Operation Management in Business
Operation management is a process whereby the ideas are brought into actions in an organization or a business. This process has become very important in this competitive and constantly changing market environment where every business person wishes to have the best in terms of delivery to his or her clients. It is through a business operation that we can achieve what we desire as far as business is concerned (Christopher, 2011). In any management practice, a business owner would aspire to put on a clear focus the operations that he or she wishes to conduct in order to support the business. For example, logistics and transport, production, sales, among others may be some of the operations that must take place in a business (Konzalez-Bernito, 2013). As have been stated in this report, almost all forms of business need operation management to keep them going.
I have chosen The Bata Retail Shop as one of the retailers that mainly consider operation management in its operations. This retailer market distributes and sells Bata products in many parts of the country. The products are manufactured by Bata industry and they include shoes, bags, belts, jackets among many others. The retail shops act as outlet points for selling the products to the consumers who come from around the geographical area where the shop is situated. Generally, the Bata retailer provides the customers with the opportunity to easily access these products without walking long distances in search of the products. The output of this business depends on the manner in which the sales agents and representatives meet the customers and how efficient is handling capacity (Schmenner, 2011). The products are required to be available at the shops all the times so that the customers are not inconvenienced. It is important to note that, for a business to prosper, the customers are supposed to be served with a lot of humility and goods be available all the times. All these are possible only with effective operation management practices (Piercy, 2012). The Bata Company tries to make sure that its outlets are built in almost all the major and upcoming towns in the country. As one of the largest shoe manufacturing company, its operations are streamlined to ensure that customer satisfaction is guaranteed. Notably, it has several departments that deal with specific tasks or operations so that there is no clashing and surety of smooth running of the business. The major departments include transport, distribution, sales etc. These sections ensure that the output as per required by the management is fully met. The input by workforce is reflected from the manner the output is optimally achieved. The input operations include workforce or labor, raw materials, equipment, and machines. These parts must coexist to ensure the output is achieved (Martinez-Campillo, 2013). There must be proper and adequate labor who are ready to work as a team for the achievement of company goals and objectives. Raw materials must be available and within reach otherwise, the company or the firm may not transform anything. In the nowadays world of business, technology plays an important role in enriching the output (Dietrich, 2010). Therefore, we can consider it an important element of input that ensures the output is achieved faster and effectively. Technology is as important as any input that is put in place. It expedites the other forms of input by complementing processes and speeding up the work. Therefore, for any operation management, technology should be considered as part of an operation that improves output (Armistead, 2014).
Application of Operation Management in the Retail Industry
Three areas of retailer’s operations that are critical to its competitive advantage
Among the most important areas of this retailer’s operation management is the planning, coordinating, and organizing. Planning involves forecasting the future and putting in order all the factors that will enable the planned activities to take place smoothly (Reynolds, 2015). In any organized company, there must be a proper plan for all the activities that will take place and those that are currently executed. It the sole responsibility of management to offer and inclusive plan for all the necessary prerequisite executable programs and share it with all other employees and other stakeholders so that they can be part and parcel of every step that is aimed at achieving the goals and objectives. The Bata Company has proper plans that have been put in place to ensure that in future it becomes the leading manufacturer and manufacturer of its products. With this proper planning, it would be able to compete favorably with its competitors (Majukwa, 2016). Apart from planning, this retailer also takes serious coordination as this is one of the management areas, which is quite crucial to the success of any business. It can be taken as the backbone of all other management functions. Coordination is fundamental to the success of the business as it is concerned with bringing all the departments together through mutual understanding (Rumbeta, 2015). In this sense, we are able to take the business to another level and by making sure that all the ideas are brought on board and opinions and suggestions are not disregarded. For our chosen retailer, there must be proper coordination among the various departments, for example, the sales department must coordinate effectively with production department to ensure there is a constant supply of products to the sales department. To ensure that every employee does his or her work effectively, there must be an adequate link to the other respective colleagues, and one should be in a position to know whom and where to report to in case a clarification on an issue is needed.
It is important to note that organization is part of operation management as it entails overall responsibility of the management. It may be necessary for the manager to organize the logistics and transportation of raw and finished materials to or from specific places. In this case, the value chain processes will have to be considered in all circumstances (Johnson, 2013). During the case of transportation, coordination of all the responsible departments must be effectively carried out to ensure no losses or irregularities are reported during or after the delivery of the products. This brings us to another very important part of an operation called supervision. These processes, therefore, have to be supervised to ensure that the products arrive at their destinations safely and without any anomalies recorded. Therefore, there must be someone whose work is sole to supervise the processes and ensure there are order and credibility. While making sure that the credibility is maintained throughout any step undertaken, it is obvious that there would be improved quality of products and services given to the clients.
Case Study of Bata's Retail Operations
The problems that are faced in operation management can be addressed by ensuring that the management is up to the task of bringing all the ideas and opinions on board, consult, and built a friendship with all the employees. Moreover, no any given time should the top management rush to make crucial decisions such as those that involve the welfare of employees. Organizing activities is a complex issue that needs keenness and upright mind at all times (Johnson, 2013). It is therefore important that the concerned persons should consider all the players’ views as important as his or hers and uphold transparency and inclusivity in whatever steps taken.
It is important to note that although organizing is a responsibility of the management, every other person should also organize his or her affairs and activities in a manner that ensures that the guidelines by the top management are included in their thoughts. In this case, there will be a smooth running of the business operations and every person will enjoy his or her work. Poor planning may lead to some important activities failing to be accomplished and the objectives and goals of the business may not be achieved in the long run. Therefore, all activities must be properly planned and given the adequate time of completion and kick off. For instance, if there are inaccuracies or delays in procurement processes, the effect can be felt across all other departments that depend on what is done in the procurement department. This may then lead to low qualities of products because there may be no adequate raw materials to use (Dietrich, 2010). It is important to note that in order to achieve the goals and objectives of any organization, the three management operations must be considered to a greater extent as they act as the pillars of the management. They play an important role in ensuring that all the activities and operations are properly executed without drawbacks or delays.
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Konzalez-Bernito. (2013). A Theory of Purchasing Contribution to Management. Business Daily, II(7), 40-45.
Majukwa. (2016). Operation Management Impact on Achieving Strategic fit: A case from the retail sector in Zimbabwe. Business Daily, III(20), 6-20.
Martinez-Campillo. (2013). The service-learning methodology applied to operations management: From the operations plan to business start up. Adventure Works, III(10), 1-8.
Piercy. (2012). Business history and operations management. Business Adventure, II(9), 4-8.
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Rumbeta. (2015). The management of service operations. Business Business, VII(30), 70-90.
Schmenner. (2011). Executive Briefing/Operations Management. Business Insight, IV(10), 10-13.
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