School of Business Administration

Course Number: Management 730
Course Title: Operations Management - 3 hours. Credit

Course Description: Introduction to major problems and decision processes of operations management.  Major aspects covered: operations design, resource allocation and activity planning ans systems control.

Course Prerequisites: Graduate Standing

Course Text and Related Material:
Required:  Operations Mangaement for MBA's by Jack R. Meredith and Scott M. Shafer, John Wiley and Sons, New York, 1999.
The Goal by Goldratt, North River Press.

Optional Reading:
The New Rational Manager by Kepner (see link to

Course Objectives:
(1) To present the basic topical areas of traditional operations management from a management perspective rather than a technicians perspective.
(2) To develop the student's ability to analyze operations management problems and to provide a foundation on which to generate problem solutions. .
(3) To expose the students to the operations viewpoint of current production managers.
(4) To encourage student participation in the discussion of cases and other reading materials.

Grading:  Grades will be assigned as follows:
         A    90% and above
         B    80% and above
         C    70% and above
         D    60% and above
         F    below 60%

The grading system is subject to change based on the assignments as they evolve.
   Midterm:   30%
   Class Participation and Projects 40%
   Final Exam:  30%

On Line Links:   Several On Line Links to Operations Management (and Production Management) can be found at the following addresses.  You may want to explore these links when you have time.

On Line Course by Steven Lawrence of the Univ. of Colorado
On Line Course by James Evans of the Univ. of Cincinnati
Some Plant Tours
Production and Operations Management Home Page
Tools on the Web
Experiential Learning Activities

Library Links

Access to articles on POM can be gained through linking to the UT Martin Home Page and then the Paul Meek Library
and finally through ProQuest.  (If you are a first time user to ProQuest, be sure to follow the "first time users instructions").
Another potential academic research database in the library is BizSuite.   You may want to try BizSuite for references.    In
either of these data bases,  you will often find that only an abstract is given while at times, the entire article is available.

                             Management 730 Course Schedule Sheet

Instructor: Dr. Ed Knight
Office Location: Business Administration Bldg. 229A
Office Telephone: (731)587-7351
Home Office: 124 Clark St., Martin, Tennessee
Home Telephone: (731) 588-1002
e-Mail Address:
FAX: (731) 587-7231


Office Hours:  Call my office any day and leave a message.  I will return your call.  Better yet, send me an e-mail and I'll
answer hopefully within 24 hours.

Class Session Topics: (details of each session will be targeted by clicking on the link)

CLASS SESSION #1.  Introduction to Operations Management
 In class session #1,  an introduction to Operations Management will be given.  Discussion will center on Chapter 1 of the text book by Meredith.  Some guiding notes for the Class#1 are given.  We will also discuss the relationship between Productivity, Production and Quality.

A wonderful introductory series on Operations Management is given by Steven Lawrence.

1.  Read Chapter 2 of the text by Meredith.
2.  Review the POM web site links given above.
3.  E-mail me through the Mgmt 730 list serve after reviewing all of the material.  Please explain to me and the other classmates what you would like to get out of the course and what approach you are interested in taking.

 CLASS SESSION #2.  Operations Management Strategy

First, let's review the Class #2 instructor notes from the text. These will conclude with some powerpoint slides on   operations management strategy . In order to access these slides,  you will click on the link and SAVE the file to your DESKTOP.  Once that is completed, double click on the icon and open the power point slides. When the class notes end,  we'll conclude with the final power point slides on Operations Strategy.

 Based on the introduction,  the TEAM PROJECT for the semester will be introduced.

1.  Read Chapter 3 of the text by Meredith.
2.  Identify and make arrangements with a company to do an Operations/Marketing Assessment.  Each group will hand in the specifics of their project, that is, which company and the cooperating individuals at the company.  I will except some e-mail information from at least one spokesman for each group regarding the company selected, individuals contacted to insure that data is available and cooperation guaranteed.  Additionally, the group can begin gathering information and sketching out SECTION 1 of the project called the BUSINESS OVERVIEW.

CLASS SESSION #3.  Quality Management

Quality Management is an important concept in the world of modern business.  You might like to review the summary of the chapter via the quality management slides link.  After covering the slide material from the text,  I will demonstrate some quality concepts using the quincunx and the bead experiments.  You might also want to visit the Experiential Games Link and read about the Deming experiments. Although we don't have time to go through any other summary information on quality in class, I suggest that you review the power point slides from the Lawrence website on quality.


