A Conceptual Perspective
In the late 1970s, a number of companies developed interactive information systems that used data and models to help managers analyze semi-structured problems. These systems were called Decision Support Systems. DSS can be designed to support decision-makers at any level in an organization. They can support operations, financial management and strategic decision-making. Many of the more interesting DSS are targeted for middle and senior managers. DSS are also often designed for specific types of organizations like hospitals, banks or insurance companies. These systems are sometimes referred to as vertical market or industry-specific DSS.
DSS are both off-the-shelf and custom designed systems. DSS may support a small group of managers using a single personal computer or a large group of managers in a networked client-server environment. These latter systems are often called Enterprise-Wide DSS.
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