System analysis and design is the process of planning, analyze, design and implement the information systems for the business needs. "Systems analysis is a process of collecting factual data, understand the processes involved, identifying problems and recommending feasible suggestions for improving the system functioning." (Open Schooling (2010.P 5). On the other hand, system design is the process of converting the business requirements into physical system design. To design a system designer makes use of the designing tools such as the flow chart, Data flow diagram (DFD), data dictionary and structured English to build the functional information systems. The Broadway Entertainment Company (BEC) case study is a prototype of the system development life cycle where the group gathers relevant data to analyze and design the information systems. Although, the BEC case does not reflect the overall system development life cycle, nevertheless, the case study provides learning experience for the development of the skills in the system analysis and design.
Individual Leaning Experience about System Analysis and Design
There are several individual learning experiences from the overall method of System Analysis and Design. One of the individual learning experiences is that the individual is able to understand the system analysis and design is the part of the system development life cycle (SDLC) which involves process of planning, analyze, design and implement the functional information systems. Typically, the students are able to learn that to become a system analyst, a person needs to collect relevant data from the user. The data collection is to analyze the objectives of the system and its proposed benefits. This stage is very important to identify the problems involved in the development of the information systems and the method to overcome the problems.
Moreover, the students are able to learn that designing a system involves different stages. First, there is a need to design a context diagram. Follow by the design of the level O DFD, and level 1 diagrams. The purpose of the Data Flow Diagram is to provide the blue print of the components and inter-relationships of the system design.
Brief analysis of the case study
The BEC case study enhances the learning experience of the students because the students are able to understand that the context diagram is the first step in designing a system. Typically, the context diagram has satisfied partially the requirements of the users. The context diagram has shown the method the customers interact with the system in order to request for the movies. To send the request status to the customer, the system needs to interact with the entertainment tracker to assess whether the customer could rent a movie based on the rental agreement. Overview of the context diagram reveals that the context diagram is not elaborate enough; there is a need to add the role of store manager in the context diagram. (Broadway Entertainment Company Inc.).
Moreover, the case study does not reveal the level 0 diagram and level 1 diagram. Although, the team member proposed the method to design the level 0 and level 1 diagrams, however, it is revealed that the automated methods for the design of level O and level 1 diagram is very important in order remove the syntax errors. The reflection from the BEC case study reveals that a good team is very critical to design the effective functional information systems.
Attributes of an effective team and characteristics of a valuable team member
Experience from the learning has revealed that effective team members can contribute to the success of a project. For a project to achieve its goals, the team members ought to have certain attributes and characteristics. Some of the attributes and characteristics of valuable team member are as follows:
Result driven: A team member should be result driven. The team member should work diligently together and be able to have the team objectives in mind, which should override the personal objective.
Integrity: Team member should have the integrity, which is to uphold the high personal standard, and do the best for the team.
Willingness: Another attribute of the team member is the willingness to go above of what is expected of the team member. A team member needs to understand that he or she serves as a role model for the team. Thus, the team member should be able to inspire confidence among one another.
Think Creatively: The team member should be able to think creatively to develop a workable project.
Open Communication: Communication is very important attributes of a team. Each of the team members should possess the communication skills which other member of the team will able to understand. (Espindola, 2009). The next section reveals the lessons the students learned from the case study.
Lessons the students learned from the case study
The lessons the students learn from the case study is that forming a team is critical to solve a problem. The case study provides an opportunity for the students to learn several issues about how the team member collaborates to solve a problem. The case study has shown that each of the team members has contributed his or her quotas in building the context diagram. Although, the context diagram designed by the team is not totally complete, however the team member are able to show that they need further improvement in order to build a functional information systems. Students are able learn from the method the team member collaborated to arrive at an appropriate name for the system which they named MyBroadway. To arrive at a decision, the team member study documentation of the Entertainment tracker and from the document, the team member are able to understand the necessary steps to determine what data should be in the inventory data flow. The team member are able to understand that designing a perfect level 0 and level 1 diagrams is cumbersome and time consuming and using automated method for design will eliminate the syntax errors.
The method the team member used to arrive at a decision is impressive; however, the team member would have implemented different methodology to produce a different outcome. The method the team member employ in the case is partially system development life cycle methodology. The team member would have employed an Interactive System Design Methods, which reveal the method users interact with the system.
In designing the functional information systems, there are roles students could play.
Roles Student sees himself/herself playing in an actual project
In a project such as the BEC project, the best role that the students could play conveniently is the system analyst. The students could play the role of system analysts in the case study because they could analyze the business situation and identify opportunities for the improvement. The students also could see themselves analyzing the design method of the system. As the role model of the system analysts, the students intend to create a wonderful system by devising a method on how the information system would create values for the organization. Typically, they identify that to design a wonderful system that would serve an organizational goals, there is a need to use the automated tools to eliminate the semantic and syntax errors. Reviewing the role of the students in the case study reveal that the students still need to develop more skills to develop or improve upon future work on the Systems Analysis and Design projects.
Skills students need to improve upon future work on Systems Analysis and Design projects
One of the skills students need to improve upon for the future work on Systems Analysis and Design is to develop the analytical skills. The analytical skills will assist the students to critically analyze the requirements of a project and suggest the clues for improvement. Analytical mind is very essential to become a good system analyst. The skills will assist the…