MSc Business Analytics: Operational Research and Risk Analysis / Course details

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Global Operations Management

Course unit fact file
Unit code BMAN70081
Credit rating 15
Unit level FHEQ level 7 – master's degree or fourth year of an integrated master's degree
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Available as a free choice unit? No


Operations Management (OM) is a core field of management encompassing the design, operation and improvement of the processes and systems employed in the creation and delivery of an organisation’s products and services. Essentially, operations management is concerned with explaining how factories and services work. Managing operations well requires both strategic and practical skills and is critical to every type of organisation. It is only through effective and efficient utilisation of resources that an organisation can be successful in the long run.

This course focuses on developing students’ understanding of the foundations of Operations Management. The primary objective is to familiarise students with the basic theories, principles, techniques, methods, and applications of operations management within a variety of industries. Topics include Operations Strategy, Quality Management, Process Analysis, Capacity Management, Inventory Management, Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Lean Production, the Theory of Constraints (TOC), and Service Operations Management. Throughout the course different theories, principles and practices will be discussed, the focus is on using these techniques to manage and improve operational performance.

Why should you study operations management? A solid understanding of Operations Management (OM) is necessary in all careers. For example:

1) Good knowledge of OM tools (diagnostic and analytical tools) is highly valuable for employees, production managers, Operations Directors and management consultant.

2) Detailed knowledge of OM is required for Managing Directors to understand the cost and benefits of combining the companies’ operations in a merger or acquisition scenario.

3) Good understanding of OM is needed for a marketing manager when they want to develop new products that leverage the established production processes.

4) Good knowledge of OM is required for a finance manager to evaluate the capital investment proposals in a better way

Above all, good knowledge of OM is mandatory if you plan to start your own company!

* Required for CIPS accreditation



BMAN70081 Programme Req: BMAN70081 is only available as a core unit to students on MSc Operations, Project & Supply Chain Management and as an elective to students on MSc Business Analytics


To introduce students to the core topics of Operations Management at the start of their MSc degree.

•       To cover issues associated with Operations Management that are not explicitly covered in other parts of the MSc programme.

•       To show how the various topics within the field of Operations Management are integrated in managing operations functions.

•       To provide a view of operations management that encompasses service and manufacturing applications.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course unit students should be able to:

•        Describe the evolution and contribution of operations strategy and operations management.

•        Describe the main quality control practices, such as zero-defects philosophy, Total Quality Management (TQM), Statistical Process Control (SPC) and Six Sigma.

•        Compare the different types of factory layout and understand how to conduct operational process analysis (e.g. how to calculate throughput times, cycle times, efficiency, Work In Progress), etc. 

•        Understand different capacity management strategies, such as level capacity strategies, chase demand strategies, demand management strategies, yield management, and scheduling. 

•        Explain the importance of the Economic Order Quantity (EOQ) equation, Reorder Point, Reorder level, safety stocks and Just In Time (JIT) systems to inventory management.

•        Understand the role that Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems play in contemporary operations planning

•        Specify the different attributes of the Lean Production System and apply them to contemporary operational contexts, drawing upon the principles, tools and practices developed by Toyota.

•        Identify the main service operations management practices, and analyse how operations management practices can be used to improve service performance.

•        Discuss the use and application of the Theory of Constraints (TOC) and how it influences operational performance.


Teaching and learning methods

Formal Contact Methods

Minimum Contact hours: 20 

Delivery format: Lecture and Workshops 

Assessment methods

Individual Report (40%)

Written Examination (60%)


Feedback methods

Informal advice and discussion during a lecture, seminar, workshop or lab.
Responses to student emails and questions from a member of staff including feedback provided to a group via an online discussion forum.
Specific course related feedback sessions.
Written and/or verbal comments on assessed or non-assessed coursework.
Written and/or verbal comments after students have given a group or individual presentation.
Generic feedback posted on Blackboard regarding overall examination performance.

Recommended reading

Slack, N., Brandon-Jones, A. and Johnston, R. (2016) Operations Management, 8th edition, Pearson Publishers, London.


Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Assessment written exam 2
Lectures 20
Seminars 10
Independent study hours
Independent study 118

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Ali Hassanzadeh Kalshani Unit coordinator

Additional notes

Informal Contact Methods
Office Hours
Online Learning Activities (blogs, discussions, self assessment questions)
Drop in Surgeries (extra help sessions for students on material they may be struggling with)

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