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Management Information Systems (MIS), are information systems, typically computer based, that are used within an organization. WordNet described an information system as a system consisting of the network of all communication channels used within an organization. ... components that collect, manipulate, and disseminate data or information... people, communications systems such as telephone lines, and the data itself. The activities involved include inputing data, processing of data into information, storage of data and information, and the production of outputs such as management reports...
Decision Support Systems, Expert systems, and Executive information systems. More

(MIS) A computer system, usually based on a {mainframe} or {minicomputer}, designed to provide management personnel with up-to-date information on an organisation's performance, e.g. inventory and sales. These systems output information in a form that is useable by managers at all levels of the organisation: strategic, tactical, and operational.


The term  system in  MIS  implies  order, arrangement and purpose. The information can be used  for  various  purposes,

-strategic planning
-delivering increased  productivity
-reducing  service cycles
-reducing  product development  cycles
-reducing  marketing life cycles
-increasing  the  understanding  of  customers' needs
-facilitating business and  process re-engineering. More

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What are Management Information Systems?


 

Management Information System
 

 

Management Information Systems


Definition: Management Information Systems (MIS) is the term given to the discipline focused on the integration of computer systems with the aims and objectives on an organisation.

The development and management of information technology tools assists executives and the general workforce in performing any tasks related to the processing of information. MIS and business systems are especially useful in the collation of business data and the production of reports to be used as tools for decision making.

Applications of MIS

With computers being as ubiquitous as they are today, there's hardly any large business that does not rely extensively on their IT systems.

However, there are several specific fields in which MIS has become invaluable.

* Strategy Support

While computers cannot create business strategies by themselves they can assist management in understanding the effects of their strategies, and help enable effective decision-making.

MIS systems can be used to transform data into information useful for decision making. Computers can provide financial statements and performance reports to assist in the planning, monitoring and implementation of strategy.

MIS systems provide a valuable function in that they can collate into coherent reports unmanageable volumes of data that would otherwise be broadly useless to decision makers. By studying these reports decision-makers can identify patterns and trends that would have remained unseen if the raw data were consulted manually.

MIS systems can also use these raw data to run simulations – hypothetical scenarios that answer a range of ‘what if’ questions regarding alterations in strategy. For instance, MIS systems can provide predictions about the effect on sales that an alteration in price would have on a product. These Decision Support Systems (DSS) enable more informed decision making within an enterprise than would be possible without MIS systems.

* Data Processing

MISNot only do MIS systems allow for the collation of vast amounts of business data, but they also provide a valuable time saving benefit to the workforce. Where in the past business information had to be manually processed for filing and analysis it can now be entered quickly and easily onto a computer by a data processor, allowing for faster decision making and quicker reflexes for the enterprise as a whole.

Management by Objectives

While MIS systems are extremely useful in generating statistical reports and data analysis they can also be of use as a Management by Objectives (MBO) tool.

MBO is a management process by which managers and subordinates agree upon a series of objectives for the subordinate to attempt to achieve within a set time frame. Objectives are set using the SMART ratio: that is, objectives should be Specific, Measurable, Agreed, Realistic and Time-Specific.

The aim of these objectives is to provide a set of key performance indicators by which an enterprise can judge the performance of an employee or project. The success of any MBO objective depends upon the continuous tracking of progress.

In tracking this performance it can be extremely useful to make use of an MIS system. Since all SMART objectives are by definition measurable they can be tracked through the generation of management reports to be analysed by decision-makers.

Benefits of MIS

The field of MIS can deliver a great many benefits to enterprises in every industry. Expert organisations such as the Institute of MIS along with peer reviewed journals such as MIS Quarterly continue to find and report new ways to use MIS to achieve business objectives.

Core Competencies

Every market leading enterprise will have at least one core competency – that is, a function they perform better than their competition. By building an exceptional management information system into the enterprise it is possible to push out ahead of the competition. MIS systems provide the tools necessary to gain a better understanding of the market as well as a better understanding of the enterprise itself.

Enhance Supply Chain Management

Improved reporting of business processes leads inevitably to a more streamlined production process. With better information on the production process comes the ability to improve the management of the supply chain, including everything from the sourcing of materials to the manufacturing and distribution of the finished product.

Quick Reflexes

As a corollary to improved supply chain management comes an improved ability to react to changes in the market. Better MIS systems enable an enterprise to react more quickly to their environment, enabling them to push out ahead of the competition and produce a better service and a larger piece of the pie.

Further information about MIS can be found at the Bentley College Journal of MIS and the US Treasury’s MIS handbook, and an example of an organisational MIS division can be found at the Department of Social Services for the state of Connecticut.