In the 21st century, almost each and every organisation's significant business relationships with suppliers, customers and employees are enabled and arbitrated digitally. All these firms are known as digital firms, for e.g. Cisco Systems and Dell Computers, are close to becoming digital firms. And to manage and organize these digital firms Information System is required.
The transformation of the traditional business world is surely innovated by a continuous flow of Information Technology.
Define Information System
An Information system is a group of interconnected components that work collectively to carry out input, process, store and distribute information to support decision making and control in an organisation, or we can say that software and hardware system that support data-intensive application is known as Information System.
The interdependences between organisations and information system and its ability to enforce corporate strategies and achieve collective goals are growing rapidly.
There are almost six major objectives for which business firm would like to invest heavily in information system -
- Operational Excellence
- New Products, services and business models
- Customer and supplier intimacy
- Improved decision making
- Competitive advantage and survival
In the whole the information system comprises of three activities, i.e.
- To produce the information that needs to make decisions from data available in internal and external environment.
- To control operation which include processing and analysis of data.
- At last a new product is created and transfers the processed information to further staff.
The Information System also requires feedback in return to appropriate members, which help them in evaluation and correction in the input stage.
As discussed above, almost every sector whether it is transportation, education, finance, health, construction, production etc have information system in their management.
There is a huge demand of information system in steel industries. Therefore, we are focussed on the management information system of steel conglomerate ArcelorMittal.
ArcelorMittal (owner Mr. L.N. Mittal) is a honcho in almost all major global market, whether it is construction, appliances, automotive and packaging.
The group also have great investment in R&D and technology, therefore an effective information system is required as the company holds fairly large captive supplies of raw material and operates wide distribution network.
Information requirements at each level of management -
Operational management -
The workforce of ArcelorMittal is extremely large, so an effective information system is required to keep the employees, customers and suppliers data.
Operational managers have to keep track of the primary activities and transaction of the organisation, such as sales, receipts, pay sheet, cash deposits, credit decisions, and the flow of material in a factory and for this they need a system.
Transaction processing systems (TPS) provides this kind of system. It purposes is to perform the frequent routine external and internal transactions that serve the operational level of organisation like customer support, supplier intimacy etc.
Some of the types of the TPS are -
A Payroll TPS -
The Payroll TPS keeps the record of the money paid to the employees in the office, workers in the Steel factory etc. It has all the personal as well as official details of the employee for e.g. SS No., working hours etc. Each of the payment information is updated once it is paid and keeps record of all types of employee's transaction.
One of the software of the payroll TPS is manufactured by 'SAGE' which is a software development firm, it has introduced software 'Sage Payroll', for the same purpose.
Oracle TUXEDO TPS -
Another TPS is made by Oracle, is 'TUXEDO 'which provides sophisticated database, cost effective reliability, extreme scalability more than thousands of transactions per second is highly useful to be used in the organisation. 
Middle Management -
Middle management i.e. the managers, VPs etc. needs systems to help with monitoring, controlling, decision making, administrative and predict the future performance. Management Information System (MIS) provide this type of system.
- MIS system is one of the five major CBIS subsystems.
Its purpose is to provide middle managers information in the form of reports & obtain output from simulations mathematical model, to predict future performance.
- MIS compresses and present report on the company's basic operations using data supplied by TPS.
Some of the MIS systems available are -
- Accounting Information System (AIS) - It is the only CBIS subsystem of MIS that processes financial transaction and provide internal reporting to the managers for nonroutine decision making and also external reporting to outside parties like creditors, stakeholders etc.
- Financial Management Information System - It provides financial information to all financial managers within an organisation including CFO i.e. to Aditya Mittal the CFO of ArcelorMittal.
- Manufacturing Management Information System - In ArcelorMittal there is large use of warehousing, but by using this information system, they can stop use of warehousing. 
- Decision Support System (DSS) - It supports nonroutine decision making for middle management. It uses internal information from TPS & MIS and also from external source.
- Example - Voyage - Estimating Decision Support System
Senior Management -
Executive support system (ESS) helps senior manager like CEO, CFO to address strategic issues, long term trends both inside and outside of the environment and also draw compressed information from internal MIS and DSS.
Digital Dashboard is a popular feature of ESS. It permit senior to make sense out of the avalanche of statistics ordered by enterprise-wide solution application. E.g. Microsoft's Digital Dashboard embedded with Microsoft Outlook 2000 frame.
Information System in ArcelorMittal
- Geographical Information System (GIS) - It uses maps to display about different locations and used by marketing staff for performance analysis.
- The company is storing spatial data in DWG files (AutoCAD) and non spatial data are stored in SQL servers.
- 'AutoCAD Map guide' and 'Macromedia ColdFusion Studio 5' are used to make queries.
