What do you mean by Decision Support System (DSS)? Describe DSS with a relevant example of its use in marketing and sales.

A Management Information System ICT Revision Questions and Answers

Decisions Support System is a computer-based information system that provides interactive information support to managers and business professionals during the decision-making process. Thus, DSS itself is not the decision maker rather it is a support to manager to make the good decision in case of semi-structured issues. DSS normally works with following models:
– Analytical models
– Specialized databases
– A decision maker‘s own insights and judgments
– An interactive, computer-based modeling process
DSS is that type of system which supports managers while solving the semi-structured problems by providing the options from different prospects. DSS gives the analysis based upon the mathematical/statistical model.
Here is an example of use of DSS in sales and marketing.
The total units of sales are assumed to be the function of following parameters (not only this):
• Incentives to the sales persons
• Promotion
• Rivalry
• Quality of product
• Customer economic status

These parameters do not have equal weightage while determining the sales. Thus the total units sales will be the sum of products of the weightage and the variables. The sum of the product of weightage factors and variable will be the mathematical model for the DSS. This model can be linear of non-linear equation. Hence the sales forecasting analysis can be done by changing the parameters involved. It also helps in reverse tracking. That is in order to get particulars amounts of product sold, how much incentives is to be given to sales persons, how much amount to be invested in promotion, what should be the quality of the product etc.
Now decision maker can make the analysis with the help of DSS by changing the cost of promotion on sales. Similarly the effect of sales can be analyzed with the change in the incentives to the sales persons. At the same time, the effect of more than one parameters also can be checked.

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