The Role of the Operating Manager in Information Systems
May 11, 2014
Professor Gary Giomi, John Tang
In the case of Midsouth Chamber of Commerce (MSCC), there is a question of the extent of responsibility and participation the Vice President of Marketing and Membership, Leon Lassiter, should have in the conversion from the companies old accounting system to the new one. This responsibility had been appointed to the Vice President of Public Finance, Jeff Hedges, and the Systems Analyst, Simon Kovecki. Background
With the growth of MSCC, new technology was needed to keep up with information demand. Staff was limited to accessing resources from certain workstations, and the turnaround for updated customer information needed to be vastly improved. A full-time systems analyst was needed to make recommendations for new hardware and software and develop the software for each department (Brown, p. 12). In the past, a consultant, Nolan Vassici, was used to make these recommendations.
Simon Kovecki was hired to be the Systems Analyst having no prior knowledge of the type of organization MSCC was, or with accounting software. Kovecki then spent his first three months on the job learning the ins and outs of the organization and the systems. It was after concerns from Kovecki to Lassiter about Hedge's ability to properly manage the information systems area that Lassiter took it upon himself to source the new software MSCC would need to update their computer systems.
Poor management of duties lead to significant delays in implementation of the new system. Aspects of the project fell to the wayside while other projects took priority. Due to frustration and not possessing the knowledge to answer staff's questions, communication between the project managers and the staff broke down. Poor planning made migration of data from the old system to the new system difficult. Discussion
There are many aspects to the problem of the amount of involvement Lassiter should have in the computer system conversion. One of the issues seems to be that the staff tasked with managing the project were not capable or knowledgeable enough to take on such a project. Their laissez-faire attitude toward performing the appointed managerial duties put the project behind schedule and alienated the rest of the staff. This may have been prompted through Lassiter's admission that he had failed to appoint responsibilities to the managers.
Another point of contention is with the documentation process of the previous computer system. Since the information system management was previously contracted out to Vassici on a need-only basis, Vassici was the only person with knowledge of how to troubleshoot the old software. After the closing of Vassici's business, the lack of documentation and preparation before the implementation of the new system falls on Lassiter.
In conclusion, the extent of responsibility and participation the Vice President of Marketing and Membership, Leon Lassiter, in the conversion of the companies software conversion project should have been much higher than it was. The reasoning behind this is that it was Lassiter's idea to perform the conversion in the first place. Lassiter was the one who sourced the software from UNITRAK, and put in too much time to just hand the project off. As soon as he received the go ahead from the Board of Directors to purchase the new software, it became his responsibility to make sure the project was performed in a timely manner, and that any and all questions and concerns from the staff were addressed. References
Brown, C. V., DeHayes, D. W., Hoffer, J. A., Martin, W. E., Perkins, a. C. Managing
Information Technology for DeVry University, 7th Edition [VitalSource
Bookshelf version]. Retrieved May 11, 2014, from
References: Brown, C. V., DeHayes, D. W., Hoffer, J. A., Martin, W. E., Perkins, a. C. Managing Information Technology for DeVry University, 7th Edition [VitalSource Bookshelf version]. Retrieved May 11, 2014, from http://online.vitalsource.com/books/9781256431688
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