12-3 Use the systems development process outlined in this chapter and the model of IS components from Chapter 1 as problem-solving frameworks to help you propose information systems solutions to simple business problems Describe and give examples to illustrate how you might use each of the steps of the information systems development cycle to develop and implement a business information system Learning Objectives
12-4 Learning Objectives Explain how prototyping can be used as an effective technique to improve the process of systems development for end users and IS specialists Understand the basics of project management and their importance to a successful system development effort Identify the activities involved in the implementation of new information systems
12-5 Learning Objectives Compare and contrast the four basic system conversation strategies Describe several evaluation factors that should be considered in evaluating the acquisition of hardware, software, and IS services
12-6 IS Development When the systems approach is applied to the development of an information systems solution to business problems, it is called information systems development or application development
12-7 Case 1: Customer-Driven Development At Intuit, development of new product ideas are driven by a psychologist Playing nice Free-association sessions Focus is always on the customer Making “pain points” less painful Capturing pencil-and-paper users Follow-me-homes Simplifying language
12-8 Case Study Questions Should Intuit’s “far-out thinking” and acceptance of failure as part of the application software development process be duplicated at large software development companies like Microsoft? Should it be duplicated at the thousands of small independent software companies that exist?
12-9 Case Study Questions Which do you prefer? Intuit’s customer-driven development process where hundreds of employees and managers are sent to consult with customer in their homes or places of business, or Microsoft’s process of using professional anthropologists to do such research
12-10 Case Study Questions Intuit developed the wildly successful QuickBooks: Simple Start Edition, which eliminated all accounting jargon Could this idea be the foundation of a new version of Intuit’s top-selling TurboTax software, which removed all tax accounting jargon from that product to reach the 20 million Americans who do not use tax preparation software or a professional tax preparer? Would such a product be possible or successful?
12-11 The Systems Approach A problem solving technique that uses a systems orientation to define problems and opportunities and develop appropriate and feasible solutions Analyzing a problem and formulating a solution involves these interrelated activities: Recognize and define a problem or opportunity using systems thinking Develop and evaluate alternative system solutions Select the solution that best meets your requirements Design the selected system solution Implement and evaluate the success of the system
12-12 What is Systems Thinking? Seeing the forest and the trees in any situation Seeing interrelationships among systems rather than linear cause-and-effect chains Seeing processes of change among systems rather than discrete snapshots of change See the system in any situation Find the input, processing, output, feedback and control components
12-14 Systems Analysis and Design SA&D is the overall process by which information systems are designed and implemented Includes identification of business problems Two most common approaches Object-oriented analysis and design Life cycle
12-16 Systems Development Process Systems Investigation The first step in the systems development process May involve consideration of proposals generated by a business/IT planning process Also includes the preliminary feasibility study of proposed information system solutions
12-17 Systems Development Process Feasibility Studies: a preliminary study to determine the Information needs of prospective users Resource requirements Costs Benefits Feasibility In some cases, a feasibility study is unnecessary
12-18 Operational Feasibility How well the proposed system will Support the business priorities of the organization Solve the identified problem Fit with the existing organizational structure
12-19 Economic Feasibility An assessment of Cost savings Increased revenue Decreased investment requirements Increased profits Cost/benefit analysis
12-20 Technical Feasibility Determine the following can meet the needs of a proposed system and can be acquired or developed in the required time Hardware Software Network
12-21 Human Factors Feasibility Assess the acceptance level of Employees Customers Suppliers Management support Determine the right people for the various new or revised roles
12-22 Legal/Political Feasibility Assess Possible patent or copyright violations Software licensing for developer side only Governmental restrictions Changes to existing reporting structure
12-23 Systems Analysis An in-depth study of end user information needs It produces the functional requirements used as the basis for the design of an information system It typically involves a detailed study of the Information needs of a company and end users Activities, resources, and products of one or more of the information systems currently being used Information system capabilities required to meet the information needs of business stakeholders
12-24 Organizational Analysis Study of the organization, including… Management structure People Business activities Environmental systems Current information systems Input, processing, output, storage, and control
12-25 Analysis of the Present System Before designing a new system, it is important to study the system to be improved or replaced Hardware and software Network People resources used to convert data resources into information products System activities of input, processing, output, storage, and control
12-26 Logical Analysis A logical model is a blueprint of the current system It displays what the current system does, without regard to how it does it It allows an analyst to understand the processes, functions, and data associated with a system without getting bogged down with hardware and software
12-27 Functional Requirements This step of systems analysis is one of the most difficult Determine what type of information each business activity requires Try to determine the information processing capabilities required for each system activity The goal is to identify what should be done, not how to do it
12-28 Examples of Functional Requirements User Interface: automatic entry of product data and easy-to-use data entry screens for Web customers Processing: fast, automatic calculation of sales totals and shipping costs Storage: fast retrieval and update of data from product, pricing, and customer databases Control: signals for data entry errors and quick e-mail confirmation for customers
