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Systems Analysis

The process of understanding and specifying in detail what the information system should accomplish.

Systems Design

The process of specifying in detail how the many components of the information system should be physically implemented.

Systems Analyst

A business professional who uses analysis and design techniques to solve business problems using information technology.

Analyst's Approach to Problem Solving

Research & understand the problem > Verify that the benefits of solving the problem outweigh the costs > Define the requirements for solving the problem > Develop a set of possible solutions (alternatives) > Decide which solution is best, and make a recommendation > Define the details of the chosen solution > Implement the solution > Monitor to make sure that you obtain the desired results


A collection of interrelated components that function together to achieve some outcome.

Information System

A collection of interrelated components that collect, process, store, and provide as output the information needed to complete business tasks. (i.e., the School of Business)


A system that is part of a larger system. (i.e., the Information Systems Department in the school of buisness)

Functional Decomposition

Dividing a system into components based on subsystems that are further divided into smaller subsystems.

System Boundary

The separation between a system and its environment that inputs and outputs must cross.

Automation Boundary

The separation between the automated part of a system and the manual part of a system.

Customer Relation Management (CRM) System

A system that supports marketing, sales, and service operations involving direct and indirect customer interaction.

Supply Chain Management (SCM) System

A system that seamlessly integrates product development, product acquisition, manufacturing, and inventory management.

Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) System

A system that records accounting information needed to produce financial statements and other reports used by investors and creditors.

Human Resource Management (HRM) System

A system that supports employee-related tasks such as payroll, benefits, hiring, and training.

Manufacturing Management System

A system that controls internal production processes that turn raw materials into finished goods.

Collaboration Support System (CSS)

A system that enables geographically distributed personnel to collaborate on projects and tasks.

Business Intelligence System

A system that supports strategic planning and decision making.

Enterprise Resource Planning

A process in which an organization commits to using an integrated set of software packages for key information systems.


A centrally managed collection of data that is accessible to many users and systems at the same time.


Software products used to help develop analysis and design specifications and completed system components.


Strategies for completing specific system development activities.

Soft Skills

Skills in nontechnical areas such as interviewing, team management, and leadership.

Hard Skills

Skills in technical areas such as database design, programming, and telecommunications.

Business Process Reengineering

A technique that seeks to alter the nature of the work done in a business function, with the objective of radically improving performance.

Strategic Planning

A process during which executives try to answer questions about the company, such as where the business is now, where they want the business to be, and what they have to do to get there.

Information Systems Strategic Plan

The plan defining the technology and applications that the information systems function needs to support the organization's strategic plan.

Application Architecture Plan

A description of the integrated information systems that the organization needs to carry out its business functions.

Technology Architecture Plan

A description of the hardware, software, and communications networks required to implement planned information systems.

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