Technology / Attributes Of Procedure-Based And Goal-Based Information Activities

Attributes Of Procedure-Based And Goal-Based Information Activities

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Autor:  anton  28 October 2010
Tags:  Attributes,  Procedure,  Information,  Activities
Words: 2118   |   Pages: 9
Views: 722

Ch 1 - McNurin & Sprague

Review Question 10) List several attributes of procedure-based and goal-based information activities. Which do you think are most important? Why?

Attributes of procedure-based information activities include (with examples):

•High volume of transactions – transactions associated with the stock market.

•Low cost (value) per transaction – transactions associated with mechanisms that output to a screen what a customer has bought at the grocery store.

•Focus on process – the steps a worker routinely makes on their terminals to place an order to buy stock for a customer.

•Focus on efficiency – the steps a manager makes to be sure that employees have the right information at their fingertips.

Attributes of goal-based information activities include (with examples):

•Measured by results – a system which counts how many of a certain product has been bought and if in fact the quota has been met for the month.

•Focus on effectiveness – a system that performs up to the standards that its documentation said. This will help the organization and the manager obtain an objective not only more quickly but also more correctly.

•Focus on problems and goals –a system that helps with or outputs data which helps render a problem and ultimately obtains a goal.

The attributes that are most important regarding procedure-based are:

Focus on process –By having a process an organization communicates precise guidelines to help ensure that daily actions and decisions are consistent with organizational values, strategies and objectives.

Focus on efficiency – By having a system or standing plan that describes what actions are to be taken in support of policies.

The attributes that are most important regarding goal-based are:

Focus on effectiveness – Goals clarify what the organization expects and are included in the plan or strategy for doing its work. Even though every good plan is flexible, it also maps the route to a result and or goal. When such a process is done effectively it is usually successful.

Focus on problems and goals – Develop strategies for evaluating the team’s processes and outcomes. When a team sets goals – it uses the team’s purposes as a starting base to define its goals. Goals are a form of clear and desirable performance targets. The basic premise is that task goals can be highly motivating if they are properly set and if they are well managed. Goals can give direction to people in their work to help solve problems.

Discussion Question 2) Do we really need a major change in the way the information system’s function is structured? Aren’t the necessary changes just minor modifications to accommodate normal growth in computer uses?

Yes, I feel we need a major change in the way information systems are structured. We must change with the times and can’t rely on one stagnant function or process. Technology can change very rapidly, so a minor modification may not be enough to change with the times. As technology and business change – IS will change as it has from the 70’s to the 90’s. The case study regarding Mead is a good example as they changed their business structure/model with the times.

Ch 2 - McNurin & Sprague

Discussion Question 1) The definition of a vision is not the responsibility of the CIO. It is the responsibility of the CEO and the other senior executives. Do you agree or disagree? Why?

I disagree because a majority of the vision in today’s market place is technology based. Therefore a CEO and senior executives will not have a good grasp of technology. The power of visualization is helping teams achieve their goals – all members need to understand the team vision, the projected consequence of the work – make sure everyone on the team has a mental picture of what the final result will be like – how it will feel – what it will provide. The CIO will be more vocal to the employees in these aspects then a CEO or upper management.

The five principles of visionary only strengthen my point:

1) Challenge the process – be a pioneer encourages innovation and ideas.

2) Be enthusiastic – inspire others through actions to share the vision

3) Help others to act – Be a team player and support others efforts and talents

4) Set the example – provide a consistent role model for others

5) Celebrate achievements – Use emotion to rally hearts as well as minds

Discussion Question 2) Do you agree that the “rules of the game have changed” enough to warrant redefinition of the CIO’s role. Won’t the primary responsibility continue to be managing IT? Aren’t there other executives that are better prepared and perhaps better motivated to know the business and its vision.

I agree that the “rules of the game have changed” and feel the CIO role will continue to change as technology and business practices come into play. CIO is now not only someone who must understand recommendations for technology but understand business as well. The primary responsibility of IT in the future will be more of a mixture of information technologies and major business practices, which in essence will help with a strategic business unit (SBU).

Other executives are not better prepared because the CIO is the vision who provides over-sight, strategic planning and management direction on all information technology and information infrastructure programs.

Critical Questions:

Ch 1 – McNurin & Sprague

Question 1 – “Information systems are now viewed as system “products” and users have become “customers.” Pg 12

Haven’t information systems always been viewed as system “products” and users “customers” or is this a new concept?

Question 2 – “The wave of the future is applying information technology to goal-based activities, where the enterprise is more important than the process” pg 15

By applying IT to goal based activities is this short changing these processes especially low volume of transactions, high value (cost) per transaction?

Ch 2 – McNurin & Sprague

Question 1 – “Visions are seldom original, Peters notes. A visionary may be the person who focuses attention on an idea at a point in time, but that visionary is likely to have heard it from someone else.” Pg 43

Wouldn’t the visionary see the new idea or concept in their mind and not have heard it from someone else? Or wouldn’t the visionary use the “heard” idea but have the insight to relate the vision to the times and expand and develop the plan?

