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In this course you will focus on process improvement. You will learn how to set organizational priorities for continuous process improvement, how to execute process improvement projects, and how to sustain the initiative for continuous improvements.
Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:
• Understand the roles of process improvement
• Relate underlying principles to frameworks and techniques used for process improvement
• Synthesize information to make decisions for organizational initiatives and process improvement
• Apply analytical techniques for tactical decisions in a process improvement project
This course is part of the iMBA offered by the University of Illinois, a flexible, fully-accredited online MBA at an incredibly competitive price. For more information, please see the Resource page in this course and onlinemba.illinois.edu.
Course Orientation & Module 1 Operations Strategy & Disruptive Innovation
In this module, after introducing the concept of operations strategy, we specifically investigate different levels of strategy, including operations strategy, and how the different types of strategy are intertwined and must be aligned for the company to be successful. We will explain how operations strategy is formulated using a five-step process. You will learn key terms such as order qualifiers, which are the minimum must-have attributes that companies need to provide to the customers, and order winners, which allow the company to win customers. You will learn to understand the concept of strategic focus and the need for strategic tradeoffs. You will also learn the competing theory of cumulative capabilities and a way to reconcile the two.
Module 2: Service Operations Management
In this module, we will learn how service quality is the result of a customer’s journey before, during and after a service experience, and how a customer’s expectations and experience and the gap between the two affect a customer’s satisfaction. We will analyze this satisfaction gap to understand why it may arise due to misalignments between the customers’ and service providers’ understanding of the customer need. We will then learn about the five dimensions of service quality used by a popular measurement technique called SERVQUAL to measure service quality. Next, we will discuss how service failures arise and ways to recover from such failures.Finally, we will see how service operations are being disrupted by new technologies and new business models.
Module 3: Quality Management
In Module 3, we will learn about common- and special-cause variations and the role of statistical control charts in identifying them. We will focus on three common control charts – the p-chart, the c-chart and the Xbar-R chart. We will learn when each type of chart is used, and how they are constructed and interpreted. Using statistical methods, we will learn to recognize if processes are capable of meeting customer specifications. Finally, we will consider how newly emerging technologies are making it possible to extensively and routinely use the techniques of statistical process control.
Module 4: Digitization and Operations Management
This module starts with the four stages of industrialization and mainly discusses the fourth stage of digitization. You will learn how digitization is making its mark on three core function of supply chain management and how enabling technologies such as Cloud Computing and Big Data Analytics can disrupt or enhance operations. Then, we will discuss digital platforms and its features relative to a traditional view of supply chains. Grounded in transaction cost economics theory, digital platforms are changing make-buy decisions of firms. This module concludes with the emerging concept of a digital factory where key drivers and elements of digital factory are laid out. Key new technologies are introduced and real-world examples of their use are presented to show how the goals of lean management and six-sigma are being realized.
Gopesh Anand and Udatta Palekar