The routine decision making can be sub divided into different forms based on several variables that differentiate them; however, the two broad categories of decision making are programmed decisions and non-programmed decisions (O Brien, 1999).
A programmed decision is, simply put, a decision that has a fine structure and occurs rather frequently, with less exceptions. Such decisions are relatively easier to make as they follow a pretty standardized procedure; a simple example of the same can be answering a customer query or solving a customer query such as password retrieval. A non-programmed decision is exact complement of the former; non-programmed decisions are more about exceptional handling rather than routine work out, for such decisions, there is less structure of any formal procedures that would resolve the issue. Accordingly, the frequency of occurrence is lesser. Purchase of fixed asset, based on frequency of occurrence can be a non-programmed procedure but since the process of purchase is well defined, it does not qualify for the same. The purchase of a house or a television would be a rather non-programmed decision.
In this section, the steps for rational decision making are applied to the given case. ...
The case is the need for replacement of the photocopy machine, and the decision making process is to be applied for the purchase of this new equipment (Noorul Haq, 2007). For the decision making process to be successful, it should go by a procedure so that the defined procedure can undertake the different variables needed for an appropriate decision making. Following are the simple steps that are a part of the rational decision making process with brief elaboration (Davidson, 2006), alongside the three steps, their application for the given case is also briefed:
STEP I: Recognizing and defining the decision situation: It is essential for managers to recognize and define the need for the decision to be taken. There are certain underlying variables that define the need for the decision; these variables are indicators for the need of a decision. The decision situation has arisen; the photocopy machine needs to be replaced and a new equipment needs to be purchased. The need has arisen mainly due to the excess usage of the equipment in routine business operations.
STEP II: Identifying alternatives: Once the need for a decision is identified, alternate decisions available should be identified. Pertinent to this case, the alternatives available are the different models of the machine (that of course have varying functionalities) and the list of pre-selected vendors who sell these machines. Another form of alternative evaluation could have been evaluation of either purchase, rent or not buy at all. However, with the requirements that it caters to, it has become essentially important to buy one as it has a lot of usage in routine operations. Going to a near by shop could have been another way out, which is ruled out due to potential lose out of confidential