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AIS DEVELOPMENT STRATEGIES INTRODUCTION Questions to be addressed in this chapter: How do organizations buy software, hardware, and vendor services? How do information systems departments develop custom software? How do end users develop, use and control computer-based information systems? Why do organizations outsource their information systems, and what are the benefits and risks of doing so? How are prototypes used to develop an AIS, and what are the advantages and disadvantages? What is computer-aided software engineering, and how is it used in systems development? Companies can experience a number of difficulties in developing an AIS, including backlogged projects, systems that don’t meet needs, systems that take forever, users who can’t specify their needs, and post-specification changes. We’ll be discussing how to obtain a new information system by purchasing prewritten software; developing software in-house; or outsourcing. We’ll also discuss how to hasten or improve the development process through business process reengineering, prototyping, and computer-aided software engineering (CASE) tools. PURCHASING PRE-WRITTEN SOFTWARE Commercially available software packages are now outpacing custom-developed software as old systems are replaced. Canned software is sold on the open market to a broad range of users with similar requirements. Some companies sell hardware and software together as a package, called turnkey systems . A problem with canned software is that if often does not meet all a company’s needs, which may be overcome with modifications. Companies can also acquire software through application service providers (ASPs). ASPs host web-based software and deliver it to clients over the Internet. Companies don’t have to buy, install, or maintain canned software; they simply “rent” it. ASPs can reduce software costs, automate software upgrades, scale up as the business grows, provide global access to information, provide access to skilled IT personnel, and let the company focus on its core competencies. Companies that buy rather than develop software still follow the SDLC process, including systems analysis, conceptual design, physical design, implementation and conversion, and operation and maintenance. Selecting a vendor --Deciding whether to make or buy software can be made independently of the decision to acquire hardware, service, maintenance, and other AIS resources. The preceding resources can be bought independently of the software. But hardware and vendor decisions may depend on the software decisions. Acquiring Hardware and Software --Once AIS requirements have been defined, the organization can buy software and hardware. When buying large or complex systems, a request for proposal (RFP), should be prepared. The RFP is an invitation to bidders to propose a system by a specific date. Each proposal is evaluated, and finalists are investigated in depth. Chapter 19: AIS Development Strategies
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This note was uploaded on 01/22/2011 for the course COB acct taught by Professor Smith during the Fall '09 term at California Coast University.

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