Copyright 2014 Nikolas S. Boyd. Permission is granted to copy this document provided this copyright statement is retained in all copies.
In the context of this Model, an Improvement
improves a business Activity in some measurable way.
Business activities are most valuable when they are aligned with specific and clearly formulated objectives. Each business needs to have mission and vision statements that focus on the ends the business intends to effect in the world. To effect these ends, a business has processes (a series of activities), especially processes that operate on information (and so need information systems). Business information systems are products (with qualities) that provide services (which also have qualities). Information services support and improve business operations by streamlining business processes (which have their own qualities).
An improvement changes the level of some measurable quality of a business activity, or it may enable the conduct of a business activity that would be difficult, unaffordable, or impossible to conduct otherwise. So, each business needs to determine its business process and improvement objectives. Based on these processing and improvement objectives, a business needs to specify the product and service qualities required of its information systems.
Ideally, the qualities of a software product and the services it provides will be aligned with and supportive of the business objectives expressed in the business mission and vision statements. So, a business needs to clearly define its objectives (as ends) and the means for achieving those objectives (especially by using information systems) through the definition of measurable changes in the levels of the qualities about which it is most concerned.