Background to the Study
The term management information system (MIS) is a relatively recent addition to the vocabulary of management and was widely adopted following the accelerated use of computers in the early 1960s. Prior to that time, electronic data processing (EDP) was the most frequently used term to describe the computer usage. This earlier stage reflects the view that the computer was little more than a fast calculator for large scale, routine, clerical applications which had formerly been done manually. As these computer applications became more complex, hardware storage capacities grew and technology improved for connecting previously isolated applications. As more and more data were stored and linked, managers sought greater detail as well as greater abstraction with the aim of creating management reports from the raw stores data.
The term “MIS” arose describe such applications providing managers with information about sales, inventories and other data help in managing the enterprise and also improving planning and control of operations needed for effective decision making by managers.
According to the oxford advanced learners dictionary, management can be defined as the cat of running and controlling a business or similar organizations. While information based on the oxford learners dictionary can be seen as facts or details about somebody or something then system is a group of things, pieces of equipment etc that are connected or work together, we can now define MIS as a process by which equipments are connected together in order to provide individuals with information necessary for the upkeep of their organization which can as well be controlled.
Information can be seen as raw data that has been processed into meaningful and useful context that has been processed into meaningful and useful context for specific end users (Brian 2002). This information can also be seen as data shaped into a meaningful form for human being to use. Information which is seen as the backbone and bedrock of any organization may be internal or external depending on the kind of information which would be of use to the organization.
Before the processing of information for useful context, facts, figures, numbers, symbols etc were seen as raw data which was gotten from individuals and places. In order to make raw data become information, it needed the help of the information system (IS) to process these raw data into information and make them ready for the upkeep of the organization. Okolo (2011) defined information system as a set of interrelated components that collect, retrieve, process, store and distribute information to support decision making, coordination and control in an organization. In addition, it also helps managers and workers to analyze problems, visualize complex subjects and create new products. Before now, paper based work were recorded as information with duplicates in a file for reference purpose until when the computer age came invoke and reframed all methods of which information were kept into becoming technologically wise.
The information system may have a combination of people who are the end users of the information, the hardware – the devices used in the processing of information, the software –the instructions which you give to the computer which then involve the system analyst or programmers as the case may be. This programmer/ system analyst creates a design by which users of the information can manage their organization effectively.
What then is Management Information System?
Management Information System (MIS) according to Brian (2002) is the collection of data processing equipment, procedures, software and people that integrate the subsystems of the organization and provides information for decision making on planning and controlling operations. This entails the collection of raw data, the step to follow, the instruction to give, specialist that will help in integrating the software into the system so as to produce information needed by the organization for the day to day running of the business. A management information system is an integrated man machine system that provides information to support the planning and control function of managers in an organization. The word integrated man machine involves the collection of the machines/equipments with the people involved in the information. Once the result of an MIS is information, it serves as a managerial function. Who then is an office manager? Since an office is a room or a building where an individual works and a manager is a person who is in charge of running a business or a similar organization. We then collectively define an office manager as an individual who coordinates and controls the activities of his colleague under his care. An office manager can be seen as one has the administrative responsibilities of office management. He is seen as an individual distinct from the other employee. He directs, supervises and co-ordinate the affairs of his employee making sure that they work effectively and efficiently towards high productivity.
An office manager may not just mean an individual with massive control. It could mean an individual with massive control. It could mean any person/individual who is in hold of information to arrive at a decision. A student who is in hold of information is seen as an office manager because it is with this information that the support of decision making is known in an organization. That is why it is said that when a system provides information to persons who are not managers, then it will not be considered as part of a management information system.
Management Information System help management design information system that provide them with information about events occurring inside the organization as well as in its external environment which is vital for effective decision making. Management Information System according to Okolo (2011) can be defined as a system to convert data from internal and external source into information and communicate that information in an appropriate form to managers at all level to enable them make timely and effective decision making for planning, directing and controlling the activities for which they are responsible. An example of organizations that uses the design of management information system in managing information effectively is the banks. They have database of their customers and clients and it is with their databases that the management information systems are been designed and managed effectively.
Management should ensure that equipment needed for the retrieval and distribution of information are upgraded with the help of the system analyst. Management as well must be involved in making effective contribution to the system designs of their organization and likewise and the analyst must be aware of the managerial needs so that jointly, more effective management information systems are developed.