Design of information system for the university management

Table of contents: The Kazakh-American Free University Academic Journal №9 - 2017

Author: Chettykbayev Ruslan , Kazakh-American Free University, Kazakhstan

The informatization of society is known to be the most important mechanism of shaping the national economy competitiveness [1]. Due to the realization of the state policy in terms of the informatization of society and education in the Republic of Kazakhstan, the necessity of application of modern information and communication technologies has proceeded to a more developed level, from studying opportunities of information technologies to their implementation and application in the educational process. Regarding this fact, distance learning technologies have been applied increasingly, an efficient methodological framework and mechanisms of distance learning implementation have been designed, and domestic digital resources began to develop as well. Given that, nowadays an urgent issue becomes the process of information systems implementation in terms of higher education management. Education management information system (EMIS) is being developed in Kazakhstan, some of its components have already been put into action; however, the unified information system of education is something prospective. Similar systems are increasingly implemented in many industrial enterprises across the world. Their main purpose is a real time analysis of reliable information about key processes taking place at an enterprise. In spite of all the advantages of management systems application, many enterprises face a great number of problems at the stage of implementing those management systems, which leads to unwillingness to use them. Thus, studying organizational aspects of information technologies implementation in the field of education presents a relevant problem and requires systematic research as well as an appropriate action plan. The methodological framework is represented by the following scientists' research: A. Markin [9], Samuel W. McDowell [17], Y. Rumyantseva [12], V. Slyusar [12], D. Issayev [7], E. Troshin [14], B. Martirosyan [10], V. Latyshev [8], J. Phillips [16], D. Aglitsky [3], V. Bozhko [4].

The goal of the present research is to determine the main criteria of the implementation of enterprise management system, identify the main problems of implementation, and develop recommendations on effective implementation of automated management system in a higher education institution.

To make appropriate managerial decisions on tactical and strategic issues concerning the development of an enterprise (organization), a real time analysis of reliable information about key processes taking place at an enterprise is required. Any operating enterprise may face 2 major problems – 1) the difficulty in receiving the latest and reliable information for analysis and appropriate decision making; 2) the lack of cooperation between organization departments in the framework of unified information environment. Such problems often hinder effective management of an enterprise.

One of the ways to solve the problems mentioned above is to apply corporate information systems, which automate activity of an enterprise. Nowadays the entire globe is experiencing the process of transition from the use of local decisions in terms of automating separate managerial objectives to integrated systems of automating record keeping and management unified information space. Integrated systems of enterprise management, known as ERP-systems (Enterprise Resource Planning), enable to integrate data and processes of all organization departments into unified corporate information system. ERP-systems can be defined as an organizational strategy of integrating production and operations, human resources management, financial management and asset management, which is aimed at continuous balancing and optimization of enterprise resources by means of specialized integrated application package software that provides a general model of data and processes for the scope of activity.

There are many advantages of management system implementation for an enterprise; however, experience has shown that this situation has the following peculiarities: on the one hand, there are plenty of offers to develop and implement information instruction systems; on the other hand, there is no evidence of its successful implementation. Even if plenty of enterprises try to implement integrated management systems, such systems are hardly used in the field of education. At best, educational institutions prefer decision-making and automation of certain aspects of activity on their own, and in fact, they continue to be highly dependent on paperwork.

While analyzing the implementation of given systems at an enterprise, one can point out 3 main problems hindering an effective development of specialized ERP-system market for higher education institutions of the Republic of Kazakhstan:

1. Lack of funds. Not all enterprises can afford to implement specialized management systems as their implementation and maintenance is a labor-intensive and expensive process. The following elements can be referred to as the reasons affecting the price of an automation project: the cost of software license, cost of technical support that accounts for about 20 % of the cost of software and includes payment for error correction service, functional development and provision of newer versions, cost of consulting services which cannot be less that 200% of the cost of software. Approximately, the cost of management system implementation for an average enterprise will be equal 15,000 conventional units – 5,000,000 conventional units, provided a free ERP-system is applied. Based on this, it can be concluded that not every higher education institution will be able to make such a payment because they do not have sufficient funds to maintain and renew their facilities.

However, it should be taken into account that ERPs are modular systems, which contain a great number of various subsystems. System modularity allows for effective implementation of both integrated and partial application at an enterprise. In this case, everything depends on the manager's goals and peculiarities of business processes taking place at that enterprise. This special feature can be used in the process of ERP-systems implementation and thus lower implementation and maintenance costs for Kazakhstani higher education institutions.

2. Shortage of appropriate specialized decisions. This problem is the key one as there are no global IT-decisions for the higher education system in the Republic of Kazakhstan. Unfortunately, ERP-systems market is still being developed in Kazakhstan, and decisions on integrated automation of educational organizations management based on unified information environment are missing at all. If one analyzes the ERP-systems market in the CIS, their shortage can be found as well. If large industrial enterprises have an opportunity to opt for various management systems, for the education system there can be singled out only one full-fledged ERP-system. It is called Galaxy – Higher Education Institutions Management which has demonstrated successful results in such major educational institutions as Yugra State University, Pacific State University, and Far Eastern State University, as well as a number of smaller educational institutions [13].

