Information and its Charcteristics

What do you understand by Information? What are the characteristics of Information?

Data : Data is raw facts. Data is like raw material. Data does not interrelate and also it does not help in decision making. Data is defined as groups of non-random symbols in the form of text, images, voice representing quantities, action and objects.
Information : Information is the product of data processing. Information is interrelated data. Information is equivalent to finished goods produced after processing the raw material. The information has a value in decision making. Information brings clarity and creates an intelligent human response in the mind.
According to Davis and Olson : ―Information is a data that has been processed into a form that is meaningful to recipient and is of real or perceived value in the current or the prospective action or decision of recipient.

It is a most critical resource of the organization. Managing the information means managing future. Information is knowledge that one derives from facts placed in the right context with the purpose of reducing uncertainty.
Characteristics of Information :
The parameters of a good quality are difficult to determine for information.
Quality of information refers to its fitness for use, or its reliability.

Following are the essential characteristic features :

i) Timeliness : Timeliness means that information must reach the recipients within the prescribed timeframes. For effective decision-making, information must reach the decision-maker at the right time, i.e. recipients must get information when they need it. Delays destroys the value of information. The characteristic of timeliness, to be effective, should also include up-to-date, i.e. current information.
ii) Accuracy : Information should be accurate. It means that information should be free from mistakes, errors &, clear. Accuracy also means that the information is free from bias. Wrong information given to management would result in wrong decisions. As managers decisions are based on the information supplied in MIS reports, all managers need accurate information.
iii) Relevance : Information is said to be relevant if it answers especially for the recipient what, why, where, when, who and why? In other words, the MIS should serve reports to managers which is useful and the information helps them to make decisions..
iv) Adequacy : Adequacy means information must be sufficient in quantity, i.e. MIS must provide reports containing information which is required in the deciding processes of decision-making. The report should not give inadequate or for that matter, more than adequate information, which may create a difficult situation for the decision-maker. Whereas inadequacy of information leads to crises, information overload results in chaos.
v) Completeness : The information which is given to a manager must be complete and should meet all his needs. Incomplete information may result in wrong decisions and thus may prove costly to the organization.
vi) Explicitness : A report is said to be of good quality if it does not require further analysis by the recipients for decision making.
vii) Impartiality : Impartial information contains no bias and has been collected without any distorted view of the situation.


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Important Topics

System and its types
Types of System
Types of Information System
Information and its Charcteristics
Level of Business Activity
Information System
Value of Information
Data processing vs Information Processing
Data Collection Methods
Types of Information System
Sub System of MIS
Management Information System
Computerized MIS
Organizational Need for MIS
Factors Responsible for Development of MIS
Effective MIS
Decision Making
Decision Support System
Hebert Simon Model
MIS Planning
Development of MIS
Approaches in Development of MIS
System Analysis
System Analysis and design
Feasibility and Cost- Benefit Analysis
Steps in System Implementation
Evaluation of MIS
Pitfalls in MIS Development
System Documentation
MIS for Finance Marketing Production HRM
Objective Questions
Assignment Questions
Objective Questions with answers