, resources and systems (Hepp & Roman, 07)

  • Two key co-ordination strategies:

    • Centralisation of decision making (purpose agenda)

    • Standardisation of process (efficiency agenda)

  • Inherent tension between individual and organisation

  • Strategies impact flexibility of organisation differently

  • IT only provides means of co-ordination, not reason

How can data be shared
How can data be shared

  • Face to face

  • Hard copy

  • Soft copy or email

  • Interface between applications

  • Access to a shared database


  • Virtualisation: capturing & storing data relating to changes in the physical environment in an information system

  • A measure of the degree to which information systems can reflect business reality

  • Pre-supposes a structure (database), as data captured is related to a logical entity

Basic flows
Basic flows




Basic flows1
Basic flows




Inventory common denominator
Inventory = common denominator




Erp integration demand supply
ERP integration: demand & supply







Types of data 1
Types of data 1

  • Volume data (production)

  • consumption data (raw material, packaging…)

  • personnel data

  • maintenance data

  • time related measurements

  • productivity data

  • All form the basis of the calculations used to monitor manufacturing activities

Type of data 2
Type of data 2

  • Primary data:

    • taken straight from the floor (input and output)

    • e.g. production, consumption, labour, maintenance

    • ad-hoc reports - e.g. accidents, defects

  • Secondary data or calculated data:

    • allocated costs

    • productivity

    • pay bonuses

    • variances

  • High level data:

    • investigations of variances

    • soft information about staff morale etc...

Type of data soft information
Type of data: soft information

  • Data collection -

    • Grapevine

    • factory tours (talking and observing)

  • Data storage -

    • managers’ minds

    • special reports

  • Data usage:

    • ad-hoc basis

    • decision making

Production planning and forecast
Production planning and forecast

In theory, it’s simple

  • Sales forecast future demand for products

  • Production plan to meet forecast sales

    But, in real life, there are many contingencies:

  • Sales tend to be optimistic

  • Most businesses exhibit seasonality

  • Customers are unpredictable

  • Forecasts are based on average prices

  • Yield may be poor due to quality issues

How managers do their work
How managers do their work

  • What is happening? Actual

  • What should be happening? Plan

  • What therefore would happen if? What-if?

  • Adjust plan and/or change actual Manage

Criteria for information sharing
Criteria for information sharing

  • Integrity

  • Timing of information exchange

  • Knowing information is up to date

  • Ownership of data

  • Accountability if information is incorrect, incomplete

  • Decision responsibility

Why is one truth so hard
Why is “one truth” so hard?

  • Eg. Up to date picture of revenue?

    • Easy bit:

      • all product shipped to date

    • Hard bit:

      • Spares, loaners, replacement machines, …

      • Deduct any current credit notes

      • Add any outstanding debts from previous invoices

      • Apportion revenue from service contract (12 months)

      • Allow for discount to be applied if paid on time

      • Currency exchange rate fluctuations …

    • Revenue recognition “rules”

What does integration mean
What does integration mean?

  • Dearden 72

    • As computer use expands, control is vital

    • Single group of experts design a completely integrated supersystem = absurd

    • Specialist expertise is functional by nature

    • Finance, logistics, sales = different expertise

    • Centralisation of control of systems = dangerous

    • Examine the interfaces

  • Vizard 06

    • Data used to be in disparate databases

    • Data now in databases, file systems, applications, …

    • “One truth” concerning the state of a business process

    • Interdependent business processes (eg. sales & service)

    • Meta-data structures

    • Enterprise Application Integration vs. BI tools

Who benefits
Who benefits?

  • Finance gain greater visibility

  • Manufacturing?

    • Demand may be too unstable for MRP

    • Production planning needs more “nuance”

    • ERP is too literal

    • Much planning still done on Spreadsheets

  • Sales: need of integration

Integration downsides
Integration downsides

  • Response times

  • Vulnerability: single point of failure

  • Limitations on expansion

  • Dependence on single vendor

  • Flexibility to change system

  • Access to basic information is complicated

Integration framework













Performance control

Integration framework