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Systems Life Cycle. The main disadvantage of the traditional waterfall method is with the sequence of stages, in that often the system cannot be tested or run until it is fully complete.

Extracts from this document...




1. Traditional Systems Life Cycle

1.1 Introduction

1.2 Shortcomings

1.3 Stages

1.3.1 Initiation

1.3.2 Feasibility

1.3.3 Investigation and Analysis

1.3.4 Design

1.3.5 Implementation

1.3.6 Testing

1.3.7 Maintenance


2.1 Introduction

2.2 Advantages / Disadvantages

2.3 Suitability

2.4 Stages

2.4.1 The Feasibility Study

2.4.2 Investigation of Current System

2.4.3 Business Systems Options (BSOs)

2.4.4 Requirements Specification

2.4.5 Technical System Options (TSOs)

2.4.6 Logical Design

2.4.7 Physical Design

2.5 Tools and Techniques

2.5.1 Data Flow Diagrams (DFD)

2.5.2 Entity Relation Diagrams


3.1 Introduction

3.2 Advantages / Disadvantages

3.3 Suitability

3.4 Stages

3.4.1 Functional Model Iteration

3.4.2 Design and Build Iteration

3.4.3 Implementation

3.5 Tools and Techniques

3.5.1 CASE Tools

3.5.2 Facilitated Workshops

4. Fact-finding

4.1 Document analysis

4.2 Observation

4.3 Questionnaire

4.4 Interviews

4.5 Data Recording Techniques

5. Existing System

5.1 Interview Transcript – Restaurant Manager

5.2 DFDs

5.2.1 Context Diagram

5.2.2 Level 1 Diagram

5.3 ERD

6. Design Specification

6.1 The problems associated with the current system

6.2 New system requirements

6.3 Business system Options

6.3.1 Personal Digital Assistants (PDA)

6.3.2 Microsoft Access Database

6.3.3 Excel

6.3.4 Selected Option

6.4 Technical System Option

6.5 Diagrams

6.5.1 Context Diagram

6.5.2 Level 1 Data Flow Diagram & Explanation

6.5.3 Entity Relationship Diagram with Explanation

6.6 Data dictionary

6.7 Input/output formats

6.7.1 Customer-Order - Input

6.7.2 Menu-Ingredients - Input

6.7.3 Business-Order - Input

6.7.5 Menu - Output

6.7.6 Purchase Order - Output

6.8 Structured English

6.9 Flowchart

7. Evaluation

7.1 Strengths of the System

7.2 Weaknesses of the System

7.3 Potential Improvements

7.4 Personal Performance

8. Bibliography

8.1 Books

8.2 Websites

8.3 Software

1. Traditional Systems Life Cycle

1.1 Introduction

A Systems Life Cycle describes the process in which a Business Information System is fully developed. It attempts to create a structured framework in order to establish more control of this process.

The traditional approach is a waterfall method meaning a sequence of stages in which the output of each stage becomes the input for the next. A traditional systems life cycle has a number of different stages. The following diagram shows these:-


1.2 Shortcomings

The main disadvantage of the traditional waterfall method is with the sequence of stages, in that often the system cannot be tested or run until it is fully complete.

...read more.


3.5.1 CASE Tools

CASE tools enable automation of much of a system’s development and can better adjust to changes in user requirements. Importantly, by enabling the modelling of systems using standardised notations and techniques, a CASE tool can often produce prototype code to help programmers.

3.5.2 Facilitated Workshops

Workshops are the process of interaction with a group of members from the organisation. Rather than picking the senior staff members off one by one, a process of consultation and direct relationships in workshops enable better interaction and teamwork. This can pave the way for fewer contradictions during the system development process.

4. Fact-finding

4.1 Document analysis

Documentary evidence is vital to the systems analyst in order that he/she can start designing a realistic solution. The study of the documents listed below is helpful as an insight into how the organisation works. However, other fact-finding methods are essential to complete the picture.

  • Company policy
  • Business plan
  • Organisation chart
  • Sales and Accounts records / reports
  • Invoices
  • Complaint forms
  • Previous System Analysis reports (if applicable)

One of the major drawbacks from this method is it’s more possible to carry on something that was not working into the new system.

4.2 Observation

Direct contact with the staff and observation of them using the current system brings about a better understanding of the true needs of the organization. For example, one may spot mistakes which are frequently being repeated by a number of staff. When this is found, we can build a means of avoiding it in the system.

(http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?artid=1839513 Accessed 12th Mar 09)

4.3 Questionnaire

A questionnaire must have questions which are clear and concise. It is most suitable when only a small amount of information needs to be obtained from the masses. An advantage over other methods is that the responses are often confined to objectives we have set.

...read more.


I initially found the use of flow charts particularly difficult in SSADM because of the use of shapes that I had not become accustomed to. However through the help of a website and a book from the college library, I was able to come overcome this. Even though SSADM was designed to be a single-structured approach there are in fact different takes, views and versions of SSADM. This made my research long and cumbersome and as I result I found it really difficult to finish the assignment on time.

I am disappointed that I did not have time to focus more on the security features of the system. Built in functions of Access can provide password protection before being able to enter the system an VBA code could be used to turn off all modification for certain user groups.  

8. Bibliography

8.1 Books

  • Yeates, D. & Wakefield, T. Systems Analysis and Design (2004) Second Edition
  • Long, L. & N. Computers: Information Technology in Perspective (2005) Twelfth Edition, Pearson Education
  • The DSDM Consortium, DSDM: Business Focused Development (2003) Second Edition, Pearson Education
  • Bowman, K. Systems Analysis: A Beginner's Guide (2004) Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillian
  • Weaver, P., Lambrou, N. & Walkley, M. Practical SSADM 4+: A Complete Tutorial Guide (1998) Second Edition, London: Pitman Publishing

8.2 Websites

  • http://www.getahead-direct.com/gwbadfd.htm [Accessed 09 January 2009]
  • http://www.dsdm.org/atern/techniques/facilitated-workshops/[Accessed 15  February 2009]
  • http://www.codeproject.com/KB/architecture/dsdm.aspx [Accessed 16 December 2008]
  • http://www.comp.glam.ac.uk/pages/staff/tdhutchings/chapter4.html[Accessed 05  January 2009]
  • http://www.grin.com/e-book/106034/the-use-of-ssadm-structured-systems-analysis-and-design-methodology-as[Accessed 03  February 2009]
  • http://www.ehow.com/facts_4827300_advantages-disadvantages-microsoft-access.html[Accessed 20 March 2009]
  • http://www.ehow.com/facts_4842302_difference-between-microsoft-access-excel.html[Accessed 20 March 2009]
  • http://www.oracle.com/technology/pub/articles/gagne_access.html[Accessed 20 February 2009]

8.3 Software

  • Microsoft® Student 2008 [DVD]. Redmond, WA: Microsoft Corporation, 2007

Page  of

[1] Analysis and Design of Information Systems p. 51

[2]http://www.smartdraw.com/tutorials/software/ssadm/tutorial_03.htm [Accessed 20th Jan 2008]

...read more.

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