Information systems should try to balance between functionality, reliability, portability, performance, usability and maintainability for them to address the needs of their users. However, Piercy (2004) points that it is important to remember that there is no perfect system since future needs of the user groups keep on changing in addition to technological changes.
Nonetheless, a good system must address different demands and needs of its users in the present times and foreseeable future to have a balanced solution. Therefore, this paper seeks to evaluate the current system used by SGA in order to determine whether it is contributing to the intended outcomes of its user group. Thereafter, it makes some recommendations for the replacement of the system.
Analysis of the Effectiveness of the Current System
The current system has several attributes that makes it effective in its management of information. One of the core aspects that make the current system to be effective is its accuracy in its work performance. For that matter, the system is acknowledged to be effective since it is capable of processing data accurately which is most important in decision making for all stakeholders of SGA. Decisions are made based on accurate information and this has steered the institution to the right direction.
Furthermore, consistency is another attribute that is associated with the current students’ management information system. The system is able to produce uniform and consistent information in all levels of the institution which is key in decision making process as conclusions drawn from every level is consistent.
Nonetheless, the system ensures completeness of information in its information processing. For instance, the system applies validation technique that ensures that all required data is entered before processing moves to the next stage. In addition, this validation ensures only required data is entered. For example, in inputting information that relates to digits, the system does not allow entering of alphabetical letters. This makes sure that complete and right information are given hence making information processed to be complete and reliable.
Moreover, it is also imperative to acknowledge that the current system used by SGA is reliable in terms of performance. It is able to perform tasks quickly serve the needs of its users. For instance, grading of students can be done simultaneously in a short period of time which is opposed to the old manual system that used to take several days before marks could be computed for grading.
Strengths of the Current System
Strengths of the current system are drawn from its properties that make it more effective and reliable. Nonetheless, the most important strength of the current information system of SGA is that it has a comprehensive aspect that encompasses most administration aspect of the institution.
For instance, it has functionalities that manage student registration, creation of time table, measurement of students’ performance, students’ attendance record, management of clubs and societies. This is a big strength in this current system since other systems may not incorporate most of these aspects in one whole.
In addition, the current system is compatible to most platforms irrespective of their vendors. For instance, it is able to perform and operate on different operating systems such as Microsoft families, Linux families and Macintosh platforms. This gives SGA a lee way to choose to operate on any of the platform as the system can still operate effectively.
Limitations of the Current System
Notably, there is no single system that can be described as perfect in its design and functionality (Effy, 2009). Therefore, as any other information management system, the current system used by SGA comprises of several limitations that needs to be addressed in order to have relative good and balanced information system that can serve the current and foreseeable needs of the institution.
To begin with one of the major limitations that are noted from the current system is its security loopholes. The security issues expose the system to integrity related issues as system accessibility is exposed to unauthorized users who can compromise data its integrity. For instance, the system lacks a secure login feature which makes it vulnerable to accessibility by unwarranted people who may compromise integrity of data stored.
Moreover, the system lacks calendar feature. It is important to note calendar in school activities is quite important since every activity needs to be scheduled using this feature. This is a big limitation on part of the current system. Therefore, it makes it inefficient in addressing some of the needs of its users.
In addition, in the current times where web 2.0 technologies are changing the way organizational business are conducted, any organizational system need to appreciate this technologies. Therefore, it is a limitation that the current system lacks messaging capabilities which can be used to communicate with the students.
Furthermore, it is noted from the analysis of the system that it does not support web based access of information using a browser. For that matter, it makes it difficult to integrate the current system which internet services which are too useful in the entire management and communication of students’ information.
In respect to the limitations noted in the analysis of the current system, the papers proposes several recommendations that should be undertaken in order to improve management of students information by SGA.
Firstly, it recommends that the current system needs a replacement since it does not support the needs of SGA fully. In the design and development of the new system therefore, several feature need to be taken into account in order to have a system that address user needs. To begin with, the new system must have functionalities that generate reports and be able to manage users’ roles, instructors, courses and facilities.
Moreover, calendar functionality must be prioritized in the new system to help scheduling of activities. In addition, messaging and notification functionality must be incorporated in the new system to ensure easier communication with students. Furthermore, it will be imperative that new system encompass assessment and testing of students and enable displaying of result scores and produce transcripts.
In addition, the new system needs to incorporate a functionality that handles grading of coursework and roster processing. Moreover, web based course delivery functionality should also be part of the new system to be able to address different user needs.
Effy, O.(2009) Management Information Systems. London: Cengage Learning, Inc.
Piercy, N. (2004) Management Information System: The Technology Challenge. London: Croom Helm Ltd.