Free Essay

Identifying Methodologies, Techniques, and System Requirements

In: Computers and Technology

Submitted By oliviasdad123
Words 1440
Pages 6
Introduction

There are many ways a systems analyst can go about getting information needed to prepare for a project. Information gathering plays a big part in knowing your customer, their existing system, and what they are looking to accomplish. In the first portion of this assignment, we’ll make some decisions as to how to approach a client, picking an interview structure, and selecting questions for an interview. The second portion of this assignment will cover explaining to a customer why the information gathering technique known as Prototyping is a viable option, and how it can actually aid in users understanding and expressing their own needs.
Part 1 – Interviewing the Chief Accountant

The first step to approaching an interview is undoubtedly preparation. I would read as much information about the background of the company as I could from any number of sources. Some good suggestions on where I can find some of this information are places such as an annual report, a corporate newsletter, press releases, or even the internet (Kendall and Kendall, 2012). The better prepared I am, the more at ease I will be during the interview. I’m a firm believer that the more intelligently you can speak to someone about their products or company, the more at ease they become with you. For my interview approach, I have decided to use the funnel structure, beginning with some general, open ended questions, and then getting more detailed as the interview progresses. My reasoning behind this; top executives in a company, in my opinion, are very adamant about who’s in charge. They did not get to where they are by letting people step all over them and run any part of the show in their presence. The last thing they’d want is a systems analyst coming in and trying to lead a topic of conversation they may be very passionate about. According to Kendall and Kendall, “Using the funnel structure method provides and easy, nonthreatening way to begin an interview (2012, p. 109). I think if I start out this way, it may put them at ease, keeping them in the power position, but still getting me the information I need to proceed. I’d need to establish a few interview objectives as well. One key here is that I’m already interviewing the person that seems to be the most senior manager regarding an update to the company’s accounting system, the chief accountant. According to author Martin Modell, “From him or her the analyst will obtain an overview of the user area, an overview of the functions performed by that area, and an idea of how the area fits within the overall structure of the organization and its activities” (2007, p. 7). I’d like to get a feel for how information moves and is processed within the accounting department, how decisions are made and how often, and determine the quality of that information. There is also a need to consider as well many HCI concerns such as the usability of the system, how it fits a user’s capabilities, where their information sources come from, and what format it’s in (Kendall and Kendall, 2012). Knowing what I need to accomplish here, which is to obtain a detailed picture of the company and its use of their accounting system, I feel it necessary to not only interview the chief accountant, but also his four subordinates that use the system. As long as time provides me with that luxury, it would seem since there are only four of them, this should not be too much of an issue. I would however switch my interviewing techniques to that of the pyramid structure. Knowing that I may be seen more in an authoritative role in these interviews, this technique allows the interviewee time to warm up a bit to the topic at hand. Once I have them in a comfortable position, my questions can become a bit more open ended and allow for broader, more detailed responses (Kendall and Kendall, 2012). For this scenario, I will have chosen not to interview customers directly. Whether it would be by surveys, phone calls, direct mail, or online questionnaires, I have made the decision that time is of the essence, and I don’t have that luxury here. That’s not to say we can’t use some information from customers in determining the needs of the company’s automated accounting functions. An option would be for my team to take a look at any actual invoices from customers to determine any potential flaws that may be there. Missing payments, inverted account numbers, misspelled names, old accounts that have been closed for years and not needed anymore; these are just some things I feel can be found in documentation already on file with the company, and may provide some insight into why an upgrade is needed. Once again, the term preparedness comes up when choosing to send my initial interviewee a set of questions prior to our actual face to face interview. This time, instead of my preparedness, we’re speaking of the interviewee’s preparation. Again, since we’re speaking to the chief accountant, I feel it’s good to extend the courtesy of letting them think a bit about some of the questions they’ll be asked. They’ll be better prepared to speak to the issues, and again this may help them keep that sense of being “in control” of the process. With that in mind, the following are three questions I would present to the chief accountant:
1) What determining factors lead you to believe that your accounting system needed to be upgraded?
2) What are some of the functions you’d like to see improved upon in an upgraded system?
3) Describe several ways this new system could improve customer relations?
This should get me off to a great start and will hopefully lead to a very successful interview.
Part 2 – Prototyping as an Option for a Systems Analyst

