To store information, an AIS must have a database structure such as structured query language (SQL), a computer language commonly used for databases. The AIS will also need various input screens for the different types of system users and data entry, as well as different output formats to meet the needs of different users and various types of information.
The data contained in an AIS is all the financial information pertinent to the organization's business practices. Any business data that impact the company's finances should go into an AIS.
The type of data included in an AIS will depend on the nature of the business, but it may consist of the following:
Customer billing statements
Sales analysis reports
This data can then be used to prepare accounting statements and reports, such as accounts receivable aging, depreciation/amortization schedules, trial balance, profit and loss, and so on. Having all this data in one place—in the AIS—facilitates a business's record-keeping, reporting, analysis, auditing, and decision-making activities. For the data to be useful, it must be complete, correct and relevant.
On the other hand, examples of data that would not go into an AIS include memos, correspondence, presentations, and manuals. These documents might have a tangential relationship to the company's finances, but, excluding the standard footnotes, they are not really part of the company's financial record-keeping.