Institute of Commercial Management | Qualification Subject

Managing Computer Systems

Main Topics of Study

Organisational Structures

  • Hierarchical structures in business
  • Matrix structures in business
  • Management by objectives
  • Centralisation of a business. Affects of decentralisation

General Management Principles

  • Management control of a business
  • Planning and scheduling
  • Time management
  • Reporting methods. Reporting to management
  • Communication channels in business
  • Motivation

Information

  • Distinction between data and information
  • Information at different levels – operational, tactical, strategic
  • Presenting information – different methods
  • What makes “good” information?
  • Form and report design

Business Processes

  • Forecasting
  • Budgeting
  • Decision systems. Executive information systems. Decision support systems. Expert systems
  • IT aids for the manager

Network Analyst – PERT

  • Network analysis as a means of project control
  • Definitions of activity, event, critical path, float, dummy activity. Activity resources
  • Conventions for drawing a network diagram
  • Draw a network from a table of activities
  • Determine critical path and minimum project duration
  • Gantt Chart. Draw a Gantt. Aggregating resources within a Gantt chart. Levelling resources over the duration of the project
  • The role of the computer in project control

IT Personnel – The Roles of IT Personnel in the Business – Their Job Descriptions

  • Data processing manager, computer manager
  • Network supervisor/controller
  • Systems analyst
  • Programmer, systems programmer, programmer analyst
  • End users and data clerks

Training and Recruiting

  • Methods of recruiting particularly for IT staff
  • Methods of selection particularly for IT staff
  • Benefits/drawbacks of training existing staff against recruiting new, already-trained staff
  • Training needs. Individual training programs. Personnel development records (PDR)
  • Means of providing the right training

Security and Privacy of Computer Systems

  • Difference between security and privacy
  • Threats to the security of computer systems – hardware, software and data
  • Means of minimising security problems
  • Privacy issues in business data
  • The manager’s role in controlling security and privacy problems

The Effects of Computers on Business

  • Managing changes in business methods
  • Changing role of personnel
  • Changes which affect customers
  • Health issues related to computer use
  • Data protection acts and other laws relating to computer systems which affect management and staff

The Small Business

  • Differences in running a small business compared with larger organisations
  • Benefits of IT for the small business related to a particular business
  • Business plans
  • Choosing the right computer system
  • Problems facing the small business with regards to IT
  • Leasing and maintenance contracts

Example Candidate Response Booklet

Example Candidate Response (ECR) Booklets are a source of crucial information for Centres and Candidates as they use real candidate responses. We ask Senior Examiners to comment on five or more responses in terms of why the mark was awarded with commentary about how to improve the answer (if necessary).

Recommended Reading

Indicative Text:

Alternative Text and Further Reading:

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Management Theory and Practice by G A Cole (DPP) ISBN 1 85805 166 5 (Fifth edition)

Quantitative Techniques by T.Lucey (DPP) ISBN 1 84480106 3 (Sixth Edition)

Management Information Systems by T Lucey (Letts) ISBN 1 855805 303 X (Eighth edition)