The role of Management Information Systems is described and analyzed in light of its capability for decision-making. This process and its impact on top level management in a business organization are explained with an emphasis on automated decision making. Limitations and challenges of MIS are discussed and a set of six recommendations proposed for increasing the effectiveness of MIS in the decision-making process. Management information systems are comprised of computing and communications hardware, operating system software, applications software to support business functions, and specialized staff to analyze and design systems that help to achieve business goals and objectives. Essaysdoctor.com provides unmatched assistance with custom paper writing. Management Information Systems support a broad array of business operations and enable interaction with an organization's suppliers, customers and service providers. The selection and deployment of computer systems and communications hardware are driven by the size of an organization, the computing and communications needs of the business sector in which an organization competes and the geographical dispersion of operations. The capacity of computer systems ranges from powerful mainframe systems that support enterprise needs, servers that provide specialized functionality, and desktop units that enable individual employees to access the computing and communications resources of their organization. Each hardware component is controlled and managed by its own specialized operating system software. Computer systems are comprised of several components including central processors, memory, storage and a communications interface. The central processor is a chip designed to execute commands from the operating system software and applications programs.
The memory of the computer provides capacity for the central processor to perform the functions which the operating system and applications software provide computer users. Disk storage provides the capacity to store applications programs, databases, text files, and graphic files used in the programs or that are created by users in the performance of their job duties. The communications interface is the device (an interface card for a small computer and a communications processor for a large system) that enables the computer to interact with other computers on a network or across the Internet. Through the implementation of vendor produced applications software or the deployment of in-house developed customized applications software, management information systems can support a broad array of business operations. Vendor-produced applications software such as Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software can support large enterprise-wide operational needs. In contrast, vendor produced applications software like Microsoft Office is designed to support the needs of individual users at their workstation. Other applications software packages such as supply chain management systems enable computer users to communicate and conduct business with suppliers and customers. Custom built software is often created to perform functions that vendor produced software cannot adequately support. In addition to hardware and software components, specialized IT staff is needed to select, implement, manage, and maintain all of the elements of management information systems. The type of IT staff and the number of IT staff required to assure management information systems adequately support business operations varies by the size and type of organization.