Introduction to Current Techniques for Effective ICT Development

Introduction to Current Techniques for Effective ICT Development

S.C. Lenny Koh (University of Sheffield, UK) and Stuart Maguire (University of Sheffield, UK)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-424-8.ch007
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Abstract

The development of information systems (IS) has for many years been regarded as the domain of the technical expert. In what appears to be a growing number of instances systems appear to be having negative effects on the organization. A regular spate of system failures may have identified serious flaws in the system development process. Organizations may often be significantly affected by the implementation of IS. Future IS development may increasingly be trans-organizational and therefore increase the potential for dysfunctionality. Even changing one line of code may have repercussions within a department/organization. To implement a totally integrated system within an organization without adequate preparation could have serious consequences for the financial well-being of the company. The development of information systems is a complex process, one with many opportunities for things to go wrong. To try and control this complex process a methodology was required that would bring more discipline to the IS development process. There is a need to make more efficient use of the resources that are available. Historically, IS has been developed using the system.development.life.cycle. (SDLC). This has been the prevailing methodology for medium and large system projects. However, the use of accepted methodologies for IS development have not guaranteed the successful implementation of information systems.
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Implementing Lean software development can lead to productivity gains of between 20% and 40% and that quality and speed of execution can improve markedly within a matter of months. Both valuable benefits when the cost of developing and maintaining applications now account for about 50% of the average I.T. budget – a figure that is set to rise in the future (McKinsey report dubbed “Applying Lean to Application Development and Maintenance 2007).

Until recently, many firms had bought business intelligence systems at a departmental level, resulting in myriad different tools being used across the business. Firms are now looking across the business to ensure a consistent, standardized approach to analyzing and measuring data which should also boost operational efficiency (Computer Weekly 2007).

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Introduction

The development of information systems (IS) has for many years been regarded as the domain of the technical expert. In what appears to be a growing number of instances systems appear to be having negative effects on the organization. A regular spate of system failures may have identified serious flaws in the system development process. Organizations may often be significantly affected by the implementation of IS. Future IS development may increasingly be trans-organizational and therefore increase the potential for dysfunctionality. Even changing one line of code may have repercussions within a department/organization. To implement a totally integrated system within an organization without adequate preparation could have serious consequences for the financial well-being of the company.

The development of information systems is a complex process, one with many opportunities for things to go wrong. To try and control this complex process a methodology was required that would bring more discipline to the IS development process. There is a need to make more efficient use of the resources that are available. Historically, IS has been developed using the system development life cycle (SDLC). This has been the prevailing methodology for medium and large system projects. However, the use of accepted methodologies for IS development have not guaranteed the successful implementation of information systems.

The information systems (IS) discipline has borrowed a number of techniques from other disciplines. However, many of these have been taken from areas where the outcome from projects is more certain. Virtually all projects are liable to have changing requirements. In IS there are many variables that need to be considered before, during, and after a project has been completed. It is one thing to identify what those variables are and another to react to the changing circumstances.

The question IS must address is whether it is inevitable that projects of a certain size and length will fail to deliver expected benefits. In essence IS is trying to hit a moving target. The ‘contract’ (user requirements) for a new information system is agreed at a comparatively early stage. All parties agree on requirements and the project development team retreats to build the system. This can be a lengthy process.

For a change in the system development process to take place participants must agree that the current methodologies are not working. This in itself is problematical. System developers are generally happier with a fixed set of requirements. What incentives are there for the various stakeholders to change the way system projects are currently handled?

The methodologies that support this process tend to provide more emphasis on control at the expense of planning. They would be more appropriate in static business environments. Even in this situation there will be project failures. The initial premise for an IS project should be that there will be change. The methodologies should then provide enough flexibility to allow for the forthcoming changes. Ideally a vision of the implemented system should be formulated at an early stage.

In many instances the full implications of change are not appreciated. If an information system is implemented in one area of the organization there are often knock-on effects elsewhere. Inevitably data and information often cut across departmental and functional boundaries. However, from the system developer’s perspective it is simpler to draw a tight boundary around the system. This may manifest itself through a narrow focus being taken i.e. only a small number of potential Users may be interviewed about the previous system and the possible effects of the new system.

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Table of Contents
Foreword
Elias G. Carayannis
Acknowledgment
Chapter 1
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
The issues that are currently affecting all managers are similar to those facing managers of ICT. The following is a list, though not exhaustive, of... Sample PDF
Review of Current ICT Developments
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Chapter 2
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
The ultimate reason why organizations develop information systems is so that their employees can make good decisions. If firms did not make... Sample PDF
Linking Information to Business Strategies and Decision-Making
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Chapter 3
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
The introduction of new IS can often have a significant effect on the business practices within an organization. It is important that a lack of... Sample PDF
Developing and Implementing an ICT Strategy
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Chapter 4
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
It is important for today’s dynamic organizations to develop a strong and sustainable links with outside organizations and agencies. It may be... Sample PDF
Strategic Alliance Through the Use of ICT
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Chapter 5
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
Information Systems (IS) has borrowed many techniques from other disciplines. However, many of these have been borrowed from areas where the outcome... Sample PDF
Planning and Managing ICT Change
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Chapter 6
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
The reason for going ahead with a new information system (IS) development can come from many sources. A new business requirement may force an... Sample PDF
Identifying Opportunities for Using ICT
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Chapter 7
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
The development of information systems (IS) has for many years been regarded as the domain of the technical expert. In what appears to be a growing... Sample PDF
Introduction to Current Techniques for Effective ICT Development
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Chapter 8
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
Nearly all information systems developments follow a structured approach. This is true of all projects. This chapter takes a critical look at both... Sample PDF
System Development and Project Management
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Chapter 9
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
If organizations were good at ICT planning there would not be as many information systems failures. There is a definite need for improved... Sample PDF
Critical Success Factors for ICT Development
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Chapter 10
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
For many organizations, the implementation of a new information system (IS) may be the biggest capital expenditure they undertake. If substantial... Sample PDF
Impediments to the Successful Implementation of ICT
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Chapter 11
Learning From Failures  (pages 176-206)
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
Strategic.failures can be defined as failures of achieving the expected benefits from the organizational, size and industrial sectors or countries’... Sample PDF
Learning From Failures
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Chapter 12
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
The Internet Cultural Era (ICE) has driven many Small and Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs) in the UK and Ghana to adopt ICT technology. This... Sample PDF
Drivers and Barriers for ICT Development
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Chapter 13
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
Although Boeing and Rolls-Royce are operating in the same aerospace industry sector and use ERP, but the ways that they implemented their systems... Sample PDF
Current Developments and Diffusions in ICT: ERP, SCM, CRM
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Chapter 14
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
Globalisation, modernisation and streamlining paradigms have driven many enterprises to use various e-Technologies in order to improve the... Sample PDF
E-Technology: E-Business, Intranet, Extranet, Internet
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Chapter 15
Knowledge Management  (pages 285-296)
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
Knowledge.Management can be defined as the critical issues of organisational adaptation, survival and competence against discontinuous environmental... Sample PDF
Knowledge Management
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Chapter 16
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
In information terms, security can be defined as the processes of ensuring that private information remains private and uncompromised in an... Sample PDF
Security and Risk Management
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Chapter 17
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
Commercial airlines face an extremely challenging operating and competitive environment. To remain in business they must comply with ever-changing... Sample PDF
Improving IT-Enabled Sense and Respond Capabilities: An Application of Business Activity Monitoring at Southern International Airlines
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Chapter 18
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
This case describes how banking in India has changed after developments in information technology in the last decade. The new private and foreign... Sample PDF
Competing in the Age of Information Technology in a Developing Economy: Experiences of an Indian Bank
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Chapter 19
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
The Telecommunications Act of 1996 opened competition in the telecommunications market in the U.S. and forced the incumbent telecommunications... Sample PDF
Developing a Telecommunication Operation Support Systems (OSS): The Impact of a Change in Network Technology
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Chapter 20
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
Nazar Group of Companies has been a leading producer and distributor of cookies, crackers, cakes, chocolate, and other products in Turkey for more... Sample PDF
Nazar Foods Company: Business Process Redesign Under Supply Chain Management Context
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Chapter 21
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
The TeleDoc project of Jivan Institute has combined mobile commerce and the ancient concepts of Ayurveda for treatment of rural residents of India... Sample PDF
The Expansion Plan of TeleDoc: What and How Much of the Technology Employed is to Change?
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Chapter 22
S.C. Lenny Koh, Stuart Maguire
E-government is becoming a reality rather than a theoretical ambition; however, achieving the e-government anticipated benefits is still illusive... Sample PDF
Process-Aware E-Government Services Management: Reconciling Citizen Business, and Technology Dynamics
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