There are lots of decision making software programs available, some are for personal use but most are for business use. Using computers enables the decision maker to analyze a lot of data very quickly. This means they can also make bigger mistakes much faster!
What I mean is that the computer will only do as it is told. The user inputs the data, and the quality of this data will determine the quality of the results. Remember, even with software decision making, YOU are still making the decision...
Decision making software is a decision analysis tool that allow the user to clarify and express the situation, analyze the alternatives and represent the information in a way that provides insight for all those involved. It is a subgroup of decision support systems.
The process of choosing between multiple (potentially) conflicting criteria is called multiple criteria decision analysis and different software packages use different methods for this.
For example, the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) breaks the decision down into sub-sections which are studied independently before putting all the information back together again. The Analytic Network Process (ANP) differs in that it allows for the comparison of the sub-sections in a network.
Multi-Attribute Utility Theory (MAUT) uses mathematical models to allow direct comparison of diverse criteria. (Yep, we can even compare apples with oranges with the right model!) Potentially All Pairwise RanKings of all possible Alternatives (PAPRIKA) involves comparing each option to every other option with respect to certain criteria, then taking the result of these pairings and coming up with an overall best.
Note that in some of these processes human preferences are required...!
The obvious benefits include the ability to manipulate large amounts of data very quickly, changing scope, filters and parameters with instant results. Many of the programmes will also allow you to present the information and the results in many formats, which can be useful for providing multiple perspectives.
The ability to generate interactive, web-based results can be of value to organizations, along with the (advertised!) ability to quantify risk.
The downside, of course, is garbage in, garbage out. The final decision will only be as good as the information that's been put into the system. And when there are humans involved, a decision will not be completely objective. Human bias, preference, judgment and opinion can never be completely removed.
A factor that often determines if software is available to individuals or companies is the price, and some of these are quite expensive. But first...
It can be utilized for relatively simple decisions as well as for complex ones. It has even been used for predicting sports results!
It's free, so have a go yourself...
Any spreadsheet program can also be used as decision making software. They allow for the rapid sorting and analysis of information and can be useful for correlating large amounts of data. They can also easily be utilized for generating decision matrix diagrams.
And some decision making software comes in the form of add-ons for spreadsheets.
The one thing they all have in common is you! Remember that YOU are making the decision, so you may as well learn how to make good ones...!
Do you have favorite decision making software? Something that you recommend? Share your experience with it here...
Or have you developed a piece of software you want to tell the world about? Here's your opportunity!
If you have found something that you find really useful, or you have some software that you rave about already, let even more people know about it here!
If you have developed your own decision making software, this is your chance to get it out in the world.
Some rules for 'advertising' your own software.
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Decision Making Wheel
The Decision Making Wheel is the best way to make decisions when you don't want to, or when it is hard to choose from similar options. Use built-in decision …
Decision Making Helper Not rated yet
Very easy to use decision making software. Decision Making Helper provides great support in making decisions in private as well as business matters. Especially …
Minddecider Not rated yet
Decision making process became crucial for the work I do (I'm a Sales Manager), so, for the last year I use the software called Minddecider. It is really …
Deesidar Decision Making Software Not rated yet
Simple to use. It provides you template questions and template criteria. You just need to order the criteria. The downside is you can't save your …