TOMAS - USER FRIENDLINESS
User frindliness, is an important characteristic
of a management information system. Allthough the term "user friendlines"
is frequently in use, it is not quite clear what it reprisents. Therefore,
we first define what it is and than, in what way it has been achieved in
WHAT IS USER FRIENDLINESS OF AN
General criteria for user friendliness are the following:
Other criteria refer to how the purpose is achieved
- here are these criteria:
Information system effectivness
- to what extent the system fulfills the purpose. This is the
fundamental criteria and it is evaluated so that one finds what relevant
features system offers.
Effort to use the system,
and that is determined by:
time and knowledge required to master the information
system - idealy, no special knowledge should be required, the user should
know only how to do his job
time needed to do some task, e.g. nr. of material transactions
one can enter in the system what is required to make price calculation
nr. and complexity of decisions to be made in doing
some task - that should be minimized.
Evaluation of TOMAS, applying this criteria, follows.
Ergonomy in using the system
- making the best fit to phycical properties of men.
EFFECTIVNESS OF TOMAS
The purpose of the business management information
TOMAS supports these needs more complete than any other
system on the market. There is no other system with similar capabilities.
Hence, the list of answers to the "what" question is more complete
than for any other system.
support for work procesess
suppeort for management and decision making.
FACTORS FOR EFFORT MINIMIZATION
IN USING TOMAS
Design of TOMAS
True integrality -
everything is in the frame of a single system, there is no need to rewrite
the data, sinchronize the data etc.
Enormous elasticity - various
parameters, characteristicse, price types, formulas, multicurrency, multilinguality,
adaptable reports etc enable enormous adaptability of TOMAS to user needs.
Hence, for any option of the system, no more than
2 steps are required. Also, the screens are carefully structured, with
no unnecessary characters.
all subsystems offered with one screen
options for each sybsystem on one screen, as well.
Uniformity of use -
all functions are used uniformly, throughout the system (data entry, choice
of parameters etc).
Templates for data entry -
the user could define automatic movements thru the screen and default values
for the fields. This makes data entry easier and reduces possibility for
Adjustable data validation -
e.g. for an account could be defined that partner code or cost center must
(not) be associated. This reduces work and eliminates errors, as well.
e.g. automatic booking of invoices, associated accounts etc.
Search based on the description -
for materials, partners etc., when code is missing.
Automatic transfer to another option -
for complex business procedures, that require several options of TOMAS,
these options are chained, so that the user after one option does not go
to menu to choose the next option and does not need to repeat parameters
that are already defined in previous option. For example, after entering
sales order, calculation of the quotation could be done and printed.
Logically and/or phisically difficult tasks are supported
with a lot of automatism and bulidt in inteligence -
e.g. making proposals for payments, calculations with complex user defined
Real time management -
one gets the information what happens now, this very second in inventories,
unfinished production, accounts receivables etc.
Enormous possibility of choice:
type of report (detailed, summary, ABC analysis etc)
selection of data
levels of summarizing
Informationbase - comprehensive, coplete information,
automatically updated, permanently available.
Editor for using the reports:
fast and easy locating the data one needs
possibilities to modify the report, add comments etc.
Easy to learn - 1 day/subsystem, computer literacy
on line, i.e. permanently available.