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Operations Management: Definition, Importance, and Key Contributors

What is Operations Management?

Operations Management is the filed which is sometimes utterly misunderstood because of the multidisciplinary nature of the field. This field is primarily concerned with the –planning, supervising and organizing in the context of production, provision and manufacturing of the services (Kato, 2015). To be told precisely, operations management is delivery- focused and it ensures that a company successfully transforms the inputs to the outputs in an extremely effective manner. The inputs are something which could potentially represent anything starting from materials, equipment and also technology to staff or employees or any part of the Human Resources. Operations Management is something that has strong foundation in both the areas of logistics and supply chain management.

Importance of Operations Management in the field of Management:

Operations Management is significant in almost every business organization since it helps in efficiently managing, controlling, supervising the people, services or goods. Operations Management can find use in almost every business; in health sector, OM (Operations Management) ensures there is proper delivery of health with accurate instruments at the appropriate time. It is also helpful for people like doctors, nurses, surgeons or any other health officers so that they deliver timely service (Zhang, Wang & Lin, 2019). For the manufacturing or production company to be successful, Operations Management is a major unit which must stand first. For example, if an oil and gas company has a product that has been discharged by the ship to the designated reservoirs to be made available for a large number of customers. Operations Management has the responsibility to see to the efficient delivery of the plans, schedules and products about how anything should be done. With the help of Operations Management people can attain more and the chances of productivity is also increased. It is for the importance of Operations Management that it is highly utilised regardless of the size of an organization or what they are capable of doing. There are certain benefits that Operations Management bring to the table which makes it so important in the field management; firstly, Operations Management ensures to the quality of products or goods that would mostly be suitable for the clients. Moreover, when a good is of a quality, it gives an organization the edge in the form of competitive advantage over their competitors (Zhang, Wang & Lin, 2019). Secondly, Operations Management brings the benefit of customer satisfaction; it rightly ensures that customer satisfaction is coupled with quality of the product. Along with such factors, Operations Management reduces the operating cost and increase the productivity of any company. Operations Management can make all of these benefits possible which makes it extremely important in the field of management and for almost every company.

Importance of Operations Management in the field of Management

Contributors in the Field of Management and the Contribution:

The study of management as a subject might be comparatively new, specifically if it is paralleled with other scientific subjects. However, the contributor in this field requires historical links as it would make people to truly understand the current management. There are two contributors, who I believe are pioneer in the field of management and they have made ground- breaking contribution that has helped in setting the base of management as it is today. The first contributor is Henri Fayol; he was trained as a mining engineer and then became the managing director of an iron foundry and coal- mining combined. It was from his own understanding that he articulated and wrote papers about his own philosophies of administrative theory in as early as the year 1900. He was the one who first mentioned about the “elements” of administration and it was published in a book in the year 1916; however, America did not get the chance to get completely exposed to his theory until the book was converted and it was entitled General and Industrial Management (Peaucelle & Guthrie, 2015).

The next person who should be mentioned for his contribution in the field of management is Max Weber; his work ran chronologically analogous to that of the work of Fayol and also Frederick Taylor. Weber was an intellectual from Germany who had interests in the subject of sociology, religion, economics and also political science. It was Max Weber who used “bureaucracy” concept as an ideal arrangement for a company for the department of management of large- scale companies. His effort was also not converted into English until late 1947 (Mommsen & Osterhammel, 2013). The concept of Weber about best administrative system was noted to be similar to the work of Taylor. Some of the essential elements of Weber comprises of the division of labour and also the pecking order. It was also assumed by him that the choice should be made on the basis of technical qualifications, official’s appointments must be based on the managers, qualifications should not be the proprietors and undeviating rules should have to be implemented.  

Favourite Contributor and the Reason Why it is Favourite:

If I am asked who would be the contributor whose work I would enlist in my favourite lists, I would name Henri Fayol. The primary reason behind it is the fact that the current comprehension of administrative roles is based largely on the 3rd classical management theorist by the name of Henri Fayol. Most importantly, he proposed 14 principles of management that has been very helpful and contributed a lot for easier understanding about management as a discipline. These 14 principles include Division of Work, Authority, Discipline, Unity of Command, Unity of Direction, and Subordination of Individual Interests to the General Interest, Remuneration, Centralization, Scalar- chain, order, Equity, Stability of Tenure of Personnel, Initiative and Esprit de Corps. Moreover, it was Fayol who believed that administration could be taught and that executive capability was deeply desired as one move upward; management has been taught as a separate function that is implementable to all kinds of accomplishments. Even though the majority of the management principles are still held true today, the most significant contribution of Fayol is the identification of the duties of management (Peaucelle & Guthrie, 2015). The original list of 5 management duties as mentioned by him namely, foresight, organization, coordinate, command, and control has been changed over time, but the base has been set by Fayol which is what makes it one of my favourites. The current theories also recognise the 6 management functions, which are planning, staffing, organizing, controlling, leading and motivating. These are the list that also mirrors the accumulation of 2 more activities and re- categorization of the command and organize duties like that of leading.

Suggestions for Improvement of the Contribution:

My suggestions for the field would revolve improving management in the emergency department. Few of the business schools have accepted the contribution that emergency management theory can take a business operation to its success. As an outcome, attention to hazards and also disasters effect are restricted to crisis management and also contingency planning (Weber, McEntire & Robinson, 2002). Interdisciplinary courses will help in exposing students from all across the campus to the hazards’ nature and the impacts of the disasters; they will know how much it is needed in their curriculum. The act of including students from diverse business programs will also be helpful in exposing the hazard –oriented coursework to the business operations’ vulnerability and effects are well- beyond the financial considerations. This kind of an integrated approach will organize people to comprehend the altering nature of the threats in an progressively unreliable world.


Kato, K. (2015). U.S. Patent Application No. 14/384,197.

Mommsen, W. J., & Osterhammel, J. (2013). Max Weber and His Contempories. Routledge.

Peaucelle, J. L., & Guthrie, C. (2015). Henri Fayol, the manager. Routledge.

Weber, R. T., McEntire, D. A., & Robinson, R. J. (2002). Public/private collaboration in disaster: Implications from the World Trade Center terrorist attacks. Natural Hazards Research and Applications Information Center.

Zhang, W. J., Wang, J. W., & Lin, Y. (2019). Integrated design and operation management for enterprise systems.

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