System (1) – (Engineering)
A system is a collection of components organized to accomplish a specific function or set of functions (IEEE, 1990).
System (2) – (Organisatie en management)
A system is as a network of interdependent components that work together to try to accomplish the aim of the system (Deming, 2014).
The aim for any system should be that everybody gains, not one part of the system at the expense of any other. In a business context this includes shareholders, customers, suppliers, employees, the community and the environment. Dr. Deming used the analogy of an orchestra to illustrate the concept of a system, “An orchestra is judged by listeners, not so much by illustrious players, but by the way they work together. The conductor, as manager, begets cooperation between the players, as a system, every player to support the others. There are other aims for an orchestra, such as joy in work for the players and the conductor.”
Because a system is a whole that cannot be divided into independent parts, its performance is never equal to the sum of the actions of its parts taken separately; it is a function of their interactions. – Russell Ackof