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Information Systems Characteristics


Many companies use information systems to have successful operations, assemble data, and achieve goals and objectives. Information systems comprise of data; individuals and devices that assemble, manage, produce, and keep information; the grid that carries and collects information; and the techniques that control the management of information (Stair & Reynolds, 2010).

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Presently, several information systems use computers and communication systems to keep, handle, and carry data successfully than other manual systems. In this paper, we see the functions of information systems, their main users, information produced, their inventors, as well as their advantages and disadvantages.

Users of information systems

The Users of information systems range from employees in the company to the clients that the company serves. People in the organization may have different needs compared to others; therefore, an information system should be able to serve the different wants of all those who use it (Parsons & Oja, 2010). Many companies use the hierarchical structure to classify all partakers in the company and to ensure that information systems function effectively.

There are two classifications of people working in organizations, workers, and managers. Workers are individuals who perform all the objectives of the company. For instance, sell products and receive calls. In general, they gather data for information systems. Managers form the objectives of a company and strategies for attaining those objectives. For example, they approve new merchandise and approve new projects (Prakken, 2000).

Executive managers perform strategic planning that involves setting up long-term objectives, mid-level managers do tactical planning that involves finding methods of achieving objectives, and low-level managers do operational planning that deals with handling daily operations. Information systems give all the statistics used in strategic, tactical, and operational planning.

Designers of information systems

The composition of designers who invent information systems depends on the magnitude of the project. Big and sophisticated projects have a big percentage of computer experts. For smaller projects, a big number of participants are users instead of computer experts.

Apart from the members in the project, other people participate in designing an information system at different stages of the project (Prakken, 2000). A well-known method called joint application design (JAD) holds on the notion that effective information systems form when end-users and computer professionals work as a team in doing the project. JAD gives strategies for scheduling and organizing several meetings, in which users and experts together recognize setbacks and seek answers.

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Functions of information systems

An information system holds a significant role in organizational processes. Companies use them to control and supervise procedures and guarantee success and competence. An information system can modify data from the subsystems into more profound data for workers. This data analyzes the operation of subsystems and is useful in modifying subsystems to function more effectively. Such modifications include trying alternative inputs and creating new outputs. In this context, information systems are external to procedures and function to supervise and manage these procedures (Stair & Reynolds, 2010).

However, from a modern perspective, information systems are part of the procedure itself. In this view, information systems contribute significantly to organizational procedures. It does not only supervise procedures externally but also function as a part of the procedure to transform input data into products.

Advantages of information systems

Information systems help in dealing with complexity. When using software systems, it is not necessary to understand difficult issues such as programming rather how to use the software properly (Prakken, 2000).

Information systems make procedures more successful. Information technology helps in reducing unproductive and monotonous processes such as word processing. However, in some cases, it is hard to know the success rate as people will use information systems only when they are ready. The best approach to present information systems is not to copy existing systems but to learn from the past and invent better systems (Parsons & Oja, 2010).

For companies to maintain their businesses they must be fast to plan and create new products. Information systems are helping organizations to perform their operations fast and thus satisfy the needs of customers. For example, electronic assembly methods help producers to design vehicles for quicker manufacturing (Stair & Reynolds, 2010).

Challenges of information systems

Society has gone through changes because of globalization. This has a considerable effect on companies and their information systems. Internet systems can link people and companies across the globe and create great investment opportunities. However, these opportunities present many restrictions involving distance and time, language, and trade.

Time and distance challenges are a problem for people involved with international business especially in remote areas. Differences in time for different countries across the world make communication difficult for people. In addition, long distances cause delays in delivering merchandise from one country to the other (Parsons & Oja, 2010).

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An information system enhances the operations of a company in many ways. Managers can determine the operations of the company through information systems. Computer experts help in designing information systems however, end users can contribute to building a more effective system (Stair & Reynolds, 2010). Information systems contribute significantly to globalization; however, many challenges include cultural differences, time, and distance. These challenges cause delays in delivering products to clients.


Parsons, J., & Oja, D. (2010). New Perspectives on Computer Concepts 2011. USA: Cengage Learning.

Prakken, B. (2000). Information, organization, and information systems design: an integrated approach to information problems. Boston: Kluwer Academic Publishers.

Stair, R., Reynolds, G. (2010). Principles of Information Systems. USA: Cengage Learning.

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