From the scenario at hand, in which Flo Chart seems a bit frustrated when it comes to figuring out her users’ wants and needs, it seems she can use a little help understanding the benefits of prototyping. Employing this methodology will enable her to get a better grasp of what her users are looking for. How she can get this information is what we’ll discuss here. Prototyping itself is exactly what it sounds like, building a model of something. If you wanted to reinvent the toaster, you’d have to build several prototypes, or models, first, and then determine what works, and what still needs improvement. With information systems it is no different. According to Vicki Sauter, “Prototyping is the process of building a model of a system…and prototypes are employed to help system designers build an information system that’s intuitive and easy to manipulate for end users” (Sauter, 1999, paragraph 1). What Flo needs to understand is that by proceeding with the prototype method, her users would get “hands on” experience with it throughout the development process. They would get a working model, and would be able to test drive it, giving immediate feedback if something is not the way they want it. These users would be part of the building process for the entire project. Flo Chart would certainly get first hand reaction to exactly what the users are thinking. And, according the Kendall and Kendall, “Information gathered in the prototyping phase allows the analyst to set priorities and redirect plans inexpensively, with a minimum of disruption” (2012, p. 156). With a hands-on approach like this, it’s going to be much easier for the users to express what it is they actually need the system to do. Without it, it’s going to be much tougher for Flo Chart to understand their needs. Not everyone was an English major in college, and not everyone can write eloquent prose and give in depth analysis of what they want in written form. In Flo’s case, these users may be able to work the system blindfolded at a keyboard, but may struggle when it comes to describing it. Get them in front of a prototype, and let them “show” you what’s going on, and they’ll be much more productive.

References

Kendall, K. & Kendall, J. (2011), Systems Analysis and Design, 8E. Upper Saddle River, NJ; Pearson Education, Inc.; Prentice Hall.

Modell, M. (2007), A Professional’s Guide to Systems Analysis, 2nd Edition, McGraw-Hill Book Company, New York, NY; 1996. Retrieved March 3, 2012 from http://www.martymodell.com/pgsa2/pgsa07.html

Sauter, V. (May 26, 1999) University of Missouri-St. Louis, What is Prototyping? Retrieved March 18, 2012 from http://www.umsl.edu/~sauterv/analysis/prototyping/proto.html…...

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Systems Methodology

...Excellence journal in 1990. The author provides a commentary on the quality movement of this period, and shares findings from his doctoral research project into TQM, which was undertaken from 1988 to 1992. To the author’s knowledge, this was the first doctorate in the UK that was solely focused on TQM. It therefore provides a unique glimpse into the period when interest in TQM was probably at its greatest and models and frameworks of TQM were first emerging. The doctorate was entitled ‘The development of a framework to assist in the implementation of TQM’. This paper describes the views of quality practitioners on TQM at that time and shows the most commonly used quality improvement activities (65 tools and techniques) that had been implemented by TQM companies. The methodology encompassed structured interviews at 21 TQM companies. The research contributed to the understanding of TQM by presenting the quality activities of which it can be composed, as well as the areas of the organisation the quality activities primarily address. The research is still of value today, and can assist organisations in determining which quality activities to use to improve performance in specific areas of operation. The research presented here has previously been peer reviewed and published. However, this is the first time these important research findings have been presented in an academic journal. Keywords: TQM; history of quality; quality improvement Background It is a pleasure and an honour to......

