i) The destination of the output.
- External outputs require careful consideration as they project the image of the company to customers.
- Some external outputs may have to match fixed criteria by law, e.g. tax returns.
- Hard copies may be required, e.g. invoices and chouse.
- Internal documents may require a computerized response.
ii) The format of the output.
- Derived items such as totals may be required.
- Decimal points and suppression of leading zeros may be required, e.g. currency.
iii) The flow of output.
- A report may be required at regular intervals, e.g. at the end of a month.
- A report may be required on demand, possibly within a few seconds.
- User requirements play a large part in determining this but the designer needs some Influence and foresight, e.g. if the user wants a very large report instantly.
- Volume and expected response times are important and need to be balanced.
iv) The choice of output media.
This will be influenced by a number of factors including:-
- Speed of required response.
- The need for hard copy plus the quality and volume of copies.
- User location – if external how are they able to receive the data.
- Volumes – is it possible to transmit to online terminals if large volumes.
- End destination – electronic transmission is best for other computer systems.
- Available hardware and software may place limitations on the available output methods.