Unit 34 Business Systems

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The aim of this unit is to introduce students to the theoretical basis for business systems and their practical application. Students will understand and appreciate how business systems support the achievement of organisational objectives, particularly through the management of information and the use of Information Communications Technology (ICT) to gain a competitive advantage. Students will explore the role of systems within organisations, the management of business systems and analytical tools and techniques for monitoring and measuring control and delivery.On successful completion of this unit students will have developed sufficient knowledge and understanding of the practical application of a business system to be able to utilise this ‘tool’ as a more effective and efficient manager. Students will also be able to contribute to the design of a business system in a workplace context

Learning outcomes

LO1 Evaluate the contribution of business systems to organisational performance

Supporting the effectiveness and efficiency of an organisation:

  • Definitions of business systems vs business processes.
  • How do business systems enable complex organisations to function?
  • How do business systems restrict or promote sustainable organisational performance?
  • Integrated business systems.
  • Perceptions and perspectives of systems.
  • The Systems Thinking approach and the use of Systems Thinking.
  • Strategic approach to business systems.
  • Business systems and the global context.

LO2 Analyse the internal and external factors which have an impact on systems and processes

Theory of constraints and the analysis of internal and external factors:

  • Defining the theory of constraints.
  • How to identify the weakest link and how to manage it.

External factors:

  • Exploiting technology to have a competitive edge including virtual facilities management, improving broadband capability and using cloud technology.
  • Assessing the external and internal interoperability of systems.
  • Environmental analysis and implications.
  • Legal restrictions that influence systems and processes

Internal factors:

  • The impact of organisational structures and employee motivation.
  • Different levels of interoperability.
  • Funding systems design and development.

LO3 Apply a range of analytical tools and techniques to business systems

Using analytical tools in the context of a business system:

  • Selecting the most appropriate tool for the context and situation.
  • Systems analysis.
  • Process mapping.
  • Reverse engineering.
  • Stakeholder analysis.
  • CATWOE analysis.

LO4 Recommend improvements in organisational processes and systems

Analysing the design, implementation and monitoring of changes to a business system:

  • Process design
  • Role of ICT in business improvement.
  • Data analysis and management.
  • Systems development techniques.
  • Monitoring, control and delivery using appropriate methods and techniques



  • HARRY, M. J. S. (2001) Business Information: A Systems Approach. London: Prentice Hall.
  • MAGAL, S. and WOOD, J. (2009) Essentials of Business Processes and Information Systems. Oxford: Wiley.
  • PALMER, A. and HARTLEY, B. (2012) Business Environment. Maidenhead: McGraw-Hill

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