- Global Purchasing - ArcelorMittal is using 'Supply Portal' to establish a connection channel with suppliers. It gives supplier an access to general information, notices etc. to other services and application.
- Global Positioning System (GPS) -In ArcelorMittal, each slab carrier is equipped in PC having GPS. The position of the slab carrier is used to record the storage points of the slab submitted by the carrier, any change will get stored in PC. 
- High-Tech positioning system ( Wireless Ethernet Connection at ArcelorMittal cooking plant) - The company has installed data transfer between the PLC's i.e. Programmable Control Logic of the mobile oven machines and the central PLC in the master station which also uses Ethernet protocol.
- SAP - ArcelorMittal is managing on the whole seven global SAP competency centres it share resources and application features across the company.
ArcelorMittal Gent's has area of 12KM2 and long road and railway, resembling small town. Hence, GIS system is used to manage this infrastructure in an efficient way. 
Information technology is the second name of advancement. It keeps on upgrading itself. There are many new technologies that can make advancement in Information system of ArcelorMittal. Some of them are -
- PrimeBase XT -
- Oracle Exadata Version 2 - It is the first database machine that has the facility of online transaction along with the data warehousing, best used for information system. It contains hardware by Sun and software by Oracle.
- SOA coupled with XTP (Extreme Transaction Processing)
It is a pluggable storage engine for MySQL, used for storing, caching and data management of MySQL. It is an open source project and ACID compliant. It can be used in ArcelorMittal to carry out data maintenance in medium segments of the company. It is used for fast reading and access of the data.
It is the world's first OLTP Database Machine, with Sun FlashFire Technology.
Security measures that are in place for their information system-
Wireless Ethernet connection at cooking place of ArcelorMittal -
It is a High-Tech positioning system - here, the Ethernet protocol is used to control fully automated operating machines.
Security measures - The network is predominantly furnished in glass fibres.
- There is a separate virtual network (V-LAN) so the network load is distributed per machine.
- The network load is only 10 % of the total capacity.
- In this routers are attached to prevent against broadcast storms.
- ArcelorMittal use Veroline PI for detection and positioning.
The Geographic Information System -
- ArcelorMittal is making use of GIS to detect any hazardous substances, information of fire detection system etc so as to reduce the risk in the environment.
- The earthing and underground cables can be monitored.
- Contain information of gantry canes of ArcelorMittal Gent.
Additional Security -
As ArcelorMittal has a huge network of each segment of its profession, the loop hole in the large information system is quite possible. And Cisco provides both hardware and software for its security.
Some of the recommended softwares and hardware -
- Hardware - Cisco ASA 5500 Series Firewall Edition, provides the world-class information system security and networking services, so that business can spread applications and networks in a highly reliable manner, in cost effective manner.
Some of the other hardware are -
- Cisco IOS Firewall
- Cisco IOS IPSec VPN
- Cisco IOS Intrusion Prevention System
Other software is Cisco IOS and NX-OS Software etc.
Importance of Cloud Computing -
The huge organisations like ArcelorMittal have bulk of information and data that is to be permanently stored in remote servers, in monolithic data centres and are to be accessed and updated over the internet using clients which include notebooks, sophisticated network devices, mobile devices etc. All of these equipments require huge investment and a large setup including space and workforce. So, to overcome this problem some of the hardware firms namely IBM, HP & DELL are manufacturing huge computing centres known as ' CLOUD COMPUTING' centres which provide computing power, data storage and high speed internet connections to such type of large firm that depends on information systems. Thus, cloud computing is a model of computing where instead of purchasing their own expensive hardware and softwares, firms and individuals obtain computing power and software applications over the internet.
Considering the whole study, it is clear that any company that has sophisticated organisation structure and heavy flow of information and data within and outside its environment requires advance information system to carry out its all operations. And thus, becomes a conglomerate in every sector.
Books Referred -
- Bocij Paul, Greasley Andrew, Simon Hickie,(2008),Business Information Systems, (Technology, Development & Management), 4thedition, Financial Times, Prentice Hall, England, Pg. 42, 245, 266.
- Laudon C. Kenneth, Laudon P. Jane, Management Information Systems, Managing The Digital Firm. 11th Edition, Pearson (Global Edition), Pg. 42, 46, 47, 75, 76
- McLeod Raymond, Jr., Schell George, Management Information Systems, 8th Edn, prentice Hall Publishing, Pg. 219, 239.
- Applegate, Lynda M.. (2003) Corporate Information Systems Management: Text and Cases, (6th edn), Irwin
- O'Brien, J, Marakas, G (2008) Management Information Systems, McGraw-Hill, New York.
Websites Referred -