Conceptual Design for the Management Information System

Topics: Software design, Design, Systems analysis Pages: 19 (4247 words) Published: January 28, 2013
Conceptual System Design 

During the system analysis, the analysis of system data is very important. Analysis of data is made up of more than one level at the beginning (first level) and different ideas are used at each level. At first level, analyst develops a conceptual system design. 

Since the conceptual design sets the direction for the management information system (MIS). It is vital that managers participate seriously and heavily at this stage. Conceptual design is sometimes called feasibility design, gross design or high level design. 

The conceptual design phase takes as input. 
1. A crisp statement of a management information requirement and  2. A set of management objectives for the MIS 

In the conceptual design stage that the alternative overall MIS designs are conceived and the best one is selected by the system analyst in consultation with the top management. The feasibility of meeting the management objectives for the MIS is assessed showing how the system will work at the high level is drawn. Therefore, conceptual design is also known as gross design; high level becomes the basis for the detailed MIS design. 

Hence, conceptual design is a pre-design for the detailed design. In fact, conceptual design is the “centerpiece” of the process. Only after conceptual design is completed, it can be sure that the MIS can successfully be constructed. 

The conceptual design involves the following tasks. 

1. Defining problems in more details. 
2. Refining the management objectives to set system objectives.  3. Establishing system constraints. 
4. Determining information needs and their sources. 
5. Developing alternative designs and selection one from these various designs.  6. Document the conceptual design and preparing the report. 

1. Define the problem- 

There is no doubt that problems exists in any dynamic business. The most important is that what are usually lacking are clear definitions of the problems and the priority system on the basis of problem is the main solution. Therefore, management must take the first step in MIS design by formulating problems to be solved. The problem can be solved by the iterative process. 

The goal for the business leads to the objectives of the general business. From the objectives, plans are derived. Each business objectives and business plans are derived. Each business objectives and business plans are associated with information needs. These Information needs are the problems to be solved by the MIS function. The statements of needs are enough for designing process.  1. Stating the information need. 

2. Asking questions about that need. 
3. Suggesting interpretation of that need. 
4. Detailing the original statement. 
5. Reviewing the more detailed statement of need with management.  These steps are repeated until the information needs and the problem to be solved are really understood. The process of problem refinement flows naturally into the system objectives. 

2. Set System Objectives 

Most of the time it is quite difficult to state objectives for systems that covers all the functional areas.  The manager must define the system objectives in terms of the importance of information demands and not in terms of the satisfaction of demands that are not related to an objective. System analyst tends to stress processing efficiency and staff and functional supervisors commonly believe that their objective is “to complete the required report in time for management use”. This view disregards the real objectives of the system design, management’s effectiveness. 

The value of system lies in the benefits of the users. When we ask for the objectives, a college principal may reply,” provide quality education” and a government bureaucrat may say” provide more jobs for the unemployed”. Despite its difficulty being specific is necessary. System objectives should be expressed in terms of what managers can do after their information requirements have...
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