MEng Mechanical Engineering with Management

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Operations Management

Course unit fact file
Unit code ENGM30461
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 3
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Available as a free choice unit? No


This Management unit introduces students to Operations Management and its importance to the success of an organisation. Students will learn about the design and management of the processes, resources and systems that are required to deliver products and/or services to customers. Most engineers will work within organisations and consequently need to understand how their role contributes to the effective delivery of products and services to customers. The unit encourages you to consider your potential employment as a professional engineer within various operations within organisations.


Unit title Unit code Requirement type Description
Project Management (Aero/Mech) ENGM22491 Pre-Requisite Compulsory
Project Management (Civil) ENGM21511 Pre-Requisite Compulsory


The aims are for the students to:

-develop an understanding of how a company operates through organising and managing its staff, processes, information and materials to deliver products and services to its customers;

-to examine the external and internal influences on a company which will shape its future strategy including globalization, social responsibility and sustainability;

-to consider how the students’ role as professional engineers within a business contributes to the effective delivery of products and services to customers.


This unit runs over 12 weeks and is assessed through a multiple choice test (20% of the mark) and an exam (80% of the mark). Each week there is a lecture to introduce a key topic. Additional reading and learning resources are available in Blackboard; these should be studied each week to help deeper learning of the lecture topic. The topics will be illustrated with simple case studies from engineering and non-engineering companies to show how the theory can be applied in real situations. Note that the order/mode of presentation of the individual sessions shown below might change from year to year.

1. Introduction to operations management & Strategy in operations management

This lecture serves as an introductory session, providing you with an overview of the role operations management plays within companies and its implications for the work that engineers do. The lecture further broadens the way we view organisations to consider the external influences that help shape and even disrupt the things we do in companies.

2. Recruitment as part of operations management

Recruitment of talent is an essential part of operations management, requiring the right number of skilled people to be available at the right time. This session looks at recruitment from the viewpoints of both an employer and a job applicant.

3. Design thinking and innovation

The 21st century has seen the rising importance of creativity and innovation in business. In this session, you will find out how design thinking, creativity and innovation can contribute to the success of business operations. We will discuss approaches to improving creativity and innovation in business.

4. Process thinking and operations performance

You will learn about the design of operations, taking into account the criticality of planning and control techniques to ensure that the time, cost and quality performance targets are adhered to.

5. Continuous improvement in operations

This lecture demonstrates how the operations function can be improved continuously. You will be introduced to the concepts of performance measurement and management frameworks, the role of key performance indicators, the Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle, various tools and techniques used in improving operational performance, and total quality management.

6. People and operations

People are a vital resource to any business. You will examine people management issues, with a particular focus on resource deployment and development strategies and tactics.

7. Communication skills for operations management

Communicating with people within and outside a business is an essential part of operations. This lecture discusses critical issues surrounding communications skills in delivering the operations function.

8. Supply chains and business models

Products and services are delivered to consumers and end-users through increasingly complex, multi-layer supply chains. This session explains the key concepts in managing modern day supply chains.

9. IP and licensing

Businesses exist, in part, to make money from the activities that they do. The ability to turn an idea into commercially profitable, yet responsible, business is therefore critical to success.

10. Plant simulations Laboratory

This computer-based laboratory session provides hands-on experience of industrial plant design, operations, product delivery and the issues associated with real-life operations management. The software used here is designed by Siemens and is currently used for operations simulations in a variety of civil, mechanical and aerospace organizations.

11. Revision and tutorial

In this lecture, we will revise the topics covered during the course, in preparation for an exam. You will be given a sample exam paper to work through, and solutions will be discussed.

12. Multiple Choice Test (20% of the unit mark)

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Other 20%
Written exam 80%

Other - online quiz

Feedback methods

Exam - via script viewing

Feedback on all correct answers have been incorporate into Blackboard along with the questions, which is automatically visible to the students once the test marks are released 2 days after the test

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 24
Practical classes & workshops 4
Tutorials 2
Independent study hours
Independent study 70

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Akilu Kaltungo Unit coordinator

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