Ssm is a qualitative methodology

Table of contents


Soft Systems Methodology


Soft systems methodological analysis ( SSM ) is a systemic attack for covering with real-world job state of affairss. Peter Checkland and his co-workers developed soft systems methodological analysis from system theory at Lancaster University in the United Kingdom. SSM is a qualitative methodological analysis and was developed utilizing action research so that it is besides treated as a theoretical methodological analysis.

The bosom of SSM is a comparing between the universe as it is, and some theoretical accounts of the universe as it might be.Out of this comparing originate a better apprehension of the universe ( “research” ) , and some thoughts for betterment ( “action” ) . ( See Figure 1 )

Use of SSM

Initially, the systems can be divided into two facets: proficient and human activity systems. However, human activity systems are much harder to pattern. The people ‘s place, people ‘s action and their relationship are involved. Therefore, it is more complex and mutable. Soft Systems Methodology places an accent on human activity systems.

Furthermore, SSM is peculiarly used at the analysis phase of developing information systems. It is non a methodological analysis to cover all phases of the systems development life rhythm ( SDLC ) . However, SSM is extraordinary good at elaborating political and soft, people-oriented issues. Furthermore, it refers to job state of affairs instead than jobs.

lAny composite, organisational, ill-structured, fuzzed, soft, and dynamic job state of affairs

The 7-Step Description

1 The job state of affairs: unstructured

The purpose of first measure is to understand the job state of affairs and addition as many different positions as possible.

2The job state of affairs: expressed

Then is this phase, the research worker produces a elaborate presentation, a “rich picture” , of the state of affairs. Rich pictures show stakeholders, their duty, cardinal interactions, struggles, political issues and concerns. This measure is frequently done graphically.

3Root definitions of relevant systems

After that, the root definitions of relevant systems are identified. Root definitions are intended to depict both political and personal premises.

The root definition is frequently produced by CATWOE checklist in order to do certain all of import points are included.

  • Client ( people who affected by the system )
  • Actor ( people who convert inputs to end products )
  • Transformation ( the alterations that take topographic point )
  • Weltanschauung ( the relevant universe position or premises )
  • Owner ( people who has the power )
  • Environment ( the wider system or restraints )

4Building conceptual theoretical accounts

This measure is to pull conceptual theoretical accounts utilizing the root definition. A conceptual theoretical account exhibits the activities of the systems that represented in the root definition.

5Comparing conceptual theoretical accounts with world

Compare and contrast the conceptual theoretical account with the rich image is considered in this measure. The purpose of is to look into the apprehension is right and whether the conceptual theoretical account can dress the job struggles.

6Assess whether the alterations are executable and desirable

After comparing, suggested alterations are identified and evaluated.Those alterations can probably to change in desirableness and feasibleness:

Desirability: Does it better technically?

Feasible: Does it suit the civilization?

7Action to better the job state of affairs

The recommendation will set into pattern.

Analysis the Case


Births, deceases and matrimonies ( BDM ) in Salford Council has a long history. BDM office provides services such as registry a birth, decease or matrimony certifications, and aid with following household braid. As the services are more and more popular, the Salford Online Archive and Retrieval system ( SOLAR ) is introduced.

Current Existing Problem

  • BDM staff reported trouble in covering with the clients during peek times.
  • Long waiting lines developed at the response desk and the other service centres during popular times.
  • Conflicts between the clients and staff happened.
  • The contrasting demands of two different clients groups are hard to manage at the same time.

Reasons why SSM is Appropriate

There are five major grounds why SSM is appropriate.

First of wholly, the jobs of BDM office are decidedly organisational, ill-structured jobs. Soft Systems Methodology focuses on the human activities systems. And it is good at clear uping political and soft, people-oriented issues.

After that, there are many different positions of the systems their demand in BDM state of affairss. SSM is besides such a methodological analysis that can cover with complex organisational and political job state of affairss where those involved lack a common understanding good.

Additionally, the assorted facets of the jobs are extremely interrelated in the state of affairs of BDM. So if alteration one facet is likely to hold a enormous impact on other facets. As a systemic methodological analysis, SSM is helpful to develop such a moderately holistically understanding of the correlativities of the assorted facets of the job state of affairs.

Furthermore, the intent of SSM is to transport out betterments in a state of affairs perceived as debatable. Meanwhile, SSM does non try to work out ‘the job ‘ but to ease a acquisition procedure which allows its users to bit by bit develop a more comprehensive apprehension of the state of affairs under survey. As a consequence, stakeholders are more likely to make understandings about what alterations in the state of affairs the involved parties can populate with.

Finally, SSM uses a set of specific techniques and strict tools to see a “messy” job.

Techniques contains… …

Application of SSM

Phase 1 and 2

In order to develop rich image of this instance, it is critical to derive as many different positions as possible.The stakeholders consist of clients, BDM Office staff, directors of the BDM Office, the possible spouses and the advisers of Salford City council.

  • Client: We want to bask quality service and support.
  • BDM Office staff: We were enthusiastic about the proviso of the call Centre services because it could liberate up the specializer resources, cut downing force per unit area and assisting to cut down the waiting clip for clients.
  • Directors: We concerned on the current bing jobs and we can merely work out these jobs every bit shortly as possible.
  • Potential spouses: We are interested in the proposals made by advisers which can do the populace services to be organized.
  • Advisers: We concerned on more incorporate attack for future service development which can do the public service organized.

Phase 3

After set uping rich image, root definitions of two relevant systems in phase 3 should be considered. The well-known CATWOE checklist will be used to place cardinal elements of the root definition.

Phase 4

Once the root definitions have been established, conceptual theoretical accounts that describe the activities should be conducted at phase 4. Therefore, the root definition of clients will be used to develop the conceptual theoretical account.

Phase 5

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