Describe four functional characteristics of Decision Support Systems (DSS).

CPA-Quantitative-Analysis-Section-4 BLOCK RELEASE

This refers to an information system that supports managers in day-to-day decision-making, particularly in semi-structured problem solving. DSSs emphasize on small simple models, which can easily be understood and used managers, rather than complex integrated systems that need information specialists to operate.
Functional characteristics:
1. They provide analytical capabilities. DSSs are built explicitly with a variety of models to analyse data, or they can condense large amounts of data into a form, which can be analysed decision makers.
2. They present information in simple graphical form and they may also include tabular representation.
3. They combine both internal and external information to support decision-making. External information for a DSS such as a voyage estimating system could include port rates, fuel costs, and port distances. Internal information could include freight rates for various types of cargo, labour costs, fuel and water consumption, etc
4. The DSS only provides support to decision making providing timely information. It doesn‘t, however, perform decision-making.
5. They are suited for semi-structured problems e.g. a voyage estimating system could answer the question: Given a customer delivery schedule and an offered freight rate, which vessel would be assigned and at what rate in order to maximize profits?

6. They are developed with the participation and often, individual managers or a group of managers to support a range of decisions of concern to them.
7. They‘re common where effective problem solving is enhanced interaction between computer and manager.

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