The systems survey, often called a feasibility study or preliminary feasibility study, is a set of procedures conducted to determine the feasibility of a potential systems development project and to prepare a systems development plan for projects considered feasible. Refer to Figure 6.1 to see the system survey’s place in the SDLC (first), its inputs (request for systems development and miscellaneous environmental information), and its outputs (approved feasibility document).
Each step in the SDLC has goals that support the systems development objectives (to develop Information Systems that satisfy the organization’s needs and to develop Information Systems efficiently and effectively). An organization conducts a systems survey to determine whether it is worthwhile to proceed with subsequent development steps. The systems survey goals are as follows:
- Identify the nature and the extent of systems development by determining for each reported problem the problem’s existence (i.e., does a problem really exist?) and nature (i.e., what is causing the problem?).
- Determine the scope of the problem.
- Propose a course of action that might solve the problem.
- Determine the feasibility of any proposed development. Is there a technically, economically, and operationally feasible solution to the problem?
- Devise a detailed plan for conducting the analysis step. Determine who will conduct the analysis, who will head the project team, what tasks are required, and what the development timetable is.
- Devise a summary plan for the entire development project.
What are the systems survey goals?