IS Quality: Developing a framework to support management teams in determining the quality of their IS services and outputs

27 Apr

IS Quality

Developing a framework to support management teams in determining the quality of their IS services and outputs:

In my last post, I reviewed and discussed more about factors that cause the failure of Information Systems in organisations and how they can be avoided. I also talked about the success factors and how best to make them happen in order to achieve positive outputs that IS could offer to Firms and Organisations. However, in this post, I will further my review and discussions on Information Systems quality in relation , and with reference to business intelligence, also connecting with comments to some key points discussed in other blogs I have read. I will also include some of my findings from social media making News around the world.


I keeping with team spirit, I would like to congratulate my Blog colleague with the author; davidoppermann who is also blogging on IS Quality, for the visual representations in his last blog entitled; (Fox or Hedgehog? A Guide to Developing a Framework for Decision Makers). Nevertheless, I will be quick to suggest that we should mix any chosen framework with some points to illustrate the likely positive results or outcome of such framework in relation to IS quality in organisations. In his analogies, he focused more, if not only, on the conceptual framework from Marc Clifton without telling us the exact or anticipated values IS could derive from such framework if implemented. This, I believe will help our team and even a granny to understand what we are talking about, thereby reducing much of brain storming for our readers. However, he did a good research.

Business Intelligence (BI) in relation to IS Quality:  

According to Solomon Negash (2004), in order to improve the timeliness and quality of inputs in decision process, Business intelligence systems therefore, combine operational data with analytical tools to present complex and competitive information to planners and decision makers. Negash in his own words defined Business Intelligence Systems as follows: “BI systems combine data gathering, data storage, and knowledge management with analytical tools to present complex internal and competitive information to planners and decision makers”. In furtherance to the above, Negash stressed that, business intelligence is a mirror-image with which firms’ capabilities in terms of; the-state-of-the-art, trends, future directions in the markets, the regulatory environment for competition, as well as competitors’ actions and the implications of their actions can be clearly understood.

From the above definition, we can understand that BI systems deliver actionable information at the right time, at the right location, and in the right form to help improve timeliness and quality of inputs to decision making process. According to Langseth and Vivatrat (2003), business intelligence can be view as proactive, and has the following components: real-time data warehousing, data mining, automated anomaly and exception detection, data visualisation, proactive alerting with automatic recipient determination, geographical information systems, etc.

Figure 1 below illustrates how BI uses various available information inputs to achieve the intelligence needed for decision making in organisation.

OLAP = On-Line Analytic Processing, DW = Data Warehousing, DM = Data Mining, EIS = Executive Information System, and ERP = Enterprise Requirement Planning.

Figure 1: Inputs to Business Intelligence Systems (Business Intelligence by S. Negash).

This article describes BI as a natural outgrowth of former systems designed to support in decision making process. Business intelligence became stronger and more relevant with the support of data warehousing as a repository, data cleansing, hardware and software, and the internet technologies with prevalent user interface. Business intelligence gathers information from various other systems to build its proactive capabilities as shown in figure 2 below.

OLAP = On-Line Data Processing, CRM = Customer relationship Management, DSS = Decision Support Systems, GIS = Geographic Information Systems.

Figure 2: Business Intelligence Relation to Other Information Systems (Business Intelligence by S. Negash).

To conclude, Business Intelligence converts data into information and, through human analysis, is converted into knowledge.

IS Quality Helping to Reduce Environmental Degradation

The important information systems play in our lives and environments cannot be over emphasised. It is my opinion that the quality of information system can only be measured by its outputs. Information Systems has continued to advance in so many ways, and in trying to change not only the way we do business, but also the way we live our live and how we conduct and protect our environment for the future generations yet unborn. The IS quality has greatly manifested itself in the campaign against environment pollution in the world’s most populous industrial region China. Information system is an embodiment of data, people, process, and IT artefacts. The latest technological breakthrough has come from the campaign against environmental pollution which has lead to the production of fresh clean air in a can in China.

Fresh Clean Air in a Can is being distributed freely on the streets of Beijing China by a Chinese Philanthropist Chen Guangbiao. The Philanthropist predicts that in the next ten years masks will be used in Beijing due to massive air pollution currently eating deep into the environment.

The fresh air is being harvested from the less polluted rural areas of China such as Tibetan and Shansi provinces. Each of the fresh canned air will cost about ¥45 or about US$7, but Chen Guangbiao has promised to donate 80c from each can sold back to the rural community.

Considering the amount of smog infiltrating the entire environment in Beijing, Mr. Guangbiao may be absolutely right in his ten years’ use of masks prediction. It has been reported, that nearly 50 percent of patients in the outpatients’ ward in a Beijing hospital, including children are currently suffering from respiratory related diseases. As at Tuesday 29 January, the reading from the air quality shows 400 in Beijing.  That is the index which measures particulate Matter in the air with a diameter of 2.5 micrometres, known as PM2.5. A level of 300 is considered to be dangerous, and the World Health Organisation recommends a daily level of no more than 20.

Should the authorities concerned not make serious efforts to bring this situation under control, it is no doubt that in no distance time, air will seriously become an essential commodity which the poor cannot afford to buy in China, and maybe, in due course, in some other countries too, and gradually so, the world will be drifting to, not only environmental degradation, but to what I may term “global environmental holocaust”.

Follow the link below and take a view on how fast the world is advancing in Information Technology (Source: – (“Canned Air” Hitting Beijing’s Smog-Filled Streets)).


  1. Solomon Negash: Computer Science and Information Systems Department

Kennesaw State University; (Communication for the Association for Information systems (Volume 13, 2004) 177 – 195):

  1. (“Canned Air” Hitting Beijing’s Smog-Filled Streets).

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