The results obtained from the evaluation process help the organization to determine whether its information systems are effective and efficient or otherwise. The process of monitoring, evaluating, and modifying of existing information systems to make required or desirable improvements may be termed as System Maintenance.
System maintenance is an ongoing activity, which covers a wide variety of activities, including removing program and design errors, updating documentation and test data and updating user support. For the purpose of convenience, maintenance may be categorized into three classes, namely:
i) Corrective Maintenance: This type of maintenance implies removing errors in a program, which might have crept in the system due to faulty design or wrong assumptions. Thus, in corrective maintenance, processing or performance failures are repaired.
ii) Adaptive Maintenance: In adaptive maintenance, program functions are changed to enable the information system to satisfy the information needs of the user. This type of maintenance may become necessary because of organizational changes which may include:
a) Change in the organizational procedures,
b) Change in organizational objectives, goals, policies, etc.
c) Change in forms,
d) Change in information needs of managers.
e) Change in system controls and security needs, etc.
iii)Perfective Maintenance: Perfective maintenance means adding new programs or modifying the existing programs to enhance the performance of the information system. This type of maintenance undertaken to respond to user’s additional needs which may be due to the changes within or outside of the organization. Outside changes are primarily environmental changes, which may in the absence of system maintenance, render the information system ineffective and inefficient. These environmental changes include:
a) Changes in governmental policies, laws, etc.,
b) Economic and competitive conditions, and
c) New technology.