Business Processes, Information and Decision Making.docx

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Western University
Computer Science
Computer Science 1032A/B
Diane Goldstein

Business Processes, Information and Decision Making Business Processes/Systems  Network of: o Activities o Resources o Facilities o Information  Interacting to achieve a business function  E.g. – inventory management, manufacturing, sales and support Business Process Components  Activities  Resources  Facilities  Information Activities  Transform o Resources and information of one type into another  Follow rules and procedures  Manual and/or automated  E.g. – Payment (activity) transforms QuantityRecieved(information) and ShippingInvoice(information) into PaymentToSupplier(resource) Resources  Items of value  External to organization  E.g.- customers, suppliers, goods Facilities  Structures used within business process  E.g. – inventories, databases, factories, equipment Information  Used by activities  Determines transformation  E.g. – Payment(activity) transforms QuantityRecieved(information) and ShippingInvoice(information) into PaymentToSupplier(resource) Data  Facts or figures o Collected o Recorded o Stored o Processed  Not meaningful on its own Information  Knowledge derived from data  Data presented in meaningful context  Data organized and processed to provide meaning  Data processed by summing, ordering, averaging, grouping, comparing  A difference that makes a difference  Good information: o Accurate o Timely o Relevant – to context and subject o Just sufficient o Worth its cost The Role of information in Business Processes  Business processes generate information: o Bringing together items of data in a context o At a higher level useful for management and strategy decisions  E.g. – payment transforms QuantityRecieved and ShippingInvoice into PaymentToSupplier Information Systems Support for Business Processes  IS used by activities o Several activities may use one system o Activity may have its own system o Activity may use several systems  Relationship of activities to IS determined by System Designers during systems development Information Systems and Decision Making  Data is an important part of any IS  Data is transformed into information  Information o Important starting point for decision making  IS supports decision o Providing the information (the raw material) to make decisions  Decision making o Varied o Complex o Investigate characteristics and dimensions  Dimensions of decision making: o Decision level – operational, managerial, strategic o Decision process – structured, unstructured  Operational decisions  E.g. – how much coffee to purchase?  Which i
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