1.  The BUSINESS OVERVIEW section of the report should be completed and handed in at the next class session.
2.  Read Chapter 4 of the text by Meredith.

 CLASS SESSION #4.  Product/Service Design

 The design of a product or service is critical to the ultimate success of the company.  In today's dynamic and globally competitive market,  this aspect of operations management is critical as the product life cycle shortens and customer expectations increase.  As a summary of the information from the chapter,  you will want to review the product/service design power point presentation.   Next,  we will discuss some concepts of the Team Project regarding  LINKING PRODUCTS TO CUSTOMERS AND MARKETS.   You can review some of the powerpoint slides developed by Steven Lawrence on "Linking Operations to Customers and Markets" as you work on your team project for your group.

1.  Work on the project segment "Linking Operations to Customers and Markets".  Material will be due in two weeks (Sept. 22, 1999).
2.  Read Chapter 5 of the text by Meredith and Shafer. Be sure to write down a "worksheet" for each section of the text as to how you would utilize this information at your own company location.  I will do the same for UTM,  my work assignment.  If possible,  why don't you e-mail your worksheets to me in advance so that I can review some of your ideas.  Maybe we can generate a more interactive class with this method.  Let's give it a try.

CLASS SESSION #5.  Transformation System Design

The selecdtion of the appropriate operating system to transform the conceptual product/service to a commodity or service of value is discussed.  Included in the material is information relating to "reengineering" - a topic of interest in the last 5 or 6 years.
You will be able to review the powerpoint slides for this material using the Transformation System Design link.

I have contacted Mr. Bob Nolan of DynaMetal, Inc. of Brownsville, Tn.  As you know,  I regard Bob as the "best manager" that I know.  He has agreed to meet with us on OCT. 28 at the site in Jackson.  For the group at UTM,  I really believe that we all ought to make the trip to that site for this meeting.  If need be, I can get a UT van for our transportation.


1.  Complete Section 2 of the Team Project and turn in for grading.

CLASS SESSION #6.  Operations Manager Presentation
     Mr. Mark Mash,  Operations Manager of Miller Country Hams in Dresden, Tennessee, will be making a presentation to you.  He will be following the TEAM PROJECT outline as he develops his course presentation.

    Mr Mash will discuss the background of the company,  its history,  ways in which the company interacts with its customers, and how cost accounting,  productivitiy and yield control helped change the company from losses to profits.  Additionally he will discuss the ways in which quality, service, and process control help to stabilize the company's future.


1.  Begin work on Section 3 of the Team Project.  Section 3 of the team project will be due in 2 weeks ( Oct. 7, 1999).  The Section deals with "Products and Processes".
2.  Read Chapter 6 of the Meredith text on Capacity and Location Planning.  Associated slides that summarize the material are linked as usual.

CLASS SESSION #7.  Capacity and Location Planning
       The translation of forecasted demand into capacity requirements is covered in this material.  Balancing capacity and demand is always a challenge given the unpredictability of demand and the time delay between committing to added capacity and actually having the extra capacity on line.  The material is summarized in the Capacity and Location Planning slides link.


1.  Read Chapter 7 of the Meredith text on Schedule Management.
2.  Complete work on Section 3 of the Team Project.  Try to have the material ready to be handed in on Thursday evening.

CLASS SESSION #8.  Schedule Management

   The coordination of the right tasks at the right times in the appropriate quantities is the task of scheduling.  The sequence of scheduling activities,  aggregate planning, master scheduling, and the scheduling of services will be discussed in class.  The material is summarized in the Schedule Managment slides link.


1.  Read Chapter 8 of the Meredith text on Materials Management.
2.  Begin on Section 4 of the Team Project.  Section 4 of the Team project (Competing with Productivity and Price) will be due in two weeks, that is, Oct. 21st.  This section of the report begins to concentrate on the first of three important elements of survival.  Every organization must be able to compete on price (in some form) and even more importantly productivity.

CLASS SESSION #9.  Materials Management

     Materials management deals with the determination of how much and when to order the specific product elements so as to support the execution of the production plan.   Many such systems exist for materials management.  Systems such as ABC inventory,  the EOQ model, and MRP models attempt to quantitatively facilitate managerial decisions about inventory management.  These will be discussed and presented.  The material is summarized in the Inventory Management slides link.


1.  Read Chapter 9 in the Meredith text on Supply Chain Management and Just-in-Time Systems.
2.  Complete your material on Section 4 of the Team project (Competing on Productivity and Price).  The material will be due on Oct. 21.

