Don’t MISunderstand the power of MIS

One of the main stumbling blocks to better business is underperforming management information systems (MIS).

It’s not that companies necessarily lack investment in IT. To survive and grow, most have purchased a system and upgraded it at strategic intervals so that it continues to handle a fluid and developing workflow.

But does your company really understand the power of first-rate MIS? Does your system deliver the right information to the right people, in the right form, at the right time, every time?

Fully integrated, top-notch MIS is an absolute boon to business, and small and medium firms must wake up to the time, cost and materials savings that an end-to-end workflow solution provides.

To take an example from the print business, JDF (Job Definition Format) enables more job definition elements to be prescribed than any other format – from materials, dimensions and ink settings through to deadlines. It eliminates time-consuming re-entry of information as it passes along the production chain, and reduces the potential for errors to be introduced. Meanwhile, real-time progress and feedback is tracked by the MIS system through JMF (Job Messaging Format). This puts automation into the hands of small and medium-sized packaging companies – and automation is the gold standard in this line of business.

In any business, there is no question that spot-on accuracy and quality in processes saves money. Long term, it can save a fortune. It never fails to astound me how frequently companies are left footing the bill for mistakes and missed opportunities, often caused as information passes along the chain. And this is the issue. It doesn’t matter whether it is the client’s dodgy brief or the supplier’s handling of it that is at the root of the problem. When a problem occurs, it is you, the supplier, who invariably loses out. The choice is to hold up your hands and write off time and materials for an incorrect job, or fight your corner and risk an unhappy client.

The answer lies in having the right information available from the outset to the end of a job. And the only way to achieve this is through the power of high-performing MIS.
Next month’s blog: Implementing MIS

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