Information has always been an asset in business. It was not until recently, though, that information became such a tangible resource for commercial purposes. Managing this resource has become just as important as controlling the use and acquisition of other goods or services.
What Are Management Information Systems?
A management information system is essentially a framework, which organizations use to govern their own operations. These systems rely on computers to manage content and access. They help these institutions to perform a variety of internal and external tasks. There are many varieties of such systems but five are among the most commonly used by businesses and other agencies today.
The Most-Helpful Management Information Systems
• Decision Support Systems
Businesses and governments make decisions all day. When this process is not governed carefully, there can be disastrous results. Middle management is typically the level of a business which uses a decision support system to compile information about various phenomena and make informed decisions about them. The three critical components of such a system include a database management system, a model-based management system and a dialog generation system. The latter helps managers who lack familiarity with computers to interact comfortably with their support systems.
• Executive Information Systems
Executives and other leaders in organizations have to oversee departments with which they may not be completely familiar. An executive information system summarizes data from a wide range of departments under their supervision and presents it in intelligible form for these executives. Examples of such distinct departments might include accounting, operations and human resources.
• Transaction Processing Systems
Transactions are obviously one of the most important events in the life of a business. They are the purpose for the existence of most businesses. Therefore, managing the information derived from transactions is also important.
A transaction processing system is primarily meant to handle the information derived from routine transactions that occur in high volumes. For example, a supermarket typically uses such a system to track their own inventories. They also use these systems to develop data about their sales. Any business might use such a system to manage payroll. Banks use them to keep track of deposits.
• Marketing Information Systems
A business cannot run successfully on autopilot. Management information systems not only help them to record present data about sales but also to develop new ideas for making money in the future. Marketing systems in this area help businesses specifically to find, store and analyze data about marketing and distribute it to managers who make the decisions about these matters. The nature of the data found in such a system differs from other data in that it is focused on shaping the future actions of the business. Therefore, it is not as encyclopedic with regard to past transactions, though this information is present in some form.
• School Information Management System
Schools are excellent examples of non-business institutions which need these systems in order to function properly. Their management information systems can cover a wide range of issues. School administrators use them to manage information about student behavior as well as expenses or coordinating lesson plans. These systems can also be used in conjunction with the community to allow parents and others to have access to certain segments of information that pertain to their child.
Management information systems are becoming more and more common as even small organizations rely more heavily on computers. With so many small entities connected to global commerce and other activities on a global scale, it is inevitable that the management of information will become a part of every person’s life.
Author Bio: Joshua Turner is a writer who creates informative articles in relation to business. In this article, he describes management information systems and aims to encourage further study in this field, click here for more information.