Operations Management

Module titleOperations Management
Module codeBEM2007
Academic year2019/0
Module staff

Professor Stephen Disney (Lecturer)

Duration: Term123
Duration: Weeks


Number students taking module (anticipated)


Description - summary of the module content

Module description


Operations management is concerned with managing processes, and how organisations create value in the production of goods and services.  This field of study is applicable in manufacturing and the service sector, from small retailers and professionals to banks and insurance companies, hospitals and utilities.  We study how firms achieve competitive success through improving the processes involved in delivering products and services, and reducing costs through increased efficiencies.  The module covers operations strategy, process design, planning and control, project management, quality, global supply and supply chain management, and improving how the product/service is delivered.

Additional Information


Diversity is encouraged and celebrated through the analysis of a wide range of global case studies and examples. Operations plays a key role in identifying how the traditional distinction between countries being ‘developed’ or ‘less developed’ is being replaced by ‘innovation rich’ vs. ‘innovation poor’ countries.


Sustainable supply chain frameworks and management philosophies are an essential feature of operations management through the provision of modern and eco-efficient customer solutions.

External Engagement

The lecturing team draws on theoretical frameworks, mathematical approaches and industrial practice from the perspective of their extensive theoretical and practical experience. Teaching is based on lecturers’ published research as well as their involvement with operations management practice.


You develop your skills in analytical thinking, critical evaluation, relationship-building and team-work, communication and influence, planning, controlling, measuring and organising.

Module aims - intentions of the module

The aim of this module is to introduce you to a broad range of operations management concepts, within the context of systems theory.  In addition to introductory sessions which explore the characteristics of operations management strategy and systems, a number of broad areas provide the framework for study:

  • Operations Strategy
  • Process design - including product/service, process, supply chain, layout and flow, and job design 
  • Planning and control - including capacity, supply chain, JIT/lean and quality
  • Thematic change programmes/philosophies (e.g. TQM)

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

ILO: Module-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 1. understand the major theories, concepts and practices of operations management
  • 2. analyse the effectiveness of operations management practices in a wide range of organisations and sectors (manufacturing, service and public sector)

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 3. demonstrate an understanding of theoretical principles through their application to organisational problems
  • 4. analyse and challenge organisational practices using systems concepts

ILO: Personal and key skills

On successfully completing the module you will be able to...

  • 5. undertake research to gather secondary evidence from both library and internet resources
  • 6. engage in debates to challenge academic enquiry and business practice

Syllabus plan

Syllabus plan

  • Introduction to operations management Transformation model & Operations Performance
  • Operations strategy Process design
  • Service Perspectives
  • Systems Dynamics
  • Planning and control and Capacity Management
  • Project Management
  • Six Sigma and Customer Experience
  • Quality Management
  • Lean Management
  • Revision

Learning and teaching

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Lectures12Whole group lectures
Workshops12Fortnightly workshops
Online content8Online blended learning content
Preparatory reading60Pre and post session guided reading
Revision and examination preparation58Revision for MCQ test and examination


Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Case study analyses and operations problemsIn 5 tutorial sessions1-6Oral feedback provided by tutor in tutorial session

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
MCQ2030 questions, written examination format -1 hour1-5Online result
Examination802 hours1-6Examination grade and examination feedback report posted on ELE


Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Examination2 hour Exam 1-6August Assessment period
MCQ testMCQ test (1 hour)1-5August Assessment period


Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Basic reading:

  • Slack, N., Brandon-Jones, A. and Johnston, R. (2016) Operations Management, 8th edition, Pearson. ISBN 978 292  09867 8

Additional material from learned journals and specific papers will be provided.

Indicative learning resources - Web based and electronic resources

ELE – http://vle.exeter.ac.uk/course/view.php?id=214

Module has an active ELE page

Key words search

Operations management, Systems thinking, Planning, Control, Process

Credit value15
Module ECTS


Module pre-requisites


Module co-requisites


NQF level (module)


Available as distance learning?


Origin date


Last revision date