ICT: what is good information? | tutor2u Business
Study notes

ICT: what is good information?

  • Levels: GCSE
  • Exam boards: AQA, Edexcel, OCR, IB

What are the main features of good quality information in a business? We summarise its key characteristics.

Good quality information is:

Relevant

Information obtained and used should be needed for decision-making - it doesn't matter how interesting it is. Businesses are often criticised for producing too much information simply because their information systems can "do it". How can we make sure information is relevant?

  1. Closely define the objectives of any information reports.
  2. Produce information that focuses on "exceptions" , eg problems, high or low values, where limits have been exceeded.

Up-to-date

Information needs to be timely if it is to be actioned. For example, the manager of a large retail business needs daily information on how stores are performing and which products are selling well (or not) so that immediate action can be taken. To improve the speed with which information is produced, businesses usually need to look at upgrading or replacing their information systems.

Accurate

As far as possible, information should be free from errors, ie the figures add up. Users of information should be told whenever assumptions or estimates have been used.

Accurate information is usually a function of accurate data collection. If information needs to be extremely accurate, then more time needs to be allocated for it to be checked. However, businesses need to guard against trying to produce "perfect" information - it is often more important for the information to be up-to-date than perfect.

Meeting user needs

Different users have different needs: A managing director doesn't have time to trawl through thick printouts of the week's production or sales listings - he or she wants a summary of the key facts. A quality control supervisor will want detailed information about quality testing results rather than a brief one-line summary of how things are going. It's a good idea to encourage users to help develop the style and format of information reporting that they require.

Easy to use and understand

Information should be clearly presented (eg, use summaries/charts) and concise. It also needs to be communicated using an appropriate medium (eg email, printed report, presentation). Businesses should also consider developing "templates" which are used consistently throughout the organisation so users get used to seeing information in a similar style.

Worth the cost

Information costs money. Data is costly to collect, analyse and report. Information takes time to read and assimilate. All users should question whether the information they recieve/have requested is worthwhile.

Reliable

Information should come from authoritative sources. It's good practice to quote the source used - whether it be internal or external sources. If estimates or assumptions have been applied, these should be clearly stated and explained.



Subscribe to email updates from tutor2u Business

Join 1000s of fellow Business teachers and students all getting the tutor2u Business team's latest resources and support delivered fresh in their inbox every morning.

You can also follow @tutor2uBusiness on Twitter, subscribe to our YouTube channel, or join our popular Facebook Groups.

Job board

Temporary Teacher of Mathematics

Frensham Heights School, Nr Farnham, Surrey

You might also like

Teaching Vacancies

Recruitment

Advertise your vacancies with tutor2u

Much cheaper & more effective than TES or the Guardian. Reach the audience you really want to apply for your teaching vacancy by posting directly to our website and related social media audiences.

Find our more ›

Advertise your teaching jobs with tutor2u

A New Home for tutor2u Resources

We've just flicked the switch on moving all our digital resources to instant digital download - via our new subject stores.

For every subject you can now access each digital resource as soon as it is ordered. This will always be the latest edition of each resource too (and we'll update you automatically if there is an upgraded version to use).

Simply add the required resources to your cart, checkout using the usual options and your resources will be available to access immediately via your mytutor2u account.