Evaluation of Information Systems: A Case Stdy of a Manufacturing Organisation
Computer-based information systems are increasingly used to enhance organisational performance without necessarily reducing headcount or operational costs. In consequence they can be extremely difficult to cost-justify. An evaluation of improved corporate performance must take into consideration a range of benefits which are rarely easy to quantify, and in many cases are intangible and uncertain. The costs to the organisation may be equally difficult to assess. Costs such as capital and operational expenses for hardware and software, physical changes to the work environment, and staff training are reasonably clear, but there may also be more insidious long-term effects, e.g. a deskilling of work or decline in job satisfaction. In addition, user resistance to technological and accompanying organisational change is a natural phenomenon which is likely to manifest itself in some form, and at some cost, during implementation. Evaluation of information systems, to be comprehensive, must therefore go beyond the initial selection of hardware and software to include the organisational and technical issues of development, implementation and operation.
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