Operations Management Written Assessment

Operations Management deals with the ways that for-profit, public body and voluntary organisations produce goods and services.  Using transformation processes, it converts input resources, including information, material and customers, by harnessing staff knowledge and facilities to meet external and internal customers' needs.  As such, though often not appreciated, it is present in every department of every organisation.

Operations management exists at three highly interdependent levels that inform each other:

  1. Corporate strategic level where senior managers decide the long-medium term purposes and objectives for the organisation as a whole.
  1. Operational level where middle level managers dissect corporate strategy into specific departmental or functional purposes and medium to short-term objectives and implement them.
  1. Supervisory management level where operational objectives are dissected into a vast number of tasks/activities that have short term to day-to-day time horizons.  They usually have complex interdependencies across multiple tasks, departments and external organisations.  Individual managers are usually responsible for a great number of tasks that are simultaneously in play.

Within levels 2 and 3, the vast majority of an organisation's resources, particularly its people, exist, hence the sources of its short and long term capabilities.  It is where competitive advantage and best practice performances can be achieved, provided the organisation is continuously adapting to the threats and opportunities of its external environment and continuously implementing improvements.  Hence, operations management is a core element of organisational activity that focuses on the operations objectives of speed, quality, dependability, flexibility and cost.

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