Organizations have long recognized the importance of managing key resources such as people and raw materials. Information has now moved to its rightful place as a key resource. Decision makers now understand that information is not just a by-product of conducting business; rather, it fuels business and can be the critical factor in determining the success or failure of a business.
To maximize the usefulness of information, a business must manage it correctly, just as it manages other resources. Managers need to understand that costs are associated with the production, distribution, security, storage, and retrieval of all information. Although information is all around us, it is not free, and its strategic use for positioning a business competitively should not be taken for granted.
The ready availability of networked computers, along with access to the Internet and the Web, has created an information explosion throughout society in general and business in particular. Managing computer-generated information differs in significant ways from handling manually produced data. Usually there is a greater quantity of computer information to administer. Costs of organizing and maintaining it can increase at alarming rates, and users often treat it less skeptically than information obtained in different ways. This chapter examines the fundamentals of different kinds of information systems, the varied roles of systems analysts, and the phases in the systems development life cycle (SDLC) as they relate to Human–Computer Interaction (HCI) factors; it also introduces Computer-Aided Software Engineering (CASE) tools.
Once you have mastered the material in this chapter you will be able to:
- Recall the basic types of computer-based systems that a systems analyst needs to address.
- Understand how users working in context with new technologies change the dynamics of a system.
- Realize what the many roles of a systems analyst are.
- Comprehend the fundamentals of three development methodologies: SDLC, the agile approach, and object-oriented systems analysis and design.
- Understand what CASE tools are and how they help a systems analyst.
- Types of Systems
Transaction Processing Systems / Office Automation Systems and Knowledge Work Systems / Management Information Systems / Decision Support Systems / Artificial Intelligence and Expert Systems / Group Decision Support Systems and Computer-Supported Collaborative Work Systems / Executive Support Systems
- Integrating Technologies for Systems
Ecommerce Applications and Web Systems / Enterprise Systems / Systems for Wireless and Mobile Devices / Open Source Software
- Need for Systems Analysis and Design
- Roles of the Systems Analyst
Systems Analyst as Consultant / Systems Analyst as Supporting Expert / Systems Analyst as Agent of Change / Qualities of the Systems Analyst
- The Systems Development Life Cycle
Incorporating Human-Computer Interaction Considerations / Identifying Problems, Opportunities, and Objectives / Determining Human Information Requirements / Analyzing System Needs / Designing the Recommended System / Developing and Documenting Software / Testing and Maintaining the System / Implementing and Evaluating the System / The Impact of Maintenance
- Using Computer-Aided Software Engineering (CASE) Tools
- The Agile Approach
Developmental Process for an Agile Project
- Object-Oriented Systems Analysis and Design & Choosing Which Systems Development Method to Use