SAD-Considerations For Candidate System

In today’s business there is more demand for computer services than there are resources available to meet the demand. The demand is made up of the following.

1.Operations of existing system.
2.Maintenance that focuses on “patching “ programs
3.Enhancements that involve major modifications in program structure or equipment.
4.Requests for candidate system

All these demands require resources-human, financial, and technological. On the human side the computer department has to provide the following.

1. Computer operators to run equipment.
2. Data entry personnel.
3. System Analyst to define and design specifications.
4. Application programmers to convert System specifications to Computer programs.
5. Maintenance Programmers to debug errors.
6. Supervisors, project leaders and Managers to Co-ordinate the jobs with the users.

Thus, the basic problem is to match the demands for services with the available resources. How much one project is favored over another depends on technical, behavioral and Economic Factors.

The technical factor involves the system departments ability to handle a project. It mostly depends on the availability of the qualified analyst, designers and software specialist to do the work.

The behavioral factors involves the users past experience with the existing system, the success record of the analyst and the influence the user can exert on upper management to finance a candidate system.

The most important criteria in selecting a project is the economic factor. It focuses on the systems potential return on investment.

Political considerations

In conjunction with the preceding considerations is the political factor, which is partly behavioral. For eg-managers in a production firm are considering two office automation proposals: proposal A-a teleconferencing system designed to reduce travel cost, and proposal B- a sales support system. Proposal –A is justified by hard figures, but it was turned down. Instead proposal-B was sponsored by an influential executive and had the support of the committee. It passed because the right people were convinced it should.

Planning and control for system success

For the success of a system the analyst role is very important. First, a plan must be devised, detailing the procedure, some methodology,activities,resources,costs and timetable for completing the system.

Second, in larger projects, a project team must be formed of analysts,programmers,a system consultant and user representatives. Shared knowledge, interaction and the coordination realized through team effort can be extremely effective in contrast with individual analysts doing the same work.

Finally the project should be divided into manageable modules to reflect the phases of system development-analysis, design and implementation

Prototyping

The two major problems with building information systems. 
1) the system development life cycle is too long and
2) the right system rarely development first time.

Lengthy development frustrates the user. Analysts seem to get bogged down with tedious methodologies for developing systems. An alternative to this “paralysis by analysis” is an advanced technique called prototyping. The basic steps are:

1.Identify user information and operating requirements.
2.Develop a working prototype that focuses on only the most important function, using a basic database.
3.Allow the user to use the prototype, discuss requested changes and implement the most important changes. 4.Repeat the next version of prototype with further changes incorporated until the system fully meets user requirements.
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