Introduction to Business Computing Notes

Topics: Management, Decision theory, Database management system Pages: 39 (8190 words) Published: August 20, 2013
Introduction – Information Technology

Information Technology (IT) – mixture of computing and communications that characteristics our current technological environment.

Business Organisations
Systems and Systems Thinking
A system is a collection of interrelated components that function together to achieve some predefined purposes or objectives. A typical system usually had nine characteristics, as follows: 1. Component – A part of a system commonly referred to as a subsystem

2. Interrelated components - The dependency of one subsystem on one or more subsystems

3. Boundary – The line that marks the inside and outside of a system and that sets apart the system from its environment

4. Environment – everything external to the system that interacts with the system

5. Interfaces – Point of contact where a system meets its environment or where subsystems meet each other

6. Input – Whatever a system takes from its environment to fulfil its purpose

7. Output – Whatever a system returns to its environment in order to fulfil its purpose

8. Constraint – A limit or condition within which a system can accomplish its objectives

9. Stakeholders – Person(s) or organisation(s) that have a direct interest in the system

Two types of systems, open systems and closed systems are usually present in the real-world settings, depending on the relationship of the system with its environment. * Open System – Interact freely with its environment, taking in input and returning output * Closed System – Don’t interact with its environment Adopting systems thinking is of great importance in the effective management of an organisation and problem-solving. This approach usually involves identifying something as a system and subsequently recognizing the characteristics and relationships of various components of the system.

Systems Classifications
Systems can be categorised into four basic classifications:
* Engineered/Design Technical System – A man-made system that is physically implemented * Natural System – Occurs naturally in the world
* Human Activity System – Systems where people come together for some purpose * Design Abstract System – Constructed by humans but not physically implemented i.e. math, language

Businesses as Open Systems
Organisations are open systems composed of interrelated subsystems with specifics organisational missions and objectives. These subsystems are dependent on each other. * Organisational mission – A statement that makes it clear what the business the organisation is.

Modern organisations are composed of smaller, interrelated subsystems servicing specialized business functions. Typically, these business functions include: * Research & Development
* Inventory control
* Data processing
* HR
* Production
* Accounting
* Marketing

Business Organisational Structure
Business organisational structure refers to organisational components (subsystems) identified and the way these components are related to each other in the organisation. Depending on the goals of the organisation and its approach to management, a number of organisational structures can be used. This structure directly affects the flow of data and information within an organisation and determines how the business information systems are viewed and what kind of business information systems are to be used. Business organisational structure typically falls into one of the following categories:

1. Traditional (Hierarchical) Structure
* Higher levels have more power than lower levels
* Instructions (top down)
* Information (bottom up)

2. Project Organisational Structure
* Centered on major products or services
* Specific time frame
* Project team with specific goals
* Source and group people with relevant knowledge and experience to complete a project

3. Team Organisational...
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