Operations Management (OM) is a broad area of research. It consists of traditional research areas, such as inventory management, and emerging trends like consumer-based revenue management. The OM literature is huge and spans more than 5 decades of an exciting blend of theory and application. In recent years, there has been an increasing awareness among large corporations and academic institutes of the potential of high quality theoretical and applied OM research in improving fundamental business processes. Undoubtedly, operational problems can affect stock prices and shareholder wealth and the value of an effective operations strategy is tremendous. The key question is then how to determine the effective operations strategy which allows firms to significantly increase the likelihood of success, and what are the principles, frameworks, and processes that companies can follow to determine such a strategy?
The purpose of this course is to introduce students to some of the fundamental aspects of OM. These aspects include inventory management, facility location planning, capacity management, risk mitigation, pricing, etc. More specifically, the course will: Make students conversant in the language of OM and expand their knowledge in this field. Help students develop modeling skills and provide them concepts and problem-solving tools, which are applicable to OM. We will cover a broad range of mathematical and analytical techniques in both traditional application domains, such as inventory control, capacity and transportation planning, and emerging application domains, such as product assortment. Give students 'hands-on' feel of how OM decisions are made in practice and why they are so complex.
Lectures: 2 March 2020 - 26 March 2020
Exam: 6 April 2020
Mode of instruction
The course will be a mix of in-class lectures, online lectures, case discussions and computerized applications. Students are expected to prepare all the pre-assigned readings and be active and effective participants during the class. Class attendance is mandatory. If you have to miss a class, please notify the coordinator Lisa Fillekes (firstname.lastname@example.org) in advance, with the reason for your absence.
To help me and your fellow-students to learn your name quickly, please always put a name card in front of you.
Online lectures allow students with diverse backgrounds to learn in their own pace. Students are required to watch the lecture videos and finish corresponding exercises before the in-class lectures.
A case study requires a very thorough preparation. You are expected to have read every case in detail, and have prepared for the accompanying questions, before coming to class. In a case session, one or more students will be asked to begin the discussion of a selected topic. You should sit together with your group members and join the discussion as a group. In total, there are four case sessions, after each session, a score for your participation in the discussion will be collected and added to one of your group assignments as a bonus. This score is calculated based on two criteria: 1) whether your opinions are constructive and original; and 2) whether most of the group members have contributed to the discussion.
Computerized Beer Game
The beer game is an experiential learning business simulation game created by a group of professors at MIT Sloan School of Management in early 1960s to demonstrate a number of key principles of supply chain management. The game is played by teams of at least four players, often in heated competition, and takes at least one hour to complete. The purpose of the game is to understand the distribution side dynamics of a multi-echelon supply chain used to distribute a single item, in this case, cases of beer.
Excel (with solver) spreadsheets
8 x 2 hour lectures
Final 3 hour exam
There are three individual assignments and two group assignments. For all individual assignments, no collaboration is allowed. For group assignments, you should only collaborate within your group. All assignments should be submitted in electronic copy to Blackboard at the specified time and date. Pay attention to the following submission deadlines: Individual assignment 1, due by 15:00 Mar. 18th Individual assignment 2, due by 15:00 Mar. 21th Individual assignment 3, due by 15:00 Apr. 11th Group assignment 1, due by 23:59 Apr. 1st Group assignment 2, due by 23:59 Apr. 19th
Individual Assignment Policy Pass or Fail: you get a Pass (full grade) when you complete every question and submit the assignment. If you have difficulties answering certain questions, write down your thoughts, instead of leaving them out. Among the three individual assignments, you are allowed one chance of late submission with a delay of maximal 24 hours. Beyond that, late submission will not be accepted.
Group Assignment Policy Each member needs to complete a peer evaluation form independently. Your individual score for a group assignment is calculated based on the evaluations. For example, in a group of 4 students, the maximal score you can get from three evaluations is 72. If you received x, and the score of your group assignment is y. Your individual score for this group assignment is (x*y)/72. It is your own responsibility to submit the evaluation on time (same deadline as the corresponding GA). If you forgot to submit, you receive 0 for this assignment and it will not influence other group members’ scores.
In addition to the take-home assignments, there is a closed-book mid-term exam based on the content of Lecture 3 and 4. This mid-term exam will take place during Lecture 6.
There will be a closed-book exam. The exam covers all the lectures (both online and in-class), in-class discussions, assignments, case studies, and readings.
Your final grade will be determined according to the following components (see the table below). Your final score needs to be at least 5.5 (on a scale of 10) in order to pass the course. In addition, you need to have at least 50% of the points in each component to pass the course. This means, for instance, you could pass the course only if you score at least 5 in the exam (on a scale of 10). If you failed the course, you can attend the re-sit. The re-sit is still a closed-book exam and accounts for 40% of your final grade (i.e., replacing your previous exam score). If you would like to re-take any other component, such as the mid-term exam, you can do so in the next semester.
Individual assignment (x3) 15
Group assignment (x2) 20
Mid-term exam 20
Presentation on Group Assignment 25
We recommend the following books (not mandatory), and suggest complementary readings throughout the class:
Simchi-Levi, Kaminsky and Simchi-Levi, Designing and Managing the Supply Chain, Irwin McGraw Hill, 3rd edition, 2008.
Chopra and Meindl, Supply Chain Management, Prentice Hall, 2nd edition 2004.
You have to sign up for classes and examinations (including resits) in uSis.
There is only limited capacity for external students. Please contact the Business Studies programme coordinator.
Note: If you are an ICTiBPS student, you can contact the programme coordinator of ICTiBPS for any questions about your program.
Also register for every course in Blackboard. Important information about the course is posted here.