Words: 4576 - Pages: 19

Free Essay

Soft System Methodology

...Master thesis in Informatics REPORT NO. 2008:034 ISSN: 1651-4769 Department of Applied Information Technology Soft Systems Methodology in action: A case study at a purchasing department Using SSM to suggest a new way of conducting financial reporting at a purchasing department in the automotive industry OLLE L. BJERKE IT Universtiy of Göteborg Chalmers University of Technology and Universtiy of Gothenburg Göteborg, Sweden 2008 1 Using Soft Systems Methodology at a purchasing department to conduct a study of financial reporting needs Olle L. Bjerke Department of Applied Information Technology IT University of Göteborg Göteborg University and Chalmers University of Technology SUMMARY The aim of this essay has been to try out Soft Systems Methodology on financial reporting at Volvo Cars Corporation (VCC). VCC saw a possible opportunity to improve their reporting processes, and SSM was chosen to deal with this possible problematic situation. Action Research became the natural way of conducting the study since it is almost a mandatory way of conducting SSM. A delimitation was made due to limited resources and only a small part of the purchasing department was involved, namely electrical purchasing. The result of the study is the artifacts from the different SSM steps that points upon how the participants would like the reporting system to be as well as many issues with the current reporting process. These outputs from the method were regarded as......

Words: 51189 - Pages: 205

Free Essay

Formal System Development Methodologies

...Formal System Development Methodologies Carissa Robinson Grayson June 6, 2010 Formal systems development methodologies, also sometimes referred to as Formal Methods, are used to model systems using mathematics. By using mathematics to model a complex system, properties of the system can be verified without empirical testing. (Collins) Formal systems development methodologies are different from other design systems through formal verification, the principles are proven correct before they are accepted. Traditional design systems have been used to verify behavior but testing is capable of only finite conclusions. (Collins) Formal design is usually a three step process. * Step one is when the engineer decides how a system will be using a modeling language. This step is similar to the formal software engineering technique developed by many others. This step helps the engineer to define their problems, goals and solutions. * Step two is the step that deals with verification. Formal methods put a huge emphasis on provability and correctness. Verification is difficult because even the simplest system has at least a dozen theorems that which all must be proven. * Step three is the implementation step. Once the model has been verified, the implementation must then be converting into code. (Collins) There are two important benefits of formal methods. The benefits would be discipline and precision. In formal systems, an engineer is required to......

Words: 1255 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Identifying the Operating System

...Identifying the Operating System The operating system for my computer is Windows 7 Enterprise. It was installed with Service Pack 1. Some of the features included with Windows 7 are Direct access, Branch Cache, Federated Search, BitLocker and BitLocker To Go, AppLocker, Virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) optimizations and Multilingual user interface. Here is a list I found on the Microsoft website stated below. * DirectAccess:  Give mobile users seamless access to corporate networks without a need to VPN. * BranchCache:  Decrease the time branch office users spend waiting to download files across the network. * Federated Search:  Find information in remote repositories, including SharePoint sites, with a simple user interface. * BitLocker and BitLocker To Go:  Help protect data on PCs and removable drives, with manageability to enforce encryption and backup of recovery keys. * AppLocker:  Specify what software is allowed to run on a user's PCs through centrally managed but flexible Group Policies. * Virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) optimizations:  Improved user experience for VDI with multimon and microphone support, which have the ability to reuse virtual hard drive (VHD) images to boot a physical PC. * Multilingual user interface: Create a single OS image for deployment to users worldwide. My computer has the following for processor, ram, and system type, and disc space: * Processor: Intel® Celeron® 2957U @...

Words: 318 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Identifying the Operating System

...Identifying the Operating System * NT1110 Module 1 My home computer is a new Dell Inspiron 15 3000 series. It has the Windows 7 edition with a Service Pack 1. The Windows 7 edition brings a more responsive and lively feel, and the start menu is just right. With this edition, Microsoft has also recognized the need for improved desktop responsiveness, which gives the impression that the computer is responding to the user and that they are in control. Compatibility on Windows 7 is definently far better than that of Vista. And many programs that were used on Windows XP did not work immediately and required updates, but with Windows 7 almost all applications that work on Vista should still run. In this regard, Windows Vista has definently paved the way for Windows 7. Lower hardware requirements is also a plus for Windows 7 because due to the reputation that Vista gained, making the more sophisticated hardware seem rather ordinary, will run well on lower end hardware, making the transition from Windows XP less painful. Windows 7 also has an improved search tool, which now rivals Mac OS X’s spotlight to be able to find what you need quickly and easily. For example, typing a word in the start menu will display it and split it up neatly into files, folders and applications, or typing “keyboard” will bring up the keyboard options within the control panel. Taskbar options are a lot more powerful since Vista. The taskbar icons are now larger and items are grouped......

