Management Hints

Digital Systems and Information Technology

Digital technology provides a simple, efficient and cheap method for communicating with employees and customers. It also helps companies improve productivity and strengthen their brand image.

However, some studies question whether these technologies improve learning. To explore the topic, Pace University Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems surveyed students on their use of various digital tools.

Software Development

Digital information systems support the operations of a variety of industries. Software engineers write and test computer programs for these applications. They may use a number of different programming languages to create these applications and platforms. This includes programming in a web browser, as well as creating the back-end systems that keep operating systems running.

They may also focus on front-end systems that allow users to interact with software. This requires design skills that include visual aesthetics, functional layouts and platform compatibility. These designers may use programs like Java or Python, and they may specialize in areas such as e-commerce, database development or cloud computing.

A significant part of this work involves developing a detailed Software Requirements Document (SRS) and Data Driven Specification (DDS). During this phase, software engineers identify what an application needs to do its job. They then translate the requirements into a coded product that goes through rigorous testing before deployment. This step is typically automated but may require manual approvals in some regulated industries.

Hardware Development

Creating hardware products can be much more challenging than developing software. There are a number of different areas that need to be addressed, from product standards and manufacturing process feasibility to end-of-life protocols. Additionally, hardware is more difficult to test and modify mid-development. As a result, major changes in hardware can come at a cost both in terms of sunk costs and shipping schedules.

Hardware development engineers are responsible for the design, construction and testing of computer hardware. They use their skills in a wide range of applications, from medical equipment to computers. They also work on computer components that enable embedded software engineering in non-computer devices.

Hardware development often requires a greater degree of coordination with multiple suppliers and vendors than software projects, and the number of components can be more complex, leading to multiple bills of material (BOMs). Agile methodologies such as Scrum and Kanban have been adapted for hardware development teams to help compress project durations and improve quality.


Information systems are the hardware and software components, processes and people that interact to capture, store, process, manipulate, organise and display data. These systems vary in purpose from supporting a not-for-profit organisation’s counselling services to helping an environmental organization track endangered fauna.

These systems are linked together using networks which allow data to be transferred quickly and securely on a large scale. Networking is also used to protect the integrity of data by preventing hackers from gaining access to personal or company information and taking advantage of it for financial gain (ransomware, identity theft and denial-of-service attacks are just a few examples). Trained computer networking specialists are needed to monitor and maintain these networks. This includes assessing current technology use and needs, recommending new hardware and software solutions, as well as maintaining the existing infrastructure. The responsibilities of these professionals are incredibly important and are an integral part of any business. The technology landscape is rapidly evolving and companies need skilled workers to help navigate the changes.


Digital systems security experts keep businesses’ information safe from cybercrime and other elements that could potentially compromise the integrity of important business data. They use a variety of tools to monitor and analyze information systems, identify potential vulnerabilities and develop countermeasures.

Telecommunication developments include mobile signature technology that uses a SIM card to create a legally binding digital signatory, and security-by-design where the software is designed from the ground up with security as an integral component. Attackers on information systems are a varied lot, from thrill seekers to vandals to activists and criminals seeking financial gain, with state-sponsored attackers becoming increasingly common.

Managing a business’s technology infrastructure requires a skilled team of professionals that can quickly identify and implement new digital systems and software. As the demand for qualified cybersecurity specialists continues to grow, a career in digital systems security is a smart choice for future-proofing your skill set. It is also a highly transferable role across sectors.