Information Technology VS Information System!

Difference between Information Technology and Information System

There are a lot of book and research that have defined the meaning of Information Technology and Information System. For Example:
J.L.Whitten et al (2007) in the “Systems Analysis and Design Method” book. [6]
Information Technology is a contemporary term that describes the combination of computer technology with telecommunication technology (data, image, and voice networks).
Information System is an arrangement of people, data, process, communication and information technology that interact to support and improve day to day operations in business, as well as support the problem solving and decision making needs of management and users.
Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) [7] defined IT and IS as:
Information Technology: “The use of technology for the storage, communication or processing of information. The technology typically includes computers, telecommunications, applications and other software. The information may include business data, voice, images, video, etc. Information technology is often used to support business processes through IT service”
Information System: “A set of tools, data and information that is used to support a process or function. For Example, include the availability management information system and the supplier and contract management information system”
 Encyclopedia Britannica [8] also give the definition for both IT and IS
“Information Technology is the technology involving the development, maintenance, and use of computer systems, software, and networks for the processing and distribution of data”
“Information System is an integrated set of components for collecting, storing, and processing data and for delivering information, knowledge, and digital products. Business firms and other organizations rely on information systems to carry out and manage their operations, interact with their customers and suppliers, and compete in the marketplace.”
Kenneth C. Laudon,Jane P. Laudon (2012) in “Management Information Systems” book [9]
“Information technology (IT) consists of all the hardware and software that a firm needs to use in order to achieve its business objectives. This includes not only computer machines, storage devices, and handheld mobile devices, but also software.”
“Information system can be defined technically as a set of interrelated components that collect (or retrieve), process, store, and distribute information to support decision making and control in an organization. In addition to supporting decision making, coordination, and control, information systems may also help managers and workers analyze problems, visualize complex subjects, and create new products.”
Kroenke, David (2012) in “Experience MIS” book [10].
Information technology (IT)refers to the products, methods, inventions, and standards that are used for the purpose of producing information. IT pertains to the hardware, software, and data components.
“Information system (IS) is an assembly of hardware, software, data, procedures, and people who produces information.”
In conclusion, from the definitions of IT and IS above. IT and IS have a very supporting relationship for each other. IT is focus only for technological and infrastructure components. For Example, consist of computer hardware, software, data storage, and data communication, etc. The IS is focusing on a system to finish some tasks starting from collecting data, transform data in to information, store information for further usage, and distribute that information to support people at different level in organization.
An IT is essential component for an IS but IT is not an IS. IS need more factors to produces useful information for each organization such as people, business driven, methodologies, and IT. For example, The Management Information System from two companies may have completely different processes from each other because of different in people, business process, etc. They may have the similar IT infrastructure. For instance, they may use Windows 7 as operating system, same CPU speed, and same Internet connection speed, but if we focus at IS’s processes. It became completely different for both organizations.
So I proposed that:    
Information Technology is everything that related with computer systems such as hardware, software, data communication, etc. IT focuses only in technological and infrastructure part.              
Information System is a combination of Information Technology, people, business, methodology, etc. The goal of Information System is to produce useful Information for supporting organization in different level, to do that, Information System need to collect, transform, storage, and distribute information by the power of Information Technology.   


Figure 1. Show components of Information System.
1.   Elaine D. Seeman, Margaret O’Hara, (2006) “Customer relationship management in higher education: Using information systems to improve the student-school relationship”,Campus-Wide Information Systems, Vol. 23 Iss: 1, pp.24 – 34
2.   NC Community Colleges website. Retrieved 04 18, 2012, from
3.   Göran Svensson, Greg Wood, (2007) “Are university students really customers? When illusion may lead to delusion for all!”, International Journal of Educational Management, Vol. 21 Issue 1, pp.17 – 28
4.   Treena Gillespie Finney, R. Zachary Finney, (2010) “Are students their universities’ customers? An exploratory study”, Education + Training, Vol. 52 Iss: 4, pp.276 – 291
5.   Nicholas G. Carr,(2003) “IT Doesn’t Matter”, Harvard Business Review, May 2003, pp 3-11
6.   J.L.Whitten, L.D.Bentley, & K.C.Dittman, Systems Analysis and Design Method, 7th edition, New York: McGraw-Hill, 2007.
7.   Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) Glossaries. Retrieved 04 22, 2012 from
8.   Britannica Encyclopedia. Retrieved 04 22, 2012 from
9.   Kenneth C. Laudon,Jane P. Laudon. (2012). Management Information Systems MANAGING THE DIGITAL FIRM 12 th Edition. New york: Pearson Prentice Hall.

Kroenke, David. Experiencing MIS, 3rd edition, New 


  1. Anonymous November 28, 2012
  2. Charnsak December 18, 2012

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