12-29 Systems Design Systems design focuses on three areas
12-30 Prototyping Prototyping is the rapid development and testing of working models An interactive, iterative process used during the design phase Makes development faster and easier, especially when end user requirements are hard to define Has enlarged the role of business stakeholders
12-32 User Interface Design Focuses on supporting the interactions between end users and their computer-based applications Designers concentrate on the design of attractive and efficient forms of user input and output Frequently a prototyping process Produces detailed design specifications for information products, such as display screens
12-33 Checklist for Corporate Websites Remember the customer Aesthetics Broadband content Easy to navigate Searchability Incompatibilities Registration forms Dead links
12-34 System Specifications Formalizing the design of User interface methods and products Database structures Processing procedures Control procedures
12-35 Examples of System Specifications User interface specifications Use personalized screens that welcome repeat Web customers and that make product recommendations Database specifications Develop databases that use object/relational database management software to organize access to all customer and inventory data and to multimedia product information Software specifications Acquire an e-commerce software engine to process all e-commerce transactions with fast responses, i.e., retrieve necessary product data and compute all sales amounts in less than one second Hardware and network specifications Install redundant networked Web servers and sufficient high-bandwidth telecommunications lines to host the company e-commerce website Personnel specifications Hire an e-commerce manager and specialists and a webmaster and Web designer to plan, develop, and manage e-commerce operations
12-36 End User Development IS professionals play a consulting role, while uses do their own application development A staff of user consultants may be available to help with analysis, design, and installation Other support Application package training Hardware and software advice Help gaining access to organization databases
12-37 Focus on IS Activities End user development should focus on the fundamental activities of an information system Input Processing Output Storage Control
12-39 Doing End User Development Application development capabilities built into software packages make it easier for end users to develop their own solutions
12-40 Encouraging End User Web Development Look for tools that make sense Some are more powerful or costly than needed Spur creativity Consider a competition among departments Set some limits Limit what parts of a web page or site can be changed and who can do it Give managers responsibility Make them personally responsible for content
12-41 Encouraging End User Web Development Make users comfortable Training will make users more confident It can save the IT department the trouble of fixing problems later on It can limit the need for continuous support
12-42 Implementing New Systems The systems implementation stage involves Hardware and software acquisition Software development Testing of programs and procedures Conversion of data resources Conversion alternatives Education/training of end users and specialists who will operate the new system
12-44 Case 2: Managing Radical Change HP is embarking on a makeover of its internal tech systems Replacing 85 loosely connected data centers around the world with 6 cutting-edge facilities Cutting thousands of smaller projects to focus on a few corporate-wide initiatives Scrapping 784 databases for one data warehouse Laying off thousands of IT workers Building its own fiber-optic network to connect the six data centers
12-45 Case Study Questions Will the initiatives being undertaken by CIO Randy Mott to implement major changes to the IT function at HP make IT a more efficient and vital contributor to HP’s business success? Defend your position on each of the major initiatives he is implementing Do you approve of the change management job Mott is doing, including his meetings with HP employees throughout the world, and having “coffee talks” with them?
12-46 Case Study Questions Assume you have been hired as a management consultant or coach to CIO Mott What are several suggestions you might give him to help him successfully implement his ambitious plans for IT changes at HP?
12-47 Project Management The skills and knowledge necessary to be a good project manager will translate into virtually any project environment The people who have acquired them are sought after by most organizations
12-48 What is a Project? Every project has A set of activities with a clear beginning and end Goals Objectives Tasks Limitations or constraints A series of steps or phases Managing a project effectively requires Process Tools Techniques
12-50 Phases of Project Management There are five phases in most projects Initiating/Defining Planning Executing Controlling Closing
12-51 Initiating/Defining Phase Example activities State the problem(s) and/or goal(s) Identify the objectives Secure resources Explore the costs/benefits in the feasibility study
12-52 Planning Phase Example activities Identify and sequence activities Identify the “critical path” Estimate the time and resources needed for project completion Write a detailed project plan
12-53 Execution Phase Example activities Commit resources to specific tasks Add additional resources and/or personnel if necessary Initiate work on the project
12-54 Controlling Phase Example activities Establish reporting obligations Create reporting tools Compare actual progress with baseline Initiate control interventions, if necessary
12-55 Closing Phase Example activities Install all deliverables Finalize all obligations and commitments Meet with stakeholders Release project resources Document the project Issue a final report
12-56 Evaluating Hardware, Software, Services Establish minimum physical and performance characteristics for all hardware and software Formalize these requirements in an RFP/RFP Send RFQ to appropriate vendors Evaluate bids when received All claims must be demonstrated Obtain recommendations from other users Search independent sources for evaluations Benchmark test programs and test data
12-57 Hardware Evaluation Factors Major evaluation factors Performance Cost Reliability Compatibility Technology Ergonomics Connectivity Scalability Software Support
12-58 Software Evaluation Factors Hardware evaluation factors apply to software, as do these Quality Efficiency Flexibility Security Connectivity Maintenance Documentation Hardware Software that is slow, hard to use, bug-filled, or poorly documented is not a good choice at any price
12-59 Evaluating IS Services Examples of IS services Developing a company website Installation or conversion of hardware/software Employee training Hardware maintenance System design and/or integration Contract programming Consulting services
12-60 IS Service Evaluation Factors IS evaluation factors include Performance Systems development Maintenance Conversion Training Backup facilities and services Accessibility to sales and support Business position and financial strength Hardware selection and compatibility Software packages offered
12-61 Other Implementation Activities The keys to successful implementation of a new business system Testing Data conversion Documentation Training
12-62 System Testing System testing may involve Testing and debugging software Testing website performance Testing new hardware Review of prototypes
12-63 Data Conversion Data conversion includes Converting data elements from the old database to the new database Correcting data errors Filtering out unwanted data Consolidating data from several databases Organizing data into new data subsets Improperly organized and formatted data is a major cause of implementation failures
12-64 Documentation User Documentation Sample data entry screens, forms, reports System operating instructions Systems Documentation Method of communication among those developing, implementing, and maintaining a computer-based system Detailed record of the system design Extremely important when diagnosing problems and making system changes
12-65 Training End users must be trained to operate a new business system or its implementation will fail May involve only activities, such as data entry, or all aspects of system use Managers and end users must understand how the new technology impacts business operations System training should be supplemented with training related to Hardware devices Software packages
12-67 Direct Conversion Direct conversion The simplest conversion strategy The most disruptive to the organization Sometimes referred to as the slam dunk or cold-turkey strategy May be the only viable solution in cases of emergency implementation or if the old and new system cannot coexist Has the highest risk of failure Involves turning off the old system and turning on the new one
12-68 Parallel Conversion Old and new systems are run simultaneously until everyone is satisfied that The new system functions correctly The old system is no longer needed Conversion to new system can be single cutover or phased cutover Has the lowest risk, but the highest cost Can cost 4 times more than using the old system Best choice where an automated system is replacing a manual one
12-69 Pilot Conversion Scenarios best suited to a pilot conversion Multiple business locations Geographically diverse locations Advantages of single location conversion Can select a location that best represents the conditions across the organization Less risky in terms of loss of time or delays in processing Can be evaluated and changed before further installations
12-70 Phased Conversion A phased or gradual conversion Takes advantage of both the direct and parallel approaches Minimizes the risks involved Allows the new system to be brought online as logically ordered functional components Disadvantages Takes the most time Created the most disruption to the organization over time
12-71 Post-Implementation Activities The single most costly activity Correcting errors or faults in the system Improving system performance Adapting the system to changes in the operating or business environment Requires more programmers than does application development May exist for years
12-72 Systems Maintenance There are four basic categories of system maintenance Corrective: fix bugs and logical errors Adaptive: add new functionality Perfective: improve performance Preventive: reduce chances of failure
12-73 Post-Implementation Review Ensures that the newly implemented system meets the established business objectives Errors must be corrected by the maintenance process Includes a periodic review/audit of the system as well as continuous monitoring
12-74 Case 3: Indiana University Financial Aid Success or failure is in the eye of the beholder A PeopleSoft implementation at Indiana University resulted in denials of financial aid Contributors to the problem Software did not align with business processes Limited time for testing and training Interface issues between the loan systems at lending institutions and the university Transactions blocked for minor exceptions Poor project management and tracking
12-75 Case 3: Indiana University Financial Aid Project management violations Poor or no due diligence No user training Absence of system alerts System interface problems were ignored The complex project wasn’t broken down into smaller, progressively delivered chunks
12-76 Case Study Questions As with any story, there are always two sides. Indiana University sees the problem as a surprise; outside observers see the problem as predictable and preventable What do you think? Is it possible that some implementation problems cannot be easily foreseen or prevented?
12-77 Case Study Questions What could Indiana University have done differently to prevent this unfortunate even from occurring? Is there evidence to suggest that it learned from this experience?
12-78 Case 4: In-House Development Custom code continues to be the secret sauce that gives many businesses an edge Making business processes faster and more efficient Delivering new services Improving customer support Innovation in other ways, usually something unique
12-79 Case 4: In-House Development The do-it-yourself approach isn’t cheap High salaries for developers and IT managers Dozens or hundreds of personnel needed Before, computer hardware dictated the choice of operating systems and development software Developing in C++ costs half as much as developing in Cobol Newer packages unhitch programmers from mainframes and proprietary platforms
12-80 Case Study Questions Jeff Brandmaier, senior VP and CIO at H&R Block Inc., describes in-house developed applications as “the stuff that gives you competitive advantage.” Why do you think he feels this way? Can a modern organization be competitive without developing any applications in-house?
12-81 Case Study Questions The case points out that despite the use of vendor applications, there is “still a lot of manually intensive work that goes on in the development process.” Why do you think vendor applications still require in-house developers?
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