Stands for "Management Information System." An MIS is a system designed to manage information within a company or organization. This includes employees, departments, projects, clients, finances, and other types of data. At its most general level, an MIS may include non-computer based elements, such as the structural hierarchy of an organization. However, in the computing world, an MIS typically refers to the hardware and software used to manage information.
The hardware required for a management information system can vary widely depending on the size and data processing requirements of an organization. A small business, for example, may only need a single machine to store information, such as employee data, projects, and invoices. A large business may require several systems that allow employees to share data securely across multiple locations. Data stored in an MIS is often backed up in multiple locations for redundancy.
Of course, hardware must have the appropriate software installed to assist in a management information system. Some common functions of MIS software include employee record keeping, invoicing, inventory management, project planning, customer relationship management, and business analysis. Some software programs are designed for specific tasks, such as maintaining financial records or backing up data. Other programs are designed to be comprehensive solutions that perform multiple MIS functions in a single software package.
Examples of MIS software include Microsoft Dynamics, Fleetmatics WORK, Clarity Professional MIS, and Tharstern Limited. MIS programs designed specifically for the graphics and print industry include Avanti Slingshot, EFI Pace, and DDS Accura. Most MIS software programs are available as desktop applications, though many solutions now include web-based interfaces and mobile apps as well.