Words: 369 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Accounting Information System Requirements

... Richard Jackson Xacc 210 November 7, 2014 Richard Vincent Accounting Information System Requirements Planning – project management objectives and techniques - The very first phase of a Accounting Information System Development is planning the project. This involves determination of the scope and objectives of the project, the definition of project responsibilities, control requirements, project phases, budgets, and final products Analysis - The analysis phase is used to determine and document the accounting and business processes used by the company. These accounting processes are usually redesigned to take advantage of the operating characteristics of modern system solutions. Data Analysis is a review of the accounting information that is currently being collected by a company. Current data are then compared to the data that the organization should be using for managerial purposes. This method is used primarily when designing accounting transaction processing systems. Decision Analysis is a review of the decisions that a manager is responsible for making. The primary decisions that managers are responsible for are identified on an individual basis. Then models are created to support the manager in gathering financial and related information to develop and design alternatives, and to make actionable choices. This method is valuable when the primary objective of the system is decision support. Process Analysis is a review of the company business processes. The......

Words: 302 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Proposed System Requirements

...Proposed System Requirements The ability to anticipate what customers will purchase during a particular period becomes a strong advantage for Kudler Fine Foods. Currently, the store tracks purchases per transaction for reporting and financial purposes. However, it is far more advantageous to know in advance the products shoppers are likely to buy. Analyzing system capabilities determine the requirements for such a project. Nonfunctional system requirements are also important. The analysis of nonfunctional system requirements include sustaining the usability, speed, efficiency, capabilities, and security features of the Point of Sale systems when tracking transactions from Point of Sale registers. The operational requirements entail modified software programming to track customer purchases, initially generating account numbers as identifiers for each participating program customer. Increasing the communications performance of the Point of Sale system to handle the amount of transaction data transferred for each customer account is essential. The system will support multiple registers and data transactions simultaneously and efficiently as illustrated in Diagram 2: High-Level Logical Data Flow. The next phase entails a review of functional system requirements. Diagram 2: High-Level Logical Data Flow The functional requirements of Kudler Fine Foods’ information systems include the capacity to accumulate and store data files resulting from customer purchases, facilitate......

Words: 304 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Identifying the Operating System

...I currently own a Dell laptop computer which currently uses Windows 8.1 for the operating system. There are a few new features to this service pack. From some of the people that I have talked to about this I have been told that there really isn’t much difference but here is what I have found. The Power and Search buttons on the Start screen are now a little bit different. “These buttons appear in the upper-right corner of the Start screen next to your account picture. You'll be able to quickly and easily shut down your PC or search for things right from Start (Some types of PCs don't have the Power button on Start. You can shut down your PC using the Power button in the Settings charm instead.)” (http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-8/whats-new). “All open and pinned apps appear in the taskbar. If you like using the desktop, you'll see both desktop apps and apps from the Windows Store in your taskbar when they're running. You can also pin any app to the taskbar so you can quickly open or switch between apps from the desktop.” (http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-8/whats-new). You can also get to the taskbar from anywhere or go to the desktop to sign in instead of the Start screen.” If you spend more time in the desktop, you can sign in (boot) directly to the desktop instead of the Start screen. And if you want to sign in to Start instead, you can change this setting at any time.” (http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-8/whats-new). One of the other features...

