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Chapter 10 Organizing Information Systems and Services. Learning Objectives. When you finish this chapter, you will Understand the different ways in which ISs are deployed in organizations. Be able to list and explain the advantages and disadvantages of each IS architecture.

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learning objectives
Learning Objectives
  • When you finish this chapter, you will
    • Understand the different ways in which ISs are deployed in organizations.
    • Be able to list and explain the advantages and disadvantages of each IS architecture.
    • Know the importance of collaboration between IS managers and line managers, and understand the relationships between the two groups.
    • Be able to describe career paths and responsibilities in the IS field.
information systems architecture and management
Information Systems Architecture and Management
  • Centralized Information Systems Architecture
    • Mainframes dictated IS architecture be centralized
    • Advantages
      • High degree of control
      • Easy to maintain hardware, software, procedure, and operation standards
      • Easy control of access to information
    • Disadvantages
      • Inflexible
      • Lack of customization
information systems architecture and management1

Figure 10.1 In centralized IS architecture, information resources are maintained on one or several large computers that are centrally controlled.

Information Systems Architecture and Management
information systems architecture and management2
Information Systems Architecture and Management
  • Decentralized Information Systems Architecture
    • Allows departments and remote sites independence in organizing and using their ISs
    • Local IS department establishes infrastructure
    • Disadvantages
      • Difficult to share applications and data among units
      • Expensive to maintain and service different systems
information systems architecture and management3

Figure 10.2 In decentralized IS architecture, workers at different sites and departments (A, B, C) use information resources that are dedicated to their site or department.

Information Systems Architecture and Management
information systems architecture and management4
Information Systems Architecture and Management
  • Distributed Information Systems
    • Each unit selects and implements its own system.
    • Remote units can share resources through communication lines.
    • Many organizations changing to distributed architecture.
      • Increased reliability and affordability of data communication and PC technology
information systems architecture and management5
Information Systems Architecture and Management

Figure 10.3 In distributed IS architecture, workers use the information resources of their own site or department, but can also use the resources of other sites or departments through communication lines

