Table of Contents

  1. Introduction ……………………………………………………………………………… 3
  2. Analyzing and Identifying Problems…………………………………………………….. 3
  3. Hard and Soft problems …………………………………………………………………. 4
  4. Stakeholders and problem owners……………………………………………………….. 4
  5. Models, Tools and techniques…………………………………………………………… 5

5.1 Data Flow Diagrams…………………………………………………………………. 5

5.2 Business Process Model and Notation……………………………………………….. 6

  1. Object Oriented Analysis And Design (OOAD)……………………………………. 6
  2. Rich picture diagram of problems, stakeholders and problem owners…………………. 7
  3. SSM in the Blum’s Matrix………………………………………………………………. 8
  4. Reference……………………………………………………………………………….. 9
  1. Introduction

The business world has become increasingly competitive, with many new players coming in and competing for the same market share. Further, technological changes have continued to grow and advance unabated, making the world smaller and creating the concept of globalization in which businesses, people, economies, and other environmental (business) factors more interconnected. Businesses are increasingly finding themselves in the cross hairs of these dynamics; on the one hand, there are external factors, such as increased competition and environmental factors putting pressure on the organization and on the other hand, internal dynamics, such as decision making and management and operational processes to be considered (Brooks, Weatherston and Wilkinson, 2010). As such, businesses and organizations are thrust into a cycle in which they must continuously change and adapt, just to stay afloat; the business world has evolved such that adaptability has become the new competitive edge, above even novel factors such as market leadership and innovation, according to Reeves and Deimler (2016). New trends such as the massive use of social media and other technology platforms have fundamentally changed, or is changing, how brands interact with their customers. Social media has become even more influential than traditional media (Cunningham, Silver & Craig, 2016), (Merchant, 2015). These are realities that businesses cannot afford to ignore. In this context, this paper is a business analysis of the Hair for Your business case in which a father’s death has occasioned three children to take over the salon business, each of who are managing the three branches. The business has been experiencing pressures from competition, thinning profits, and technological challenges. The paper will identify the challenges, classify them, list models and techniques that can be utilized in analyzing the situation and critique them. The paper also brings the issues together using a rich picture diagram and then uses Blum’s paper to place the SSM in a specific quadrant.

  1. Analyzing and Identifying Problems

The Hair for you problems related to technical issues as well human related as well. One of the main problem after studying this case is effective communication that is lacking among the owners of salons. Another problem is lack of leadership to make right decisions. One of the technical problem is the use of old methods to run the business rather than using technology in their business. Bill uses the SMS to coordinate with customers regarding their appointment times, while other two salons uses the phone by hairdressers to call customers to coordinate with appointments that takes time as well. There is no use of social media of these salons which the customers asked them to have some social media presence as well. 

There is no use of business information systems instead use of manual pay processing and making phone calls. There is no web or social media presence of business as well. Customer also asked for social media like Facebook, twitter accounts must be there as well. 

  1. Hard and Soft Problems

The Hair for You case study brings to the fore both soft and hard problems; there are problems and challenges due to human factors as there are problems  and challenges due to technical issues. The technical issues emanate, in a way, from the human problems, so it is logical to begin by identifying and analyzing the human (soft) challenges and problems. 

 One of the biggest problems is communication as they can’t seem to effectively communicate because everyone is using their own method of communication in business and with clients. There is huge difference of each branch have their own method to communicate with clients because it varies from one salon owner to other, so these are considered as soft systems problems.  The other challenge is poor problem solving as well as wanting leadership qualities as they cannot have same methodology to solve it and manage their salon branch, everyone using their own techniques so these problems are considered as Soft system problems. Another challenge is an apparent lack of grasp of modern, cost effective and widely used technology as Bill Junior proposes the use of SMS to communicate with customers, when methods, such as social media could even be more effective. These are soft problems. 