CLASS SESSION #10.  Supply Chain Management and JIT Systems

     Supply chain management and JIT systems deal with the supply, distribution, purchasing, logistics, transportation and warehousing of a companies goods (and services).  Given the fact that the relevant percentage of labor and overhead in a product has decreased dramatically over the years as automation has increased and cycle time decreased,  the importance of the purchase and management of the supplies to make the product has increased.  Managing these resources is the subject of this chapter.  The material is summarized in the Supply Chain Management slides link.


1.  Be prepared to be ON TIME next week as the promised exciting speaker from Dynametal, Inc., Mr. Bob Nolan, will be giving our lecture.  I am personally excited about his presentation and hope that you will be also.
2.  Begin work on Section 5 of the Team Project (Competing on Quality and Promotion).  The materiall will should be completed by Nov. 4.

CLASS SESSION #11.  Operations Manager Presentation (Oct. 28)

     Mr. Robert Nolan,  Chief Operating Officer of Dynametal, Inc. of Brownsville, Tennessee, will be our guest speaker.  Bob is one of the most knowlegable and effective operations managers that I have met.  His background includes teaching topics in the area of TQM and his extensive personal library of management literature truly qualifies him as a practicioner with an academic background.


1.  Continue to work on Section 5 of the Team Project (Competing on Quality and Promotion).  This material will be due by Nov. 4, 1999.
2.  Read the final chapter in the Meredith text, Chapter 10 for next week.

CLASS SESSION #12.  Project Management (Nov. 4)

The emphasis of this chapter is to examine and study the management of projects and implementations that are undertaken on an infrequent basis or one time basis.  Some of the basis project management topics which include PERT and CPM are discussed with simple problems used to illustrate the nature of the planning and controlling process.

CLASS SESSION #13.  Operations Management by Goldratt (Nov. 11)

Elihayu Goldratt has become a well known writer in the field of Operations Management, writing such well known texts as The Goal and the Theory of Constraints.  By far the most popular and well known book,  read by literally every operations manager, is the book "The Goal".

Please have this book read for class.  We will discuss the Goldratt principles mentioned in the text.  You may also want to go to the Goldratt web sites to explore more information on this interesting writer.

Some questions that you might be prepared to answer are listed below.
1. What were the symptoms of the problems at UniCo?
2. What were the driving forces behind the problems?
3. What was the GOAL of the company?????
4. How is the GOAL accomplished?
5. What is the role of  “MEASURES” is driving a business – both good and bad?
6. What were the remedies to solve the problem?
7. What pressures do people face when they attempt to implement new ideas?????

CLASS SESSION #14.  Meetings with Project Teams to Review their Material (Nov. 18)


CLASS SESSION #15.  Class Presentations by Project Teams (Dec. 2)
    Each project team will be allowed approximately 45 minute to present their case and to answer questions posed by their classmates.  Thus,  the presentation should be timed to be approximately 30 minutes with the remainder of the time available for questions and discussion.

FINAL EXAM:  Thursday, Dec. 9

   A list of approximately 10  - 15 discussion questions will be posted in the next few weeks.  You will need to be prepared to answer approximately 5 or 6 of these questions during the final exam.

     1.  Bob Nolan of Dynametal stated that "excellence" in operations is not a state but rather a "rate".  Explain how this concept guides his management style in light of continuous improvement activities at Dynametal.
     2.  Bob Nolan of Dynametal also stated that you cannot afford not to train - in fact,  training makes money.  Explain why you feel his concepts are effective or not and why his concepts of training are not adopted by others.
     3.  Describe the "goal" of a profit oriented manufacturing company (as described in the book THE GOAL) and give the three suggested measures to drive the goal.  Then give and describe at least 5 remedies that UniCo implemented to help achieve the "goal".
     4.  Chp. 1 - Operations is defined as the activities associated with transforming inputs into useful outputs in order to create a result of useful value.  Describe this definition in respect to a University (such as UTM).  That is, what are the inputs, the activities, and usefult outputs and how do we measure success of the operation from a systems perspective.
    5.  Chp. 2 - Describe a "vision" statement and a "mission statement" and "operating goals" and  how they provide focus to the organization.
    6.   Chp. 2 - What is productivity and how do you improve it?  Explain why the following plans are "productivity improvement programs" or not.
    (a)  An incentive plan for piecework in a factory.
    (b)  Moving a factory overseas for cheaper labor.
7.  Chp. 3 - The issