Book Contents

Ch. 12
Evaluating Decision Support Systems Projects

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Scoring Approach

Parker, Trainor and Benson (1989) describe a method for evaluating Information Systems projects that they called information economics and that can be considered more generally as a decision analysis scoring approach or model. A multi-factor evaluator program is available at This evaluation method separates the business and technical justification. It considers intangible benefits and other considerations that are not considered credible by analysts who only focus on financial criteria. This approach uses the firm's business and Information Systems strategic plans as part of an Information Systems project evaluation. The process involves weighting factors to reflect how well the project satisfies a given factor. Points are assigned to each impact criterion. The scores are summarized; projects are ranked.

The steps are to select a rating system to make numerical comparisons. Have multiple raters evaluate each alternative on benefit and cost factors. Weight the benefit and cost factors in terms of importance. Finally, calculate a weighted score for each alternative.

Business Justification of economic impact involves assessing strategic alignment, competitive advantage, management information support, competitive response to the project, and strategic or organizational risk. Technical viability involves examining the strategic systems architecture, technical uncertainty, and system infrastructure risk.



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