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Office Support Systems Analysis and Design

Objective

The overall aim of OSSAD was to develop, implement and validate a problem-oriented office system analysis and design methodology using a formal office language to help users and manufacturers to specify and implement a computer-based Office Support System(OSS) and to meet the needs of end-users and organisations. More specific objectives were to:
-obtain a formal and unambiguous description of office work, comprehensible not only to analysts and designers but also to office managers, so that they could validate it and suggest modifications and solutions
-relate office descriptions to relevant organisation performance criteria and help evaluate office work
-validate this description in real office environments by evaluating and improving it on the basis of field studies
-specify requirements of office support systems with respect to the user, the organisation and the technical solution, based on empirical findings in existing offices.
The overall aim of office support systems analysis and design (OSSAD) was to develop, implement and validate a problem oriented office system analysis and design methodology using a formal office language to help users and manufacturers to specify and implement a computer based office support system (OSS) and to meet the needs of end users organizations.

The achievements of the project were as follows:
development of different methods for office analysis (eg, office functions analysis) based on the OSSAD model, which included abstract, descriptive and specification layers;
development of a glossary of terms to describe office work and development of a graphical mapping of formal office language;
validation of the abstract and descriptive model and the related data collection instruments;
which production of and OSSAD manual which consists of a description of the models and a presentation of the language, and covers the whole process of reorganizing an office support system involving contract setting, situation analysis, system design, implement changes and monitor system performance (this manual supports the project management process and can be used to tailor data collection instruments to the needs of specific users and organizations);
testing of the design methodology in field studies (the findings are included in the final OSSAD manual).
The achievements of the OSSAD project were as follows:
-Development of different methods for office analysis (eg office functions analysis) based on the OSSAD model, which includes abstract, descriptive and specification layers.
-A glossary of terms to describe office work was developed, and a graphical mapping of formal office language specified.
-The abstract and descriptive model and the related data collection instruments were validated in field studies in banks in France, Italy and Germany.
-An OSSAD manual is available. It consists of a description of the models and a presentation of the language, and covers the whole process of reorganising an office support system (set contract, analyse situation, design system, implement changes, monito r system performance). This manual supports the project management process and can be used to tailor data collection instruments to the needs of specific users and organisations.
-The design methodology was tested in field studies and the findings included in the final OSSAD manual and in the field test report.
Exploitation
The OSSAD methodology has been sold to over 10 projects and used to solve particular problems or implement overall methodologies in organisations needing a framework for future investigations into and improvements of office work. OSSAD is also being used in university training courses. A spin-off product, OrgSolution, is also available. This tool supports the OSSAD methodology in helping the analysis and restructuring of office work.

Coordinator

Institut für Organisationsforschung und Technologieanwendung
Address
Kästlenstraße 32
81827 München
Germany

Participants (3)

CENTRE D'ETUDES DU MANAGEMENT
France
Address
Boulevard Des Camus
13540 Puyricard
Ipachi Istituto per l'Automazione delle Casse di Risparmio
Italy
Address
Via Adolfo Rava
00142 Roma
Università degli Studi di Milano
Italy
Address
Via Moretto Da Brescia
20133 Milano