The need for operations managers to reduce manufacturing costs, optimize productivity and improve product quality in order to stay in the market has become imperative. Many organizations now recognize the importance of automation, optimization of scheduling and a proper inventory management system, and are incorporating total quality management and total quality in their operations.
Today, the ordinary customer has become more sophisticated and demanding, and expects more variety, lower costs and better quality. Customers therefore drive demand and the industry has to meet this demand. Inter-firm rivalry and competition have also increased manifold. In line with these changes, organizations are replacing production-driven systems involving mass production, by market-driven systems to enable them to corner market share. This scenario has increased the importance of operations management in an organization, as it is directly responsible for the final product. As a result, operations management is gaining more significance and has become a key discipline in management science. Until recently, the field of operations of management was considered relevant only to the manufacturing sector. But with the increasing influence of service industries, the scope of operations management has widened. ...
The following are the activities carried out by the Operations Manager.
Plan product and service mix
Location and capacity planning
Decide upon production methods to use for each item.
Plan procurement of equipment.
Centralize or decentralize operations.
Decide upon functions, products, or hybrid organization structure.
Establish work center assignments.
Assign responsibility for every activity.
Encourage pride in performing as expected.
Compare costs to budget.
Compare actual labor hours to standards.
Inspect the quality levels.
Establish provisions of union contracts.
Establish personnel policies.
Establish employment contracts.
Issue job assignments and instructions.
Coordinate through use of common forecasts and master schedules.
Observe actual performance and recommend needed improvement.
Report, inform and communicate.
Respond to customer inquiries about status of orders. [ ICMR, 2003]
In order to succeed in all the above activities, an operations manager should have both technical and behavioral skills.
Budget Airlines - What are they'
There has been a revolutionary increase in the number of low-cost airline which are otherwise called the budget airlines in the aviation industry over the last few years. The budget airlines are usually operators who provide low-cost travel options for the passengers. The budget airlines try and cut the indirect costs to the maximum possible extent. Passengers are not offered wet towels, meals etc. Sometimes it may even happen that they do not even offer water to the passengers flying the budget airlines. [(Phillip), 2002]
Scheduled airlines are regular airlines that offer considerably high-cost air