Words: 656 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

System Requirements

...1. Read the JAD session summary in the Data Library and put together a bullet list of system requirements for the TIMS project. Separate your list into the five requirement categories: input, output, process, performance, and controls. This will be graded upon whether you listed all of the requirements stated in the JAD session and whether you put the requirements in the correct categories. Thus, you need to simply list the five requirement categories and, under each one, use bullet points to list the requirements stated in the JAD session for that category. For Output • The Web site must report online volume statistics every four or five hours, and hourly during peak periods. • The inventory system must produce a daily report showing the part number, description, quantity on hand, allocated, available, and unit cost of all sorted by part number. • The registering system must provide suppliers with up to date specification. • The student analysis system must produce a quarterly report that identifies. • TIMS will manage class scheduling, handle student registration, track classes that are conducted, and produce various kinds of output. For Input • The school district head must enter overtime hours on a separate screen. • The accounting system will need an update so we can reconcile student accounts and bill corporate clients for any unpaid balances. • Student grades must be entered on machine-scannable forms prepared by the instructor. • Each input form......

Words: 454 - Pages: 2

Free Essay

Methodology of Information System Development

...AND MULTIMEDIA COMMUNICATION MEI 2015 CDAD2103 METHODOLOGY OF INFORMATION SYSTEM DEVELOPMENT Contents 1.1 Introduction 1 1.2 Methodology 1 1.3 Types of Software developing life cycles (SDLC) 2 1. Waterfall Model 2 2. V-Shaped Model 4 3. Evolutionary Prototyping Model 5 4. Spiral Method (SDM) 7 5. Iterative and Incremental Method 8 6. Extreme programming (Agile development) 10 1.4 CASE (computer-aided software engineering) 11 1.5 Conclusion 16 Introduction System development methodology is a standard process followed in an organization to conduct all the steps necessary to analyze, design, implement, and maintain information systems. Organizations use a standard set of steps, called system development methodology to develop and support their information systems. Like many processes, the development of information systems often follows a life cycle. For example, a commercial product such as a Nike sneaker or a Honda car follows a life cycle; it is created, tested and introduced to the market. Its sales increase, peak and decline. Finally, the product is removed from the market and is replaced with something else. Many options exist for developing information systems, but the most common methodology for system development in many organizations is system development life cycle. However, it is important to know other alternative development methodology available in order to maximize the development......

Words: 2577 - Pages: 11

Premium Essay

Identifying the Operating System

...Identifying the Operating System The operating system that I will be identifying will be from my lab computer. It already comes installed with Windows 7 Enterprise Service Pack 1. Before it can be upgraded to Windows 8.1, the firmware and the USB would need to be updated because it is not compatible. Windows 8.1 is the latest version of Microsoft windows and has a completely new appearance from the prior versions. There are five features that will be discussed that comes with the installed service pack. The first one will be direct access which allows you to connect to a corporate network that you work at through internet access and without having to be connected to a virtual private network (VPN). It provides increased productivity for mobile work force. Because of this, you are not required to be in the office, you could be at home or traveling somewhere and still is able to have access to your work as if you are at the desk. Even with this access, it doesn’t stop the IT Administrators from being able to update software or policy settings provided by the company. Another feature is Federated search and enterprise search scopes which enables the user to search files through Windows explorer and be able to open it and work with the file no matter where it is located. Sharepoint portals were created to enable migration of important content to centralized content stores. The App locker provides the ability to control what software can be run which reduces......

Words: 362 - Pages: 2

Free Essay

Soft System Methodology

...Soft Systems Methodology A report by Dale Couprie Alan Goodbrand Bin Li David Zhu Department of Computer Science University of Calgary Table of Contents. Abstract. Introduction Map Stage 1. Problem situation unstructured. Stage 2. Problem Situation expressed. Rich Pictures Illustration of Stage 1 and Stage 2 as a whole in SSM Pitfalls that must be avoided. Stage 3: Naming of Relevant Systems Root Definitions CATWOE Stage 4: Conceptual Models Systems Thinking Formal Systems Model Monitoring a System Stage 5: Comparing Conceptual Models with Reality Using Conceptual Models as a Base for Ordered Questioning Comparing History with Model Prediction General Overall Comparison Model Overlay Stages 6 and 7. Implementing Feasible and Desirable Changes Case Study - Rethinking a Service Function in the Shell Group Stages 1 and 2 Stage 3: Naming of Relevant Systems Stage 4: Conceptual Models Stage 5: Comparing Conceptual Models with Reality Stages 6 and 7. Implementing Feasible and Desirable Changes Observations and Conclusions Exercise References Figures. Figure 1. Figure 2. Figure 3. Figure 4. Figure 5. Figure 6. Soft Systems Methodology map. Transformation process for producing Rich Picture. The routing of Systems Thinking. Shell's MF Rich Picture. Shell's MF world view of training. Shell's MF training conceptual model. Tables. Table 1. One to one transformations involving different world views. Table 2. Shell's Comparison with reality. Abstract This document deals......

