Timeliness means that information must reach the recipients within the prescribed time frame. Timely information can ensure correct executive action at an early stage. The characteristic of timeliness, to be effective, should also include current information.
Accuracy is another key-attribute of management information. It means that information is free from mistakes and errors, is clear and accurately reflects the meaning of data on which it is based. It conveys an accurate picture to the recipient, who may require a presentation in graphical form rather than tabular form.
Relevance is yet another key attribute of management information. Information is said to be relevant if it answers specifically for the recipient what, why, where, who and why? In other words, the MIS should serve reports to managers, which are useful, and the information helps them make decisions.
Adequacy means information must be sufficient in quantity. MIS must provide reports containing information, which is required in deciding processes of decision-making.
The information, which is provided to a manager, must be complete and should meet all his needs. Incomplete information may result in wrong decisions and thus may prove costly to the organization.
A report is said to be of good quality if it does not require further analysis by the recipient for decision-making. Thus the reports should be such that a manager does not waste any time on the processing of the report, rather he should be able to extract the required information directly.
7) Exception based.
Top managers need only exception reports regarding the performance of the organization. Exception reporting principle states that only those items of information, which will be of particular interest to a manager, are reported. This approach results in saving precious time of the top management and enables the managers to devote more time in pursuit of alternatives for the growth of the organization.
Quality of information refers to its fitness for use or its reliability. Some of the attributes of information which influence the quality of information are as follows: