Upgrading And Evaluation Information System Information Technology Essay

Information is the lifeblood of any organisation. Information systems, which comprise hardware, package, informations, applications, communicating and people, help an organisation to better manage and unafraid information on its assorted concern operations, better integrating and work procedures every bit good as give meaningful studies on critical concern activities. An information system ‘s chief aim in an administration “ aˆ¦ is to bring forth relevant and choice information ” ( Executive Board, WHO, 2006 ) . This helps to supervise, papers and accurately study on the operations of other systems within the administration.

An indispensable measure in beef uping a wellness information system is to convey informations manufacturers together with informations users – those people implementing undertaking activities every bit good as those responsible for policy-making, direction, planning and funding within the administration. All users need different degrees of item and proficient specificity. A good information system should hence be able to show and circulate informations in formats that are appropriate for all the assorted users and that allow informations to be translated into cognition for action.

Background

African Medical & A ; Research Foundation ( AMREF ) is an international African organisation headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya. AMREF ‘s vision is Better Health for Africa and the mission is to guarantee that every African can bask the right to good wellness by assisting to make vivacious webs of informed communities that work with sceptered wellness attention suppliers in strong wellness systems

AMREF is an independent non-profit, non-governmental organisation ( NGO ) founded in 1957. The foundation has state offices in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, South Africa and Ethiopia, and programme presence in Somalia and the Southern Sudan. The Kenya state programme implements undertaking activities under five programme countries viz. ; HIV/AIDS STIs and TB, Water and Basic Sanitation, Family Health, Malaria Control, Clinical Outreach, Disaster Management and Emergency Response. Training and Development of Health Learning Materials is a major constituent of each of the programme countries. Health Policy and Systems Development/Support is a cross cutting country within AMREF Kenya operations.

Knowledge is a core merchandise of AMREF ‘s activities. It implements undertakings to larn and portion this evidence-based cognition with others to recommend for alterations in wellness policy and pattern. Based on the belief that wellness is a basic human right, the administration seeks to authorise communities to take control of their wellness and to set up a vibrant and participatory wellness attention system made up of communities, wellness workers and authoritiess.

AMREF ‘s scheme seeks to beef up wellness systems and to plan and heighten intercessions that improve people ‘s entree to wellness through their active engagement. Informed by Africa ‘s wellness crisis, the administration ‘s comparative advantage and five decennaries ‘ experience of working with communities and wellness systems in the part, the its scheme is pursued through three mutualist programme subjects viz. : Community Partnering for Better Health, Health Systems and Policy Research, and Capacity Building.

Problem Statement

Over clip, AMREF has made attempts to set in topographic point a functional information system aimed at standardising information aggregation, processing, storage and coverage on undertaking activities and consequences. Notably, in 2000, a quarterly planning and coverage ( QPR ) database system was developed and installed in AMREF Kenya Country Offices and operational undertakings, and in 2007, the AMREF Kenya Country Office Projects Database ( KPD ) was commissioned. Although these attempts went a long manner in run intoing their authorizations, a reappraisal revealed failings in the countries of system constellation, handiness, and linkages between assorted signifiers that adversely hampered the intended functionalities for the QPR and inability to bring forth comprehensive studies for the KPD. Though good designed, the QPR and the KPD were found non to be various and user friendly plenty and had challenges run intoing the administration ‘s information direction demands.

Undertaking Goals and Aims

Undertaking Goal

To heighten informations direction for determination devising

Aim

To heighten informations gaining control and coverage of AMREF Kenya Country Office ( KCO ) undertakings activities and consequences

Specific aims

Establish control structures in informations entry to better truth and completeness

To better serviceability through redesigning of the bing M & A ; E information system

To develop appropriate user ushers for the upgraded system

To heighten user accomplishments in using the system through preparation

To better entree to freshly generated cognition

Proposed solution

The proposed undertaking solution entails upgrading and implementing a user friendly and procure web based M & A ; E Information System that will run into the informations direction and describing demands of undertakings and units in AMREF KCO.

Expected Benefits

Lower transactional costs due to increased operational efficiency

Improved user friendliness and easiness of entree taking to increased system usage – Everybody has a browser which presents a familiar interface – encourages use.

Centralized information is unafraid and easy to backup

Updates can be made rapidly and easy with minimal incommodiousness to the users or consumers

Minimized software/hardware demands – no installing or particular constellations needed at user terminal and any computing machine with internet handiness can be used without particular installings.

Information is accessible to a broad mark audience regardless of geographical location or distances at the lowest possible cost

Literature Review

Introduction

An information system is any combination of information engineering and people ‘s activities utilizing that engineering to back up operations, direction, and decision-making. Harmonizing to ( Kroenke, 2008 ) , in a really wide sense, the term information system is often used to mention to the interaction between people, algorithmic procedures, informations and engineering. In this sense, the term is used to mention non merely to the information and communicating engineering ( ICT ) an organisation uses, but besides to the manner in which people interact with this engineering in support of concern procedures.

Information systems can be delivered over assorted engineerings as their primary platform. Traditionally, information systems were desktop and waiter based. A desktop based information systems “ is a self-contained plan that is able to execute a specific set of undertakings and maps under a user ‘s supervising and control. They do non necessitate a web or any signifier of other connectivity in order to run or map but they might do usage of resources of a web that may be attached to it ” ( Thomson, 2011 ) . A waiter based information systems on the other manus contains mechanisms to guarantee the dependability and consistence of informations and are geared toward multi-user applications. Server based information systems are based on waiter based calculating which “ is a engineering whereby applications are deployed, managed, supported and executed on the waiter and non on the client. Alternatively merely the screen information is transmitted between the waiter and client. ” ( 2X Software Ltd ( Europe ) HQ, 2010 ) .

The World Wide Web ( WWW ) .

The of all time germinating package industry heralded the entry of the WWW as an alternate platform on which information systems can be delivered via Intranet or via the Internet. Harmonizing to ( Paynter & A ; Pearson, 2007 ) , the WWW is a technologically active environment, and information systems developed for the WWW differ in important countries from traditional applications. The WWW incorporates the thought of a boundless information universe in which all the points have a mention by which they can be retrieved from anyplace in the universe. The WWW has evolved over clip through assorted evolutionary stages. ( Taivalsaari, 2009 ) asserts that ab initio, web pages were simple textual paperss with limited user interaction capablenesss based on hyperlinks. Soon, artworks support and form-based informations entry were added. Gradually, with the debut of DHTML – the combination of HTML, Cascading Style Sheets ( CSS ) , the JavaScripta„? scripting linguistic communication, and the Document Object Model ( DOM ) – it became possible to make progressively synergistic web pages with constitutional support for advanced artworks and life. This has seen the web pages grow from simple page structured paperss to with inactive images without lifes to animated pages with legion circuit boards and finally to pages with desktop-style web applications ( rich cyberspace applications ) as illistrated in Figure 1.

1. Simple pages with text and inactive images merely ( Beginning: hypertext transfer protocol: //mail.uonbi.ac.ke )

2. Animated pages with circuit boards ( Beginning: www.amref.org )

3. Rich cyberspace applications ( Beginning: hypertext transfer protocol: //docs.google.com )

Figure: Development of web use

Web Based Information System

A web application is an application that is accessed over a web such as the cyberspace or an intranet. Developing web based information system solutions entails coming up with an application “ designed to execute a specific map straight for the user of for another application plan over the web ” ( Bar-Gad & A ; Klein, 2002 ) . Web applications are popular due to the ubiquitousness of web browsers, and the convenience of utilizing a web browser as a client. The ability to update and keep web applications without administering and put ining package on potentially 1000s of client computing machines is a cardinal ground for their popularity, as is the built-in support for cross-platform compatibility. Harmonizing to ( Taivalsaari, 2009 ) , web applications require no installing or manual ascents, and they can be deployed immediately worldwide. This instant worldwide deployment facet is improbably powerful, and dramatically changes the manner people develop and use package, leting world-wide application development and instant deployment without jobbers or distributers.

Applications deployed on the web implement a 3 grade architecture comprising of a database grade at the underside, the application grade in the center and the client grade on top as illustrated in Figure 2.

Beginning: ( Kumar & A ; Singh, 2010 )

Figure: 3-tier architecture

By interrupting up an application into tier-levels, it becomes easy to modify or add a specific bed, instead than hold to rewrite the full application over. The 3 grade architecture comprises of the presentation grade, a concern or informations entree grade, and a information grade.

Presentation grade, besides called the client grade is the uppermost degree of the application. It displays information and communicates with other grades by outputting consequences to the browser and all other grades in the web. The presentation grade converts and shows application informations into a human-legible signifier and provides an application ‘s user controls. It is the grade in which the user or client interfaces with the system ( Kumar & A ; Singh, 2010 ) .

Business logic or informations entree grade is pulled out from the presentation grade and, as its ain bed, it controls an application ‘s functionality by executing elaborate processing.

Data grade consists of database waiters. Here information is stored and retrieved. This tier keeps informations impersonal and independent from application waiters or concern logic. Giving data its ain grade improves scalability and public presentation.

Decision

Harmonizing to ( Mackay, 2006 ) , an information system must bring forth supervising information and rating findings that are judged valuable by cardinal stakeholders, that are used to better organisational public presentation, and that respond to a sufficient demand for the M & A ; E map. Using web based databases enables an administration to tap into the monolithic power of web engineering which comes with many benefits of traditional desktop based information systems.

Methodology

Harmonizing to the ( Centers for Medicare & A ; Medicaid Services, 2008 ) , a system development methodological analysis refers to the model that is used to construction, program, and command the procedure of developing an information system. Different types of system development methodological analysiss are used in planing information systems depending upon the existent demand of the system. In System Development Life Cycle ( SDLC ) , a assortment of methodological analysiss are available such as Waterfall theoretical account, Prototyping, Rapid Application Development ( RAD ) , Joint Application Development ( JAD ) , Agile methodological analysiss among others.

The development of the system shall follow the traditional life rhythm ( the H2O autumn theoretical account ) . This is a “ phased attack to constructing a system spliting systems development into formal phases ” ( Laudon & A ; Laudon, 2010 ) . Harmonizing to ( Bender RBT Inc. , 2003 ) , a waterfall system has three primary aims ;

Ensure high quality systems are delivered,

Supply strong direction controls, and

Maximize the productiveness of the systems staff

The Waterfall System Development Model

“ The waterfall theoretical account is a consecutive package development procedure, in which advancement is seen as fluxing steadily downwards ( like a waterfall ) through the stages of construct, induction, analysis, design ( proof ) , building or development, proving and care. ” ( Ragunath, Velmourougan, Davachelvan, & A ; Kayalvizhi, 2010 ) . The relationship of each phase to the others can be approximately described as a waterfall, where the end products from a specific phase service as the initial inputs for the undermentioned phase. During each phase, extra information is gathered or developed, combined with the inputs, and used to bring forth the phase deliverables.

Figure: The Waterfall System Development ModelSystem Investigation

System Analysis

System Design

System Coding/Construction

System Care

Beginning: Kuchta, J. , Software Life Cycle, BioInforBank Library

The pick of this theoretical account was made based on its assorted advantages which include ;

It is a additive theoretical account doing it easy to be implemented.

The sum of resources required to implement this theoretical account is really minimum.

Documentation is produced at every phase of the waterfall theoretical account development. This makes the apprehension of the merchandise planing procedure simpler.

After every major phase of package cryptography, proving is done to look into the right running of the codification.

To this terminal hence, the activities in the development life rhythm shall be carried out as follows ;

System probe,

This procedure is besides known as feasibleness survey. In system probe, possible jobs and chances will be identified and considered in visible radiation of the ends of the administration. System probe “ involves analyzing the bing system and work procedures to place strengths, failings and chances for betterment ” ( Stair & A ; Reynolds, 2010 ) . This stage will hence be used to find the chance of success of the proposed system through ;

Technical feasibleness – will be used to find if and how the proficient capableness is available to finish the system

Economic feasibleness – will find the existent cost of the system every bit good as its benefit to the administration. A elaborate budget will be drawn bespeaking the cost of all the inputs needed to implement the system.

Behavioral feasibility- will be used to find if the system will be accepted and used within the administration

The consequence of this stage is “ a defined development undertaking for which concern jobs or chance statements have been created ” ( Stair & A ; Reynolds, 2010 ) . In this stage hence, it will be of import to find the demand and to specify the job that needs to be solved.

System analysis,

The primary aim of system analysis stage is to understand the users ‘ demands and develop demands for system development.This stage will affect garnering information from the users, specifying package demand, prioritizing demands, and reexamining recommendations with direction. The procedure will let an apprehension of the exisitng system, its operation, its context within the administration, every bit good as its strengths and failings.

An appraisal aiming system users shall hence be carried out to set up AMREF KCO information direction needs including informations gaining control, processing, storage, describing and information sharing demands as it relates to programme direction. Data will be collected to set up AMREF KCO information needs chiefly through cardinal informant and concentrate group interviews affecting a cross subdivision of the users of the proposed system.

System design,

The chief consequence of this stage is ” a proficient design that inside informations end product is a proficient design that inside informations system end products, inputs and user interfaces, specifies hardware, package, databases, forces and processs and shows how these constituents are related ” ( Stair & A ; Reynolds, 2010 ) . ( Wang, Saemann, & A ; Du, 2007 ) identifies two system design as consisting two stages ;

Logical design – involves a elaborate bill of exchange of tabular arraies, signifiers, interfaces, and duologues which will finally be used in the execution stage, and

Physical design – the specific construction of tabular arraies and the interrelatednesss bwtween tabular arraies are set Forth.

Following this definition hence, the constituents of the finished solution are as outlined in Attachment III.

Coding

This is the codification coevals measure which will be responsible for translatingthe design into a machine-readable signifier. Coding creates informations tabular arraies, establishes links between tabular arraies based on defined informations relationships, and user interfaces.

Once the design is complete, most of the major determinations about the system will hold been made. A good written codification reduces the testing and care attempt. The end of this coding stage will be to interpret the consequences of the system design stage into codification in a given scheduling linguistic communication. In this instance, Microsoft Visual Studio will be used for building and revising the database and the user interfaces for this undertaking. Other Third Party packages, e.g. , Java, MySQL, etc shall be used to complement Ms Visual Studio where necessay.This stage will therefore endevour to implement the design in the best possible mode. This will be achieved by developing plans that are easy to compose so as to the testing and care attempt.

Testing

System is the procedure used to mensurate the quality of developed information system.It is designed to do certain that computing machine codification does what it was designed to make and that it does non make anything unintended. This stage assumes that the system contains mistakes and hence it aims to to place as many mistakes as possible so they can be eliminated. Testing besides seeks to guarantee that all interacting units and subsystems in a system are interfacing right with one another to bring forth the coveted consequences.

Testing shall invole two stairss ;

Unit of measurement proving – Unit of measurement proving shall be used to guarantee that the smallest testable parts of the system ( called units ) , are separately and independently scrutinized for proper operation. Unit of measurement proving shall be integrated throughout the full undertaking rhythm so that each work merchandise is tested as it is created.

System Testing – System proving shall be performed one time unit testing has been completed for all units contained in the subsystems being tested and shall cover cover the testing of interface points between units and subsystems.

System execution,

System execution refers to post-coding procedure of steering a client to utilize the system. The execution stage shall include hardware and package installing, users preparation, and certification. The primary aims of this stage shall be to guarantee that ;

The system is installed and made available so that users can entree it

The users are good trained. A suited preparation bundle shall be designed aiming assorted user degrees within the administration. The chief manner of bringing shall be through workshops and onsite preparation.

To guarantee that the administration benefits from the system

System care and reappraisal

System care shall include activities like maintaining the system up to day of the month with the alterations in the organisation and guaranting it meets the ends of the organisation by:

Constructing a aid desk to back up the system users.

Implementing alterations to the system when necessary.

This stage shall involves monitoring, measuring and modifying the system to do desirable or necessary betterments to guarantee that the system is kept working at an acceptable degree. This shall be an on-going procedure and while the initial portion of the stage shall be undertaken as portion of this undertaking, subsequent care and support activities shall be carried out by the administration after undertaking manus over.

The Project Management and Implementation Team

In order to be antiphonal to the system needs of the administration, there shall be a undertaking direction and execution squad comprising of the technicl squad, the chap and the adviser coder. The proficient squad shall consist of persons stand foring assorted stakeholder demands within AMREF in Kenya. Specifically, this shall include the M & A ; E Manager ( chair ) , the ICT Manager, the Mentor to the chap ( M & A ; E Expert ) , three staff from selected undertakings within the administration and any other individuals who shall be co-opted into the squad from clip to clip as the demand arises. This squad shall work with the chap to supply support and associate the undertaking with the administration and the direction of other undertakings within the administration every bit good as the targeted system users who make up the system consumers and users severally. On the proficient side, the fellow shall work with a coder to develop the system. The function of each group in the squad shall be clearly defined and stated ( Attachment I ) .

Decision

The stages outlined in this execution procedure shall be executed within a defined work program ( Attachment II ) that spells the order of activities every bit good as foregrounding what activities shall be done within what times frames.

Budget