The Feasibility Study
The Feasibility study is an analysis of possible alternative solutions to a problem and a recommendation on the best alternative. It can decide whether a process be carried out by a new system more efficiently than the existing one.
The feasibility study should examine three main areas; - market issues, - technical and organizational requirements, - financial overview. The results of this study are used to make a decision whether to proceed with the project, or table it. If it indeed leads to a project being approved, it will - before the real work of the proposed project starts - be used to ascertain the likelihood of the project's success.
A feasibility study should provide management with enough information to decide: 1.
Whether the project can be done;
Whether the final product will benefit its intended users; 3.
What are the alternatives among which a solution will be chosen (during subsequent phases)? 4.
Is there a preferred alternative?
Content of a feasibility study
Things to be studied in the feasibility study:
The present organizational system
Stakeholders, users, policies, functions, objectives...
Problems with the present system
Inconsistencies, inadequacies in functionality, performance
Possible solution alternatives
● Sticking with the current system" is always an alternative
Different business processes for solving the problems
Different levels/types of computerization for the solutions
Advantages and disadvantages of the alternatives
A needs analysis should be the first undertaking of a feasibility study as it clearly defines the project outline and the clients' requirements. Once these questions have been answered the person/s undertaking the feasibility study will have outlined the project needs definition. The following questions need to be asked to define the project needs definition: What is the end deliverable? What purpose will it serve? What are the environmental effects? What are the rules and regulations? What standards will we be measured against? What are the quality requirements? What is the minimal quality requirements allowed? What sustainability can we expect? What carry over work can we expect? What are the penalty clauses? How much do we need to outsource? How much do we need to insource?
Types of Feasibility
The feasibility study includes complete initial analysis of all related system. Therefore the study must be conducted in a manner that will reflect the operational, economic as well as technical and scheduling feasibility of the system proposal. These are the four main types of feasibility study.
This aspect defines the urgency of the problem and the acceptability of any solution. It shows if the system is developed, will it be used. The operational study includes people-oriented and social issues: internal issues, such as manpower problems, labor objections, manager resistance, organizational conflicts and policies; also external issues, including social acceptability, legal aspects and government regulations. It takes in consideration whether the current work practices and procedures support a new system and social factors of how the organizational changes will affect the working lives of those affected by the system.
Operational -The PIECES Framework
The PIECES framework can help in identifying operational problems to be solved, and their urgency:
Performance -- Does current mode of operation provide adequate throughput and response time? Information --
Does current mode provide end users and managers with timely, pertinent, accurate and usefully formatted information? Economy --
Does current mode of operation provide cost-effective information services to the business? Could there be a reduction in costs and/or an increase in benefits? Control --
Does current mode of operation offer effective controls to protect against fraud and to guarantee accuracy and...
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