Benefits of Process Design

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Midterm Paper:
Benefits of Process Design
Anna M
BUS 453A Operations Management
Warner Pacific College
January 3, 2012

Midterm Paper: Benefits of Process Design
Starting out this class, I did not know how much responsibility the Operations Manager truly has. Having to choose a topic to write about came down to picking one out of ten operations management decisions for me. The decisions include: design of goods and services, managing quality, process strategy, location strategy, layout strategy, human resources, supply-chain management, inventory management, scheduling, and maintenance. All those strategies are extremely important for virtually every business, but there is one strategy that stands out: the process strategy; more specifically process design. We see the beautiful building around the world as well as boats, cars, houses, etc. and the design is what makes a product or an organization stand out. In this paper we get to learn ways of benefiting from organizational process design if we think like the customer, departmental focus on specialization, opportunities for improvement, and why I believe it is not an easy task but a great deal of responsibility.

When selecting a process design there are a lot of decisions to make, strategies to apply, and things to consider in order to make the right decision. Managers often focus on the internal issues of the organization in which they forget to focus on the more important issues that harm the organization more. In order for a manager to be able to see outside the box, the manager of the organization should be able to think like the customer. A few examples include: browsing around the organization and looking at the product as a customer, and browsing on the company website, to get a feel of the true reality. This may open their mind to see and think more like a customer because the manager himself was able to be in customer’s shoes and experience what the customer experiences. This is an area where the organization is process focused because they are devoted to making low-volume, high-variety products that allow for customization. Some organization examples include hospitals, restaurants, and hotels (Heizer & Render, 2011. pp.252-253).

In order to have elegant design, the organization must first have healthy working relationships in all departments and in-between. When there are specific departments that focus on their part and responsibility, the organization then has the ability for continuous improvement. The organizations must continue to work toward specialization. It is important that each department specializes in what they are known for. An example would be having a service department at a dealership and parts department; the employees and managers should be able to provide service or parts and have knowledge of any possible issues, questions, and be up-to-date on all that they need to be for their specific department. Customers can be unpredictable at times and unhappy customers are an organization’s minuses; but they can also be used for improvement. That’s why when there is focus that comes with specialization it contributes to efficiency. Managers must focus on a limited number of activities, products, and technologies to do better than other organizations. In order to yield efficiency specialization, simplification, concentration, and focus would be required, which also contribute to building a core competence that yields market and financial success (Heizer & Render, 2011. p.259). When talking about focus it can be not only the customer, but depending on the organization, it could be a product, service, or technology.

The operations management has tools that help them stay organized. Whatever the focus is, if there is no organization, no particular structure, there will be no efficiency, therefore, no success. The tools include flowcharts – used to analyze movement of people or materials (some of the...
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