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Operations Management.

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Coursework of Operations Management MSc in Management Summary In this article, three operations management related cases are studied and analysed. The writer compares and contrasts similarities and differences in these cases in the following aspects: the transformation process model, types of operations, the objectives of operations. By looking into more detailed problems in each case, those more complex items such as quality improvement, process planning, capacity planning, scheduling/loading, are also illustrated. And finally, some key factors concerned with operations improvement and strategy are given to the cases. Operations management is the term used for the activities, decisions and responsibilities of operations managers who manage the production and delivery of products and services. Because the functions, characteristics are different in various companies, operations management themes will not always be the same in those societies. In the cases we studied, for example, Executive Holloware and London Zoo have to tackle the biggest problem of quality, while Oilpartz Ltd (in the case of I'll phone you back) is mostly concentrating on the capacity planning. Before we go deeper into those problems, let's first look at the basic similarities and differences in those companies. The transformation process model All operations conform a general model of INPUT-TRANSFORMATION-OUTPUT, however, every operation has its specific items. Executive Holloware and Oilpartz Ltd process materials because they are transforming their physical properties, unlike them, London Zoo processes customers, because they are concerned with transforming their psychological state, providing them with entertainment and education. Those inputs are different too. For the transformed resource, known as resources that are treated, transformed or converted, Executive Holloware and Oilpartz Ltd transfer raw materials, while London Zoo transfers customers. For the transforming resources, known as resources that act upon the transformed resources, three companies all need adequate and qualified buildings, labour, information, but animals are unique to London Zoo, while machineries are unique to Executive Holloware and Oilpartz Ltd. ...read more.


The biggest problem they are facing is quality. There's 5% of return of products from the retailers, and 5% of rejected from the final inspection stage in Executive Holloware. London Zoo is totally not sure how customers judge the quality of the service they provide. When we are diagnosing quality problems, we first should check whether the product or service meet the expectations of customers, and whether there's gap between the customers' perceptions of the product or service and their expectations of it. If the latter exits, there must be other gaps elsewhere. They are: Gap1: The customer's specification-operation's specification gap Gap2: The concept-specification gap Gap3: The quality specification-actual quality gap Gap4: The actual quality-communicated image gap In Executive Holloware, there's an obvious gap between quality specification and actual quality. We can see that there is high frequency of scratches and bruises in the assembly line, even the final goods which arrive to the retailers exit the same problem. They don't have a clear definition of what is scratches and bruises, what is the standard of semi-finished and finished goods. The internal quality services are rather poor, workers don't care what kind of semi-finished goods they are 'throwing' to the next stage. Meanwhile, by doing the questionnaire, London Zoo is trying to find out the gap between service concept and the way the organization has specified the quality of the service internally, the gap between the customer's specification and operation's specification of quality. Quality planning and controlling Quality planning and controlling can be divided into six steps: Step1: Define the quality characteristics of the product or service. Step2: Decide how to measure each quality characteristic Step3: Set quality standards for each quality characteristic. Step4: Control quality against those standards. Step5: Find and correct causes of poor quality. Step6: Continue to make improvements. Step1: Define the quality characteristics of the product or service. Executive Holloware's internal quality assurance department only inspect the final goods in the daily work, however, those quality problems lie in each step. ...read more.


However, since they have two turning machines, and considering the bunching of load, things may be different. Step2: Identify the alternative capacity plans. London Zoo may chase the demand plan in the way of varying the size of the workforce or using part-time staff in order to meet the fluctuated demand, or they can manage demand like giving special offers in those off-peak time, etc. Without consider the Nitro order and working overtime, we first design the Gantt chart ( Appendix 1) in three ways, they are * Due date (DD) * First come, first served (FCFS) * Longest operation time first (LOT) In the three ways, bunching of load in turning process are all considered, since the deliver date of Gamma Gases and Delta Engineering are quite late, the bottle neck will be on Alpha Oil and BP. But in the last two ways, products of AL are first to be produced, that's why they can't deliver the goods to BP on time. When we see that DD is efficient, we then consider of adding the demand of Nitro Chemical, fortunately, the work can be done on time. Step3: Choose the most appropriate capacity plan. Economically, using part-time staff and facilities, managing demand in London Zoo will be better ways. And for Olipartz Ltd, producing in the sequence of Due Date will solve all the problems, thus the company will deliver the goods to all the customers without working overtime and any delay. The cost is controlled, profit is made, performance objectives are reached. * Operations improvement Since the customers' expectations are changing all the time, operations improvement will thus never stop. For those three companies, after they solve the urgent problems, they will have to look back again the performance measurement. Sometimes, they will have to find new performance standards and make continuous improvements or breakthrough improvement. The operation managers have to do the "trade-off" all the time. ...read more.

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