Introduction to Operations Management
Course Co-ordinator: Marta Zorzini
Lecturer: Marta Zorzini (A63a, firstname.lastname@example.org)
Course Website: https://mle.lancs.ac.uk/course/view.php?id=911
Pre-requisites: MSCI 100/110/101 or equivalent. May not be combined with MSCI 102.
Term Taught: Michaelmas
Contact time: 20 lecture hours, 8 seminar hours
Why take this course?
Operations Management is the core managerial discipline in all kinds of operation - from private sector manufacturing through to public sector services. It is about the human capacity to organise all of the operations that underpin the modern world: transportation, the generation of energy, retailing, the production of goods, the provision of medical and educational services and so on. Indeed, few activities have as much impact on the quality of our lives. Even if you are not planning on a career in the operations area, you will likely be interfacing with people who are. Therefore, having a solid understanding of the role of operations in an organization can be of substantial benefit to you.
Part of Operations Management is analytical: being able to map, measure and understand operations problems - such as congestion, error and failure. Part of it is constructive: being able to design processes and put together plans. The course reflects this combination, and includes both qualitative and quantitative methods.
The first part of the course is focused on designing operations and includes topics such as process design and layout decisions. The topics covered in the rest of the module focus on managing operations including inventory planning and control and quality management.
By the end of the course you should be able to:
- Apply basic planning and analysis techniques to particular cases
- Identify different kinds of operations and predict their attributes
- Understand operations problems and find improvement strategies
The module will combine theory and practical application through a mix of lectures and tutorials. There will be two lecture slots per week, making 20 in total. In addition, there will be 8 tutorials running in Weeks 3-10 of the Michaelmas term. Lectures will be used to explain the material and attendance is extremely important. The tutorials will be used to work through the answers to case problems based on the lecture contents. The webboard will be used to distribute all materials for the course. It is compulsory to attend the tutorials and attendance will be recorded each week.
Outline Lecture Plan
Week 1: Introduction; Role and Characteristics of Operations
Week 2: Operations Strategy and Objectives; The Design of Operations I (Location)
Week 3: The Design of Operations II (Process, Timing and Layout)
Week 4: Capacity Management
Week 5: Process Flows and Lean Operations
Week 6: Inventory Management
Week 7: Material Requirements Planning (MRP) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems
Week 8: Project Planning and Control
Week 9: Quality Management
Week 10: Supply Chain Management
Tutorials will take place in Weeks 3-10.
There will be two assessments:
- A piece of group coursework, counting for 50% of the total grade for the course.
- A closed book examination, counting for 50%.
The examination will consist of one paper of two hours in duration and will be closed book format. A formula sheet will be provided for the the exam and a copy will be posted on the webboard.
The total workload for the course will be about 100 hours. The lectures and tutorials are 28 hours of this and the workload also includes time to: prepare for the tutorials; complete the coursework assessment; and, prepare for the examination.
I hope that you enjoy the course and I welcome feedback informally or via course reps.
Reading and Lecture Notes
Handouts for each lecture will be posted to Moodle 24 hours in advance.
The main course text is: Slack, N., Chambers, S., and Johnston, R. (eds.), Operations Management, 6th Edition, Prentice-Hall. You will need to have regular access to the course text for the set reading, the set cases, and the further development of your understanding.
Another useful resource is: Hill, A., and Hill, T., Essential Operations Management, Palgrave Macmillan. Details on further specialised readings will be provided during the course.
The Management Science Department undergraduate secretary is based in A68, Management School. Her office hours are 10 - 12 and 2.30 - 4.30.
There is a departmental webboard with useful information for students on all MSCI courses at: https://mle.lancs.ac.uk/course/view.php?id=2335
You are advised to take note of the warnings about late work, plagiarism and collusion. If you are unsure of the meaning of these terms, you should read the department's teaching code of practice, which can be found on the FAQ board.
We hope that you enjoy the course and we welcome feedback informally or via course reps.