Topic 4 - AQA INFO3 ICT

ICT strategy

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Factors that influence an ICT strategy within an o

  • Business goals - the setting of objective and goals. The aims must be specific, measurable, relevant and have a timescale. The advantages to this is that a target is set so the actions in the organisation can be focused, personnel are given a sense of direction, can be used as a motivational tool and can be used to evaluate the success of a project. 
  • Legacy systems - the new system should be capable of communication with the old in terms of software capability, portability of data and transferability.
  • Available finance - most large organisations have a specialist finance department that raises capitals to fund expansion. Smaller business can seek advice for this. 
  • Characteristics of clients - the geographical location of customers. This most appropriate method should be based on the following: location of existing and potential customers, cost-effectiveness, quality of communication and customer feedback.
  • Business fulfilment - the fulfilment of business goals. 
  • Compliance with external organisations - such as suppliers, investors and shareholders. Compliance with relevant legislation - Data protection act, freedom of info act, health and safety. 
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Management of information assets over time

  • An information asset can be defined as quantity of information that can be stored using a variety of methods. They have the following characteristics: they are valuable to the organisation and are hard to replace. 
  • Information management is vital since the long-term use of ICT systems involves the need to manage an increasing volume of data. 
  • Organisations should also make sure that appropriate information security measures are in place to protect sensitive information and minimise the risk to it. The following aspects would need to be considered: the volume of data to be stored, how long it needs to be stored for, location, security and assignment of responsibility. 
  • Information assets needs to be registered by public bodies in the UK.
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Corporate strategy covering technology for ICT sys

  • A corporate strategy covering technology for ICT systems would need to consider the following:
  • Future proofing - future proofing of electronic data is centred on the selection of physical storage media and the data formats most likely to be supported through time. The best way to ensure this is to use well-documented formats and standards. Hardware proofing involves purchasing high spec hardware. 
  • Procurement - will normally cover the areas of hardware, software and communication technology. The following will be addressed: performance, robust, support, compatibility and functionality. 
  • Technology life cycle - bleeding edge, leading edge, state of the art, dated, obsolete. 
  • Information management & people considerations - any decisions made regarding ICT should be justified against general strategic goals of the organisation. Support and training should be considered for employees. 
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Standards exist that may affect strategic choices

  • Compatibility - can run the dame programs.
  • Interoperability - enables different systems to work together and exchange data and this is achieved by using common standards. 
  • De jure - the hardware or software is endorsed by a standards organisation.
  • De facto - standards exist where they have been adopted by a large sector of the ICT industry. 
  • The use of standards at strategic decisions avoids "lock in" with a particular supplier. 
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