Module 12: Managing Processes
Putting It Together: Managing Processes
SynthesisIn this module you were given an overview of and insight into the world of operations management and the key role it plays in delivering high-quality goods and services to customers. We can sum up operations management by saying that it's the functional area within organizations that makes sure that the right customer gets the right product at the right time for the right price in a form that meets the customer's quality expectations. It's a pretty tall order, and it requires operations managers to be involved in every facet of the business process.
Regardless of how much market demand there is for a given product, good, or service, if the organization cannot consistently deliver it, then consumers will either find a substitute or simply do without. Consider the following examples, and you'll begin to register the impact of poor operations management:
Have you ever . . .
- Left a restaurant because the wait was too long or the service too slow?
- Returned an item to the store because it was defective or broke shortly after you bought it?
- Stayed in a hotel and vowed never to go there again because the hot water didn't work or the room wasn't clean?
- Attended a Thanksgiving dinner where the turkey was bone dry and the sweet potato pie was crunchy?
Doing something a little inefficiently one time is no big deal, but when you do something inefficiently over and over, hundreds or even millions of times per year, even little mistakes can add up to incredible waste. Mistakes in an operation that result in defective products, even if they represent only 1 percent of total output, can alienate millions of customers. Similarly, if poorly designed operations result in habitually serving customers late, a company will eventually lose customers to better-functioning competitors.
As you can see, breakdowns in operations management can be very disappointing to the consumer and costly to the organization!
SummaryIn this module you learned about how operations management contributes to organizational success in business. Below is a summary of the key points covered.
Operations ManagementOperations management is responsible for all the activities involved in transforming a concept into a finished product or service. Included in these activities are planning and controlling the systems that produce these goods and services.
Production ProcessesOperations management includes decisions about the way in which production will proceed. Common production processes include project-based, batch, mass, and continuous production.
The layout of a facility is most often determined by the product being manufactured. The four types of facility layouts are process, product, cellular, and fixed position.