The Age of Information – Management information system
Business today has access to more information than ever before. The abundance of newspapers, journals, magazines, and television programs, business and government reports, and seminars has led many commentators to label this the Age of information. Every manager cannot use all available information. The challenge is to collect, store, process, report, and uses the most relevant information to make more effective decisions.
Computers help firms to meet this challenge. They assist managers in converting data unorganized facts, statistics, and predictions concerning people, objects, events, and ideas into useful information. Thus information is data organized to meet certain needs. Every firm is becoming increasingly dependent on computers to transform data into useful information.
Computers and Business:
Computers are valuable asset to and often a necessity for business firms.
Business Applications make by Computer:
Firms use computers to perform a variety of tasks quickly, efficiently, and accurately. The most common business applications of computers are:
- Record Keeping
- Inventory Control
- Order processing
- Electronic Mail
- Relationship Marketing
Management Information System – MIS
MIS need, because of the information explosion, managers making decisions must regularly confront abundance of facts, figures, and determine which information is most useful. A management information system combines computers and regular, organized procedures to provide the information managers use in making decisions.
Management information system is used to data collect, store, and process data, and present information to managers.
The massive amount of information available to organizations – personnel records, information about competitors, sales data, accounting information, customers information, and so on. The first function of an MIS is to determine the information needed to make decisions and to organize it into a database. A database is an integrated collection of data stored in one place for efficient access and information processing.
Store and Process Data:
Data processing is mechanically transferring raw data into some specific form of information. A database must be stored and processed in a form useful to managers. Data are generally stored on hard disks. Once data stored in the MIS, managers can use the data for decision making. Some data can be used in the form in which they are stored.
A database management system (DBMS) is computer software program that helps firms manage their data files. Such programs change information stored in data files, ad new information, and delete information. DBMS software can also be used to sort and merge files, process data, and print reports.
Present Information to Managers:
Processed data must be put in a form useful to managers. Verbal information can be presented in text format in the form of reports, outlines, lists, articles. Numerical information can be presented in table or graph format.
The most commonly used computer graphics are bar charts, pie charts, and graphs.
Decision Support Systems:
A decision support system (DSS) is an interactive information system that enables managers to gain instant access to information in a less structured format than an MIS. DSS software combines corporate information on past performance with what is currently taking place; it allows managers to work with large amounts of data not available otherwise. Through a DSS, managers can obtain information about the firm, competitors, and the business environment.
Executive Information System:
An executive information system (EIS) is a user friendly DSS designed specifically for executives. An EIS is easy to use and requires no knowledge of the computer. Executive information system use big screen, high quality monitors and produce full color displays. An EIS allows top – level managers to ask questions and receive immediate answers in the form of graphs, charts, and reports.
Trends in Computers and MIS:
The amount of information available to managers will continue to increase dramatically in the future. The ever growing volume of information will make computers even more crucial to firms. The business sectors use of computers to process information is expected to grow rapidly. Virtually no business firm, regardless of size, will be able to function efficiently without one.