u1 Article Accounting Information Systems.doc

These allow organizations to track the costs

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manufacturing and service environments. These allow organizations to track the costs associated with the production of goods and/or performance of services. In addition, the Accounting information systems can provide advanced analyses for improved resource allocation and performance tracking. Management accounting systems are used to allow organizational planning, monitoring, and control for a variety of activities. This allows managerial-level employees to have access to advanced reporting and statistical analysis. The systems can be used to gather information, to develop various scenarios, and to choose an optimal answer among alternative scenarios. DEVELOPMENT The development of an Accounting information systems includes five basic phases: planning, analysis, design, implementation, and support. The time period associated with each of these phases can be as short as a few weeks or as long as several years. Planning—project management objectives and techniques The first phase of systems development is the planning of the project. This entails determination of the scope and objectives of the project, the definition of project responsibilities, control requirements, project phases, project budgets, and project deliverables. Analysis The analysis phase is used to both determine and document the accounting and business processes used by the organization. Such processes are redesigned to take advantage of best practices or of the operating characteristics of modern system solutions. Data analysis is a thorough review of the accounting information that is currently being collected by an organization. Current data are then compared to the data that the organization should be using for managerial purposes. This method is used primarily when designing accounting transaction processing systems.
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Decision analysis is a thorough review of the decisions a manager is responsible for making. The primary decisions that managers are responsible for are identified on an individual basis. Then models are created to support the manager in gathering financial and related information to develop and design alternatives, and to make actionable choices. This method is valuable when decision support is the system’s primary objective. Process analysis is a thorough review of the organization’s business processes. Organizational processes are identified and segmented into a series of events that either add or change data. These processes can then be modified or reengineered to improve the organization’s operations in terms of lowering cost, improving service, improving quality, or improving management information. This method is appropriate when automation or reengineering is the system’s primary objective. Design The design phase takes the conceptual results of the analysis phase and develops detailed, specific designs that can be implemented in subsequent phases. It involves the detailed design of all inputs, processing, storage, and outputs of the proposed accounting system. Inputs may be defined using screen layout tools and application generators. Processing can be shown through the use of
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