In a general sense, the term information system (IS) refers to a system of people, data records and activities that process the data and information in an organisation, and it includes the organisation’s manual and automated processes. In a narrow sense, the term information system (or computer-based information system) refers to the specific application software that is used to store data records in a computer system and automates some of the information-processing activities of the organisation.
Information systems are computer systems that support end users, giving them access to the information. For a large number of systems the information is held in databases and access is via database management systems. Information systems perform a variety of tasks. While all of the information processes are represented in information systems, the emphasis more on the processes or organising, storing and retrieving with database systems and hypermedia.
For most businesses, there are a variety of requirements for information. Senior managers need information to help with their business planning. Middle management needs more detailed information to help them monitor and control business activities. Employees with operational roles need information to help them carry out their duties.
As a result, businesses tend to have several “information systems” operating at the same time. The main kinds of information systems in business are described briefly below:
Transaction Processing Systems (TPS) – As the name implies, Transaction Processing Systems (“TPS”) are designed to process routine transactions efficiently and accurately. A business will have several (sometimes many) TPS; for example:
– Billing systems to send invoices to customers
– Systems to calculate the weekly and monthly payroll and tax payments
– Production and purchasing systems to calculate raw material requirements
– Stock control systems to process all movements into, within and out of the business…
An information system (IS) can be defined as “a set of inter-related components working together to collect, retrieve, process, store and distribute information in order to facilitate the planning, control, coordination, analysis and decision making in companies and other organizations