3. Higher education institution executives lacking necessary competences and interest in the issue under discussion. Plenty of higher education institution executives follow the principle "do not ruin the thing that works" and therefore are reluctant to change the process of paperwork and educational process organization that have been functioning for years. Yet, the state program of informatization focuses on the implementation of information technologies into the educational process. Given that, eventually educational institutions will start integrating ERP-systems into the process of higher education institutions management.

The advantages of ERP-systems implementation for an enterprise are as follows:

- the executives of an organization and its staff obtain a tool allowing for real planning and managing an enterprise;

- the coverage of almost all kinds of activities, all business processes at an enterprise, and all resources management;

- starting with "enterprise needs", i.e. the primary aspect for ERP-systems is the optimization of production processes, enhancement of effectiveness with respect to production activity. The automation of such aspects as accounting is secondary. Along with this, necessary accounting reports can be created in different modules of the system;

- ERP-systems enable to connect with CAD / CAM systems that allows for obtaining an integrated decision that joins design, production, and distribution together;

- ERP-systems are aimed at processing financial information to solve problems related to the management of large corporations with geographically dispersed resources. Here is included everything that is necessary to obtain resources, produce goods, transport them, and estimate clients' orders;

- the basic system of adaptable ERP includes application programs packages to solve managerial problems, means of problems interconnecting into required configurations, means of interfacing with other systems, etc.

An essential condition of these means application is achieving economic effectiveness due to their implementation. It requires estimating economic effectiveness and its substantiation [5].

The substantiation of economic effectiveness in terms of information technologies application enables to:

- determine the necessity and reasonability of expenditures on the development and implementation of the automated information collection and processing system at different levels of information systems;

- identify the main areas of information processing automation based on the peculiarities of different levels of information systems as well as techniques of information acquisition, transfer, and processing;

- choose economically effective variants of technological processes related to economic information processing.

Economic effectiveness of automated information processing is achieved due to the following major factors:

- a high speed of information collection, transfer, processing, and output achieved due to high productivity of modern technical equipment and maximum reduction of time necessary to perform separate operations;

- quality enhancement of performing economic accounting due to the development of the unified infobase, setting an appropriate schedule of its retrieval, removal of constant data and derived indices as well as due to its centralized processing;

- information maintenance improvement of different IS levels due to the reduction of lead time and documents obtaining.

Thus, general effectiveness of information technologies application directly depends on the reduction of information processing costs (so called direct effectiveness) and on raising an information service level (so called indirect effectiveness).

Direct effectiveness is expressed in lowering labor costs and expenditures on economic information processing and directly, i.e. quantitatively, influences economic indices of computing units activity that are involved in its processing. If, before assessment procedures, an enterprise has not been automated at all, it would be enough to compare productivity results before automation Р0 with respective zero expenditure (Z0= 0) to the results after automation Р1 with respective expenditure Z1.

In a simplified way, effectiveness is calculated according to Formula (1):

E = Р10-Z1. (1)

Indirect effectiveness characterizes qualitative changes that occur as a result of computer aids application. They are expressed in quality and accounting performing efficiency enhancement, extension of information structure, and enhancement of its reliability, efficiency, etc. [11].

Nowadays there are no methods to evaluate effectiveness percentage received from information machine processing with respect to general effectiveness, which is the result of various measures taken to improve the information service of different enterprises. In this case, it is recommended to use an expert evaluation technique to calculate expected indirect effectiveness.

Any organization today is a complex open social system, or mechanism, that takes some elements of the environment in which that organization functions. Thus, they undergo some changes creating output elements.

It would be wrong to consider information technologies implementation as a self-sufficient process of changing one of the model elements. Basically, it is part of a more integrated process of changes touching upon all the components of the system under study and affecting an organization as a whole. Making any changes without consideration of this influence can cause unpredictable consequences.

The roots of this problem appear at the stage of setting the objective to implement certain technologies urgently. In this way, inefficient work of a subsystem can be identified and considered as a self-sufficient element, therefore formulating an additional objective to implement an appropriate decision. In this respect, it is evident that an incorrect formulation of the objective leads to unsatisfactory results.

To solve this problem, the flexible systematic methodology called Organizational Development can be applied [16].

For the purpose of ensuring the most effective results of the process related goal setting, decision development and implementation, it is necessary to consider the following steps:

1. Identification of the Company's future state – description of the system future state – "Where would we like to be?"

1.1 Shaping the future company's consistent image and vision.

1.2 Written description of shared vision.

1.3 Mission statement.

1.4 Development of the company's business-model (a new business-system model).

1.4.1 Development of business-processes model – the system of coordinated business-processes, which are necessary for the company's activity in accordance with the stated mission.

