3. Read the following scenario. Read the following scenario and explain to the owner and to the clerks the differences between logical and physical modeling. When and why would anyone use each? Remember, users and managers each have different perspectives, needs, and concerns.
Smalltown Hardware and Home Improvement (yes, headquartered in Smalltown, Arkansas!) is expanding beyond the owner’s wildest dreams. She has hired your small consulting company to analyze the need for a new system. Things have been stressed between her and you since you started working with her because she says you keep using this “techy” language and diagrams that she doesn’t understand. Further, she feels that you keep ignoring “how” she does things, instead, only focusing on “what” she does. She wants you to improve how she does things – she knows what she does. Since you are about to present DFDs to both the owner and to the store clerks, you know that you need to address some issues now.
4. Evaluate the following scenario using the PIECES framework. Do not be concerned that you are unfamiliar with the setting – that isn’t unusual for any systems analyst. Once you have completed the analysis, use the results to brainstorm potential questions you would ask the end user.
Smalltown Booksellers is a national chain of bookstores (headquartered in Smalltown, Arkansas!) specializing in all types of books for the family. Each store is responsible for maintaining their own customer lists. Data on current customers are captured at point of sale. Through their frequent customer program they are able to gather not only the names and addresses of their customers, but also their buying patterns. This way, the local store can target promotions to those customers. The corporate office maintains their own list of customers, but theirs is mainly only those involved in the frequent customer program. They also purchase lists of potential clients from other companies.
Smalltown Booksellers has three types of promotions: General Corporate, Local, and Frequent Buyer. Promotions consist of either percent off coupons or a mailer showing the monthly sales items. General Corporate promotions are sent to potential new clients as well as to those in the frequent buyer program. Local promotions are developed and implemented by the local stores with little influence or contact with the corporate office. All people on the local customer list are sent the promotion, including those on the frequent buyer lists. As you would expect, the Frequent Buyer promotions target the customers in the frequent buyer program.
The manager of the Novi, Michigan, store was commenting that she really didn’t understand how these promotions were working. She received 6 coupons in the mail one month; four were duplicates, and one wasn’t relevant for her store. She also received two catalogs. This didn’t make any sense to her. Not only that, when customers brought in the coupons, there was no way to tie the customer to the coupon. At the corporate level, Smalltown Booksellers doesn’t know how well these promotions are working either.