Highstone Electronics Inc.
Importance of effective operations management in achieving organizational objectives Operations management forms the heart of the organization as it controls the system of operations. According to Lowson (2002) operations management is concerned with the design, operation and improvement of the internal and external systems, resources and technologies that create and deliver the firms primary product and service combinations. The activities included within operations management are purchasing, distribution, product and process design and other external activities such as management of supply network. Operations management involves managing equipment, information, people, technology and other such resources of an organization. The main role of operations management is to orchestrate all the resources required to produce the final product. The responsibilities include designing the product, managing resources and deciding what resources are required, arranging schedules, equipment and facilities. Moreover, it includes management of inventory, controlling quality and designing the tasks required to produce the final product. To sum up, operations management is responsible for all aspects of the process of transforming inputs into outputs (Hillier, 2004). Operations management is critical to any organization as efficient operations management can lead a company to success whereas inefficient management could lead one to failure. In order for operations management to be successful, the process must be able to add value during the transformation process of inputs to outputs. The term value added is defined as the difference between the final value of the product and the values of all the inputs. The higher the value added for a product the more productive and successful a business is said to be. Activities that fail to add value to organizations products are considered to be a waste. Operations management includes recognizing these wasteful activities and culling them in order to save costs. In addition to, adding value organizational processes must also be efficient. Efficiency means performing operations well and at the lowest possible cost. Operations management must analyze all activities improving efficiency and eliminating ones that don’t add value. Efficiency can be improved by restricting processes, tasks and jobs in order to achieve the objectives with lower costs. Today’s business environment is more competitive than ever, and the role of operations management has become the focal point ofefforts to increase competitiveness by improving value added and efficiency. Highstone Electronics Inc. (HEL) makes effective use of its operations management by successfully managing its products. Product management includes a wide variety of management activities, for HEL this includes effectively managing its product line and inventory in order to process orders in the most efficient manner. The organization initially sold products through catalogues and maintained an inventory, processing orders within 48 hours. The organization is now planning on moving its operations online as well and has widened its product line. An increasing product line for the organization means that the organization will be catering to wider variety of customers. Moreover, online operations would mean that the organization would be serving customers world over. The internet provides business with viable opportunities to expand allowing flexibility and a wide market. However, delivering to that market within the promised time requires the organization to manage its operations effectively. Ensuring that orders are delivered to the consumers within the promised time is the job of operations management and this task is much more complicated than just catering to a local clientele. Evaluation of the success of existing operations management processes in meeting an organization’s overall strategic management objectives. Strategic...
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