Words: 6553 - Pages: 27

Premium Essay

Identifying Operating Systems

...Identifying the Operating System Alonzo Colbert ITT Technical Institute NT1110: Computer Structure and Logic_V1.0 Identifying the Operating System Identify the operating system in your home or lab computer. The operating system that I am currently using is Windows 10 Education-Copyright 2015 Microsoft Corporation. There are several features that the Windows 10 operating system features; I will talk about the ones I use most. Personally, the Snap feature is my favorite (Windows 10 Features). I love that I am able to use simple commands to size windows next to each other quickly. This is helpful in school when I need to look at multiple screens at once. The 64-bit support is another useful feature for my school purposes (Windows 10 Features). As a student I will need to be able to access information quickly. According to the Windows website it simply describes the 64-bit system as better equipped to handle information (Windows 10 Features). Cortana feature is a close first place in my favorites (Windows 10 Features). I love the fact that I can use her like SIRI on apple products. There is so much you can do with Cortana (Windows 10 Features). Can ask her just about anything on your personal computer or online and she will find it for you. the new photo feature scheme is something i also enjoy (Windows 10 Features). It makes things so much easier to find. When it comes to my family photos. No more searching around my personal computer to find my photos (Windows 10......

Words: 635 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Identifying Diffferent Operating Systems

...Identifying the operating system In this lab I will be discussing how I identified my home PC’s operating system. I will provide different features of my operating system, provide the processor speed, amount of RAM and, disk space on my PC. I will finally determine if I can upgrade my software or not. Now I will identify the processor and speed of my operating system. I currently have a Intel Pentium CPU G645, the speed of the processor runs at 290 GHz. I am currently running Windows 10 home edition which is the latest version, the operating system runs at 64 bits. Next I will provide the amount of RAM in my operating PC. The amount of internal storage that I have is not much its only 4 GB, but I have a 2 TB external hard drive that I run on both my XBOX one and my PC. I don’t believe I can upgrade my operating system anymore due to the fact that I recently did the windows 10 update, I previously had windows 8. Windows 10 is significantly different and has a ton of new features which I will get into a few of them right now. The source where I got the information on the five features that I will discuss is www.windows.microsoft.com. First of the five features that I am discussing is that windows 10 came out with there own browser called Microsoft edge which is far more superior the previous web browser internet explorer. The windows 10 has improved their photo images and made it easier to navigate photo folders and sub folders easier from your hard drive and......

Words: 503 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Identifying Change Requirement

...Identifying Change Requirement 3. a. Requirements for change Many factors require Fast Track Couriers Pty Ltd to change. Such as significant alterations in customer expectations and demand, new technologies, competitors with innovative business models, effective communication and influence, shifts in workforce behaviour and values and Human resource management. b. How identified change needs link to the organization’s strategic plan/ goals. To ensure the projected growth of 7.5% in market share, the organization can use proven and prudent marketing techniques to understand the market segments, create the correct messaging, ensure proper delivery and receipt of those messages, and adjust messaging and marketing approach based upon feedback. E.g - Many delivery services have their own smartphone apps. The lack of a mobile application can be a huge weakness for the company. New organizational capabilities; talents and skills possessed by employees need to be built in order to utilise technology such as PDA devices and GPS. Strategic communications is a key change requirement. It is required to support the implementation of inter-departmental transformation. Transparent and frequent communication is essential to effective change management especially with drivers and employees with resistance. 4. Review the organization’s current state Fast Track Courier Pty Ltd is a privately held company that has been operating in NSW in the last 15 years. Its primary......

Words: 1156 - Pages: 5