It is concerned with the whole of the system and its performance is measured with the objectives for which it has been made by taking a comprehensive view. It is a step by step procedure to study the whole system along with its subsystems.
The system should be designed by keeping the organizational objectives in the mind. For designing of MIS top-down approach should be followed. The top-down approach means the system development should start from the determination of the management needs and overall objectives of the business.
An MIS also should be future oriented. MIS should also look to the future. In other words, It should not only provide past or historical information that already exists. It has to provide information on the idea of projections that are to be initiated in future.
A management information system should be integrated. An MIS is a logically integrated system comprising of subsystems. Where all the activities of each subsystem are inter-related. Integration is possible by the rotation of the data among those subsystems. Integration is significant because of its ability to produce more meaningful information. It is important to have an integrated system because to make an effective decision, information may be required from different areas or within the different parts of the organization. In order to provide a total solution of the plan, a complete and integrated information is needed which can only be provided by an integrated system.
Flexibility also important for an MIS. A system must be able to adopt changes and should also be dynamic. It should be designed in such a way that it can be modified to changing circumstances. It must be capable of expansion, accommodate, growth or a new type of processing activities.
An incomplete or partial presentation of data will result in a call that doesn’t have the expected results. Information should be complete and contain all the facts that are necessary for the decision makers to satisfactorily solve the problem.
The system should be able to serve to a specific needs of managers at different levels that are strategic planning level, management control level and operational control level. So, it should be designed accordingly to present that criteria.
MIS should also be exception based. In some abnormal cases, the expected value may vary beyond the sufferance limits. In those cases, there should be exception reporting to the decision makers at the required level.
Common data flow is a logical cost-effective concept of making an MIS more meaningful. There should be some common data flows in the system in order to avoid data redundancy and duplicity.
Long-term planning is another important characteristic of MIS that should have. It should not get obsolete very soon. At the time of designing of MIS, the system analyser should keep in mind that the design should be a future-oriented and future effectiveness.
Subsystem concept is another characteristic of MIS which says that the system must be broken down into subsystems so that the work can be completed easily and on time. Although a system is considered as a single entity, a big system should be divided into subsystems so that one subsystem can be implemented at a time for better effectiveness.
Reliability and accuracy is another key point of an effective MIS. MIS whole improves the efficiency of the complete organisation. So, the information provided should be reliable and accurate in all aspects. Inadequate or incorrect information generally leads to the decision of poor quality.