1.4.2 Development of the structure and command model for their implementation:

- hierarchy of powers and accountability, distribution of responsibility;

- job specification;

- job description;

- information systems, communication and coordination systems, conference systems.

1.4.3 Development of management and evaluation system:

- mechanisms of managerial decision making;

- planning systems;

- systems of performance efficiency criteria, mechanisms of monitoring, evaluation, and control;

- formal systems of motivation, stimulation, remuneration of labor and reward;

- systems of employees' training and development;

- operational policy, etc.

1.4.4. Development of employees' value and belief system as well as mechanisms of their shaping

2. Diagnostics and analysis of the current state – description of the system status – "Where are we now?"

3. Transition management – goal setting and changes implementation – "What should we do to change the situation?"

The stage of transition management is important for identifying a set of necessary changes and developmental measures depending on the fact where (at what level of analysis) the problem exists and on the degree of necessary interference. Among these factors, it may be necessary to change the systems and structures and consequently to implement new information management technologies.

It is easier to implement a system when it is known what economic effect it will produce. That is why, more and more organization executives, before making a decision on fund allocation to design IT-projects, require IT-department heads and IT-project managers to provide an evidence-based assessment of such investment effectiveness. Thus, the research will further focus on determining major economic effectiveness indices based on modern information technologies implementation.

Therefore,

1. Systemic approach enables to represent an organization as a complex open social system, i.e. the mechanism taking input elements from the external environment and making various changes the result of which are output elements.

2. Organizations represented as systems consist of interrelated constituents: objectives, structures and systems, culture, and people. Changes made in one constituent lead to those made in other constituents. As a result, information technology implementation, being a part of the structure and system element, can be taken into consideration based on its mutual influence on other constituents of the system.

3. The activity analysis and subsequent modeling of business-processes is the second important condition for effective IT-decision implementation.

4. The development and implementation of decision with information technologies application is an iterative process and requires constant correction and update, so the organization should be provided with appropriate resources for this activity: staff (knowledge and skills), tools (techniques and software), information (internal and external environment, consumers, providers, business competitors).

5. The automated management system should be formed gradually by means of successive development and implementation of modules (subsystems) based on the application of common normative-reference information, common databases and data warehouses that will provide one-time data input and consistency of information obtained from different organization departments. 

6. The process of system implementation should be divided into several stages and take 2 – 3 years. The pilot operation of developed subsystems should be combined with the support of operating subsystems, giving up on which will be appropriate after the confirmation of new decisions effectiveness.

7. The basis of the system is the information connected with the cohort of staff and students; therefore, the Personnel Management module should be implemented first.

8. An appropriately designed and implemented system will enable to save material, labor, and time resources, facilitate the work of a number of key employees, as well as provide some extra time for analysis and strategic management, allow for enhancing the educational process quality, customers' and employee's satisfaction.

REFERENCES

1. Strategic Plan of the Ministry of Science and Education of the Republic of Kazakhstan for 2011 – 2015 (Appendix to the Resolution of the Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan as of February 19, 2011, # 160) // http:// www. nci. kz [in Russian]

2. Titorenko G.A. Automated information technologies in economics: textbook [in Russian]. Moscow: UNITY, 2005

3. Aglitsky D.S., Aglitsky I.S. Information technologies market: problems and solutions [in English]. Moscow: Ladomir, 2000.

4. Bozhko V.P., Khoroshilov A.V. Information technologies in statistics [in Russian]. Moscow: Finstatinform, 2002

5. Godin, V. V. Information resources management: the Organization Development Management 17-module program for managers. Module 17 [in Russian] / Godin V.V., Korneyev I.K. Moscow: IN-FRA-M, 2000

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12. Rumyantseva Y.L., Slyusar V.V. Information technologies [in Russian]. – Moscow: Forum, Infra-M, 2007. – 256 pp.

13. Amiridi Y.V., Annenskaya N.Y. Modern IT-decisions for finance industry [in Russian]. Moscow: BDC-press publishing house, 2004

14. Troshin, E. At the joint of CALS and ERP [in Russian] // Technologies of business automation. IT Bell. – 2009. - # 5. – pp. 10 – 15

15. Kurbakov K.I. Educational and methodological problems of science intensive technologies in education [in Russian]. Interuniversity collection of methodological works # 8. Moscow: KOS INF, Rus. Econ. Acad., 2002

16. Phillips J. IT-project management [in Russian]. – Moscow: Lori, 2008.

17. Samuel W., McDowell, Ph.D. Cost justification of investments in information technology (IT). Executive Technology Report. Working Paper #94-04.: McDowell &Company, 1999.



Table of contents: The Kazakh-American Free University Academic Journal №9 - 2017

  
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