information systems architecture and management7
Information Systems Architecture and Management
  • Centralized vs. Decentralized ISs: Advantages and Disadvantages
    • Advantages of Centralized IS Management
      • Standardized hardware and software
      • Easier training
      • Encouragement of common reporting systems
      • Effective planning of shared systems
      • Easier strategic planning
      • Efficient use of IS personnel
      • Accommodation of tight control by top management
information systems architecture and management9
Information Systems Architecture and Management
  • Advantages of Decentralized IS Management
    • Better fit of ISs to business needs
    • Timely responsiveness of IS units to business demands
    • Encouragement of end user application development
    • More innovative use of ISs
    • Support for delegation of authority
information systems architecture and management11
Information Systems Architecture and Management
  • Trends in Information Systems Organization
    • Discarding Big Iron (mainframe computers)
      • Switch to PCs brings distributed IS architecture benefits.
      • Some companies keep mainframe for processing power.
    • Reengineering with Information Technology
      • Effort for breakthrough gains through radical business process and system changes.
      • Almost always leads to integrating IT in all processes.
organizing the is staff
Organizing the IS Staff
  • Central IS Organization
    • Corporate IS team serves all units
    • IS Director oversees departments within IS
      • System development and maintenance
      • Information center
      • Communications
      • Data administration
      • Research and development
    • Involved in virtually every aspect of IT
    • Steering committee oversees IS services
organizing the is staff2
Organizing the IS Staff
  • Functional IS Organization
    • Each unit fulfills IS needs independently.
    • Each business unit has one or several IS professionals who report to the unit manager.
    • Funds come from unit budget.
    • Small central unit can coordinate IS for departments that need help.
organizing the is staff4
Organizing the IS Staff
  • The Best of Both Approaches
    • Many companies use elements of both central and functional IS management.
    • Regardless of IS management, implementation depends on position of highest IS officer.
      • Reports to VP: IS provides technical solutions
      • Reports to CEO: IS more involved in strategic planning
challenges for is managers and line managers
Challenges for IS Managers and Line Managers
  • Line Managers’ Expectations of an IS Unit
    • Broad understanding of business activities
    • Prompt response to information needs
    • Clear explanation of what technology can and can’t do
    • Candid explanations of what IS can and can’t do
    • Honest budgeting
    • Single point of contact
challenges for is managers and line managers1
Challenges for IS Managers and Line Managers
  • IS Manager Expectations of Line Managers
    • Projected list of basic IS needs
    • Clear explanation of business processes that need support once an IS manager is asked to develop a new system
    • What features the business manager wants in the new system once general automation process is set
the information center
The Information Center
  • Coordination and Control
    • Hardware and software purchases
    • Application development
    • Development and use of databases by end users
  • Support
    • Training and response to requests for help
      • Help desk: Troubleshoot on demand
chargeback methods
Chargeback Methods
  • Two ways to treat cost of IS function
    • Part of overhead cost: General shared expense
    • Chargeback system: Units charged for services
  • Service Charges
    • What is chargeable?
      • Personnel hours
      • Computer time
      • External storage space
      • Number of input and output operations
      • Paper output
chargeback methods1
Chargeback Methods
  • Desirable Chargeback Features
    • Accountability
    • Controllability
    • Timeliness
    • Congruence with organizational goals
  • Chargeback Criticism
    • Expense may discourage IT initiatives
    • High rates can be frustrating
  • Overhead Expenditures
    • Research and development
    • Corporation-wide data communications
careers in information systems
Careers inInformation Systems
  • Systems analyst
    • Limited analysis of business needs and ISs
    • Updates and maintains existing ISs
    • Designs new ISs
      • Analyzes system requirements from user input
      • Documents efforts and system features
      • Provides specifications for programmers
    • Agents of change
      • Good persuasion and presentation skills
careers in information systems2
Careers inInformation Systems
  • Database Administrator (DBA)
    • Responsible for database of an organization
      • Planning and design
      • Adoption of DBMSs and 4GLs
      • Physical organization and storage
      • Logical organization
      • Schema development
      • Data dictionary development and maintenance
      • Security measures for access and proper use
      • Failure recovery and back-up measures
      • Updates and data integrity
      • Interfaces of internal databases with other ISs
      • Database personnel management
careers in information systems3
Careers inInformation Systems
  • Telecommunications Manager
    • Responsible for computer networks
      • Acquisition
      • Implementation
      • Management
      • Maintenance
      • Troubleshooting
    • Assesses future needs of the business
careers in information systems4
Careers inInformation Systems
  • Webmaster
    • Creates and maintains Web site and intranet pages
      • Must know Web technology, business strategy, security
  • Chief Information Officer (CIO)
    • Responsible for all aspects of ISs
      • Oversees IS research and development
      • Oversees IS infrastructure development
      • Serves as chief technologist
      • Serves as chief agent of change
careers in information systems6
Careers inInformation Systems
  • Chief Knowledge Officer (CKO)
    • Responsible for finding strategically important knowledge resources
      • Accumulates, organizes, and retrieves information
      • Chief Learning Officer (CLO)
  • Independent Consultant
    • Offers services to companies that lack qualified personnel for specific tasks
ethical and societal issues gasping for it skills
Ethical and Societal IssuesGasping for IT Skills
  • Demand Keeps Growing
    • Projected 2 million additional designers, programmers, and maintenance and repair workers needed over the next seven years
    • 1.8 million computer engineers, computer scientists, and systems analysts needed by 2006
    • Ironically, high demand and benefits not attracting students to IT programs
ethical and societal issues gasping for it skills1
Ethical and Societal IssuesGasping for IT Skills
  • One Strategy That Worked
    • Irish government subsidized tuition for students in technological programs
      • Second largest exporter of software
      • 60 percent of incoming university students enroll in technological programs per year
    • Promoting National IT
      • Should government subsidize technological education?
      • Proponents: Benefits all society
      • Detractors: Objectionable intrusion on personal pursuits and allocation of tax money