Question 2 – “Developing a systems architecture is no longer a technical exercise; it is now a strategic business unit.” Pg 48

If developing a system is no longer a technical exercise how does it physically get implemented?

Critical Questions:

Ch 1- Gates

Question 1 – “Some subsidiaries accounted for products from our manufacturing corporation in Ireland based on their cost; others used a percentage of customer price as the cost.” Pg 9

How could subsidiaries in different countries account for products from manufacturing using different basis? It seems this would be an accounting nightmare and make other countries stronger then others.

Question 2 – “Companies should spend less time protecting financial data from employees and more time teaching then to analyze and act on it.” Pg 18

Why should a company give financial data to employees and risk exposing sensitive company data to employees who might not stay with the organization long enough to benefit and may turn the information that is known against the company?

Ch 2 – Gates

Question 1 – “With a third party to handle logistics and with help from our partners for the Big Day events, the plan would entail just two new head counts and cost a total of just $1.5 million.” Pg 30

Do you feel this number of $1.5 million to set up such an event is realistic for a small to mid-size company whose revenue may be in this ballpark?

Question 2 – “To begin creating a digital nervous system, you should first develop an ideal picture of the information you need to run your business and to understand your markets and your competitors” pg 37

Should this form of action be the case – no matter what – even if an organization is not creating a digital nervous system?

Important Points and Why

Ch 1 - McNurin & Sprague

1) “It has become easier for new companies to enter major industries such as airlines, banking, telecommunications, trucking and others because of deregulation.” Pg 6

The three important aspects in today’s IS world are transportation and finance and communications. These aspects have made it so a once small company can now enter a major market and be profitable. A great example of this is currently Turner Broadcasting. Without deregulation one or two companies would have the stronghold in the three above aspects which in turn would hamper the success of other organizations.

2) “Information workers are increasingly mobile. Communication technology has developed to the point where information work can be done anywhere with a laptop computer, cellular telephone, and modem.” Pg 7

This has changed the IS professional (sometimes for good or bad). The good aspect is that it allows work to be done anywhere. The bad aspect is that it is hard for one to get away from work they are always at the disposable of the firm.

3) “Local area networks (LANs) connected to wide area networks (WANs) allow computer connectivity to be at a level akin to that of voice connectivity provided by the worldwide telephone system.” Pg 11

The network changed IS – especially now that the client/server has allowed better processes to be created and managed so that in essence work can be done faster and information can be archived and obtained easier and quicker then ever before.

4) “Information systems are now viewed as system “products” and users have become “customers.” Pg 12

This shows the strength to which IS now has in the market place. By viewing the system as a product, an information systems importance of system quality, information quality and systems success has been recognized as key ingredients in developing a competitive advantage.

5) “The wave of the future is applying information technology to goal-based activities, where the enterprise is more important than the process” pg 15

By applying such information technology system quality: (Measures of the Information Processing System Itself), information quality: (Measures of Information System Output), information use: (Recipient Consumption of the Output of an Information System), user satisfaction: (Recipient Response to the Use of the Output of an Information System), individual impact: (The Effect of an Information System on the Behavior of the Recipient), and organizational impact: (The Effect of Information on Organizational Performance) will be used which in essence will help the organization obtain its goals.

Ch 2 - McNurin & Sprague

1) “Today it is also important to understand the environment in which business operates because the rules of competition have changed and are likely to change even further with full-blown electronic commerce.” Pg 36

Businesses right now, especially major some major companies are reluctant to go into e-commerce. The business section of the New York Times on Sunday Feb 23 reported on this short-siding and stated that while many companies are taking a back-seat to e-commerce – other firms are going with full-fledge systems and advertising campaigns. This scenario shows that some companies understand the environment while others don’t.

2) “Visions are seldom original, Peters notes. A visionary may be the person who focuses attention on an idea at a point in time, but that visionary is likely to have heard it from someone else.” Pg 43

Visions are what drives this industry’s technological advancement. Without it – the rapid pace of technology would not be as strong.

3) “Although it used to be considered strictly a technical issue, implementing an IT architecture has really occurred in tandem with rethinking company operations – how it works, what it does, with whom it works, and so on – because the architecture should support new ways of operating.” Pg 47

Those that go into IT and know it is more technical will benefit. Those that don’t won’t fit in IT correctly into their business model.

4) “Developing a system’s architecture is no longer a technical exercise; it is now a strategic business unit.” Pg 48

Those companies that realize that a system’s architecture is a vital part of the business mix will achieve great success in the future because they will have the tools necessary to prosper.

5) “Yet another trend that has required IS executives to forge partnerships or alliance with other companies is the move to reduce the number of suppliers.” Pg 52

In a flooded market of suppliers, it is becoming easier to go with a company like Lanier where under one roof a firm can get all their product needs as well as the support they desire. However companies such as Lanier charge 8-9% more for each product due to this convenience.

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