The other issues are technical, including lack of business systems information management systems, poor interconnectivity, and reliance on manual legacy systems such as manual pay processing and making telephone calls to book appointments. It is because well-structured problem and because of well understood process that are routinely solved are hard system problems.   Another problem is lack of business integration where there are disparate branches that are not integrated with business information systems management. Another technical problem is a lack of Internet and web presence; all these are hard problems.

  1. Stakeholders and problem owners
JordanVery High
Bill JrVery High
SallyVery High
Hair for YouHigh
CommunicationJordan, Bill Jr, Sally
Problem solving frameworkJordan, Bill Jr, Sally
Investment in technologyJordan, Bill Jr, Sally
New product lineJordan
New marketsJordan, Bill Jr, Sally
New communication channels (using social media platforms)Jordan, Bill Jr, Sally
Automated cash register and appointment systemJordan
No web or social media presence Customers
Branch expansionSally

Hair for You does not really use a modern ICT system; however, it is still a system that can be evaluated and analyzed using various tools, techniques, and models. The techniques include the data flow diagram (DFD) that is used for functional modeling. Another approach would be the use of object oriented analysis and design (OOAD) used technically to analyze and design systems. The Business process model and notation (BPMN) is also another approach that can be used in the hair for You situation.

  1. Models, Tools and techniques
    1. Data Flow Diagrams

DFDs refer to graphical representations of how data flows within and through an information system where its aspects and processes are modeled. It is usually used as a preliminary measure to develop a system’s overview without getting into great detail. As such, the DFD is a useful tool in having a higher level view of a system and is therefore, an important tool to help with effective planning. Hair for You can use it to evaluate its systems before going into designing the system.  The DFD is also valuable in communicating to present users, the existing system, being a graphical technique that is straightforward and therefore, simplifying understanding the system. DFDs can also offer detailed presentations of components in a system and both non technical and technical audiences can understand it (Davies, Green, Rosemann, Indulska & Gallo, 2006). However, DFDs has its limitations and demerits; it only gives a basic, high level view and does not go into the details. The DFD takes a long time to develop and this can be a challenge for the case study, given the urgency of the challenges. Because it takes long, managerial support for it may wane such that it is not completed or done thoroughly. The DFD also leaves out physical considerations, yet these are important components of a business information system. Further, developers and programmers coding or developing a system may be confused by it as it omits physical aspects and is too basic and not detailed (Shen, Wall, Zaremba, Chen & Browne, 2004).

            5.2 Business Process Model and Notation

This refers to the graphical presentation and description of a diagram that defines business processes within a business process model. The BPM has a major drawback in that it is very complex, having 100 graphical process elements as well as being about 500 pages. This makes it not only difficult to adapt, but also to learn for practical use as the different semantics and elements can be interpreted wrongly leading to wrong conclusions. Further, its execution is not standardized while its tools provide only partial support for executing BPMN diagrams (Grikštaitė, 2008). The models are ambiguous and so cannot be effectively used in sharing models, while its support for decision making, business rules, and routine work and knowledge is weak or poor. However, it has certain merits, including being internationally ISO standardized and being useful in defining diagram interchange and execution semantics, apart from having a rich repertoire of tolls and diagrams (Papajorgji, Pinet, Guimarães &Papathanasiou, 2016).

          5.3  Object Oriented Analysis And Design (OOAD)

This is the procedure for identifying engineering requirements for software with respect to the object model of the software. With the OOAD, it is not easy to determine all necessary objects and classes needed for a system. OOAD requires a different approach to managing software projects, making its effective implementation difficult; project managers then easily confuse substance and style (Dathan & Ramnath, 2015). The OOAD lacks an explicit procedure for reuse of code and other semantics; this implies that there is limited reuse in large scale projects. Software applications are developed for scalability and reuse is an important factor in ensuring scalability and modification for future environments. However, OOAD is easy to understand and use, as well as being easy to maintain. It’s also able to help reduce the time and cost of development and improves system quality as programs can be reused (Wang, 2006). In this Hair for you case, OOAD use to solve the complex problems that are in business mostly the soft problems can be solved using this approach and it can be used for hard problems as well. 

  1. Rich picture diagram of problems, stakeholders and problem owners

The rich picture diagram is as shown below;

C:\Users\matee\Desktop\Semester 4\Business info system analysis\Assigment 1 (Due 7sep Friday )\Rich picture.png
  1. SSM in The Blum’s Matrix

The Blum’s matrix has four quadrants namely, conceptual, formal, problem oriented, and product oriented quadrants. Each quadrant alludes to the methodology of solving problems and coming up with solutions, as shown below;

Problem orientedProduct oriented

The process of developing software is a transformation of needs into products to handle those needs  and first, a conceptual model that defines how the software responds to the need must be developed.  The conceptual model is then transformed into the formal model prescribing what the software will do (Blum,1994). The SSM is an approach to BPM (business process modeling) that defines how organizational processes are modeled used in solving specific and general problems in managing change. In the context of the Blum’s diagram (Fig 2), SSM will fall into the fourth quadrant. This is because SSM has seven steps that start by identifying the situation considered problematic and sequentially goes to to expressing the problem situation, followed by a formulation of root definitions. Conceptual models are then built and compared to real world situations before possible changes are defined and action taken to improve the problem situation (Wilson & Van Haperen, 2015). In the quadrant IV; the methods are used to create modules (correct units of implementation) such as objects and program packages, which is the module aimed, in SSM model, at developing conceptual models that can work in  the real world that are implemented and used to improve the problem situation.

In this case, there is communication problem with clients of each branch as they have their own way to communicate with clients. There is need of use of social media for their business as the clients asked for that as well. The investment in technology is need in terms of automating the cash register and appointment system as well need of social media and web presence as well will help their business to grow and works effectively. 

  1. References

Blum, B. (1994). A taxonomy of software development methods. Communications of the ACM. 37.

Brooks I, Weatherston J and Wilkinson G (2010) Globalisation, challenges and changes. Pearson Education Catalogue. Pearson Education. Available at: (accessed 05/09/17).

Cunningham S., Silver J., & Craig D. (2016). YouTube, multichannel networks and the accelerated evolution of the new screen ecology. Convergence. 22, 376-391.

Dathan, B., & Ramnath, S. (2015). Object-Oriented Analysis, Design and Implementation [recurso electrónico] An Integrated Approach. Springer EBooks 2015 [Recurso Electrónico].

Davies, I., Green, P., Rosemann, M., Indulska, M., & Gallo, S. (2006). How do practitioners use conceptual modeling in practice? Data & Knowledge Engineering. 58, 358.

Deimler MRM (2016) Adaptability: The New Competitive Advantage. Harvard Business Review. Available at: (accessed 05/09/17).

Grikštaitė J., (2008) Business process modelling and simulation: advantages and disadvantages. Global Academic Society Journal: Social Science Insight 1(3): 4–14. Available at: (accessed 06/09/17).

Merchant M (2015) How social media is giving mainstream media a run for its money. DailyO – Opinion News & Analysis on Latest Breaking News India. Living Media India Limited. Available at: (accessed 05/09/17).

Papajorgji, P. J., Pinet, F., Guimarães, A. M., & Papathanasiou, J. (2016). Automated enterprise systems for maximizing business performance. A volume in the Advances in business information systems and analytics (ABISA)

Shen, H., Wall, B., Zaremba, M., Chen, Y., & Browne, J. (2004). Integration of business modelling methods for enterprise information system analysis and user requirements gathering. Computers In Industry. 54, 307-323.

Wang, L. (2006). Fuzzy systems and knowledge discovery: third international conference, FSKD 2006, Xi’an, China, September 24-28, 2006 : proceedings. Berlin, Springer.

Wilson, B., & Van Haperen, K. (2015). Soft systems thinking, methodology and the management of change. London, Palgrave Macmillan Education.

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