Management and technology are merging more and more every day, coming together in a quick, exponential way. It's becoming evident that technology is the thing that's driving this change.
As a result, technology skills are a must for any manager. In order to be a good and effective manager, you have to understand the technology of the systems around you. In addition, there are going to be new technology skills continually put in place to help you understand what's going on, and, in effect, be a better manager.
Management information systems comprise an electronic systematic evaluation of an organization in such a manner as to help managers perform their duties. These management information systems, or MIS, are computer systems that are used in management, designed to benefit all the managers within an organization.
These computer systems are used not only in management but also in the processes and procedures that surround the system itself. They provide information on items such as reports, schedules, budgets, and plans, to name a few.
EXAMPLEMore specifically, if you have a computerized scheduling system where the employee can go in and update his or her availability for a particular week, then you, as a manager, are able to make a schedule that is more beneficial to the employees, and more effective for you.
Human resource management is also helped by MIS, because it gives the human resources team easy access to information, or data, from a lot of different departments that relate to human resource management.
Now, businesses use a variety of different management information systems, depending on that organization's goals and needs.
EXAMPLEConsider an enterprise resource system, which looks at the resources that you have throughout the company and tracks them in real-time. This means that the information you're getting is much quicker and you're able to make more timely and informed decisions about different resources within the company.
As you can see, these management information systems can be very useful to collect and analyze data based on what the company is doing. It's worth noting that businesses in similar industries may have similar MIS's because they're tracking the same things--and what they're tracking can support that decision-making process that managers go through. They can also help with information sharing throughout the organization.
Although there are benefits that managers have when using technology in the workplace, there are also risks that managers can face.
|Misuse of data||With any computer system, you have to worry about the misuse of data--knowing where the data comes from and where it can be fairly applied. It doesn't do a manager any good to process information on how much is being spent to build a particular widget if what they are actually looking for is employee morale. It's important to use the correct data for the correct problem.|
|Protecting data||Managers also need to be aware of protecting data and cognizant of risks to data such as hackers, identity theft, and phishing, for example.|
|Updating systems||It's important to continually update the systems and the data that's contained within those systems. It's also critical to keep old data while changing or updating your hardware; otherwise, you run the risk of losing important data along the way as you make these upgrades.|
|Technology usage||Managers need to monitor technology usage, constantly keeping up with new technology and training employees to use them. They also need to keep up with what other businesses are using, and more importantly, what their customers expect and are using in a way that makes sense.|
Note, it doesn't really matter whether you have a big company or a small company--the challenges are going to be the same. They simply get tackled a little bit differently.
Source: adapted from sophia instructor james howard