The 21st century has brought about several improvements in business strategies and operations. Most businesses have realized that to be very effective in their given industry the internal operations of such businesses have to be to the highest level of standardized efficiency (Wang et al 2010). These busineses have also realized that the effective management of the systems and daily operations of the organisation would facilitate organisational productivity and result in maximization of profit. According to lohman et al (2004), it essential that 21st century businesses strive to get an effective competitive advantage and attain relevant marketshare to make profit. An effective systems and operations management strategy will go a long way in helping an organisation achieve maximum productivity. Systems and operations management can be described as organisations in built mechanism of building, structuring and designing an effective system of organising organisations daily operations Letza (1996). Chase and Jacobs (2001) posit that systems and operations management is an integral process of converting an organisations internal input (in form of material, human resources / energy) into output ( in terms of Goods and services). In other words, systems and operations management involves the effective management of all of organisations resources that gear toward the production and distribution of the organisations goods and services to the end consumer. InputsOperations Function
Above is a graphical representation of the systems and operations management process. Operations management revolves around one major function; provision of the firms product or service to the end consumer. The planning and controlling of all the organizations operations and activities are to meet this end (provision of goods and services) (Epstien and Manzoni 1998). An operations management strategy that does not result in production of goods is seen as an ineffective system. Wang et al (2010) believes that organizations should create parameters for designing a system and operations management function; production and provision of goods and services to the consumer being the most important parameter. However, it is also essential to note that organizations should strive and design a operations management system that would be best fit for the organizations idiosyncrasies and unique management style. This is to ensure that all the systems (departments and resources) in the organization have an effective blend and achieve desired harmony (Okkonen 2007). Okkonen believes that it is very vital that an organization builds its operations management strategy around the existing nature of the internal operations of the organization rather than a pre –intended nature which the organization wants to introduce. This is because, in order to maximize profit and ensure productivity of and from resources the systems and operations management strategy must be tailored around the strengths of the existing nature of an organizations internal operations and resources. Kekkonen ( 2007) went further to identify three key elements of Operations management; Designing the system
Planning the system
Managing the system
Designing the System:
this stage of operations manangement involves product development. It involves establishing and identifying the essential characteristics and unique features of the product or service that is in the pipe line or is intended for development. The system being designed has to be derived from the essential customer needs and the organizations existing structure. roduct design is a critical task because it determines the characteristics and features of the product, as well as how the product functions. Product design determines a product's cost and quality, as well as its features and performance. These are important factors on which customers make purchasing decisions. Planning the System...