How computers affect management

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MIT Press, 1972 - Computers - 244 pages
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How do computers affect management? What are the implications of these effects for management policy and understanding? These are the questions that this book seeks to answer. It is based on a three-year study that traced the development and implementation of different types of computer applications in a number of companies in order to discover how the managers were affected. The research showed that most of the effects of the computer on management are not inevitable ones, but depend upon the use that management makes of the possibilities provided by the new system and of the stimulus, arising from its development, to review their assumptions and methods. This finding places the computer in perspective as a management tool. Its effective use is shown to depend primarily upon managers' understanding of the problems of their business and upon their willingness to try, and to use, new methods of tackling some of them. The book starts by describing the different sources of effects on management from the computer. It gives the case histories of the experience of five companies in developing different types of computer applications. These include the computerization of branch banking, production planning and control, and the development of a large investment-planning model. Comparisons are made with the experience of five other companies. One chapter discusses the nature of the relations between computer specialists and user managers, the reasons for difficulties between them, and what can be done to reduce them. Another chapter describes what kind of understanding managers need for different types of computer applications. The last chapter summarizes the management implications of the study.

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Contents

Aims and Plan of Research
3
Clerical Procedures
29
Production Planning and Control
48
Copyright

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About the author (1972)

Rosemary Stewart, best known as a business management theorist, has always been fascinated by how people work. In this book she combines her professional interests with her lifelong passion for art, which she discovered the first time she went to the Louvre as a child. She is married to the eminent mathematician Ioan James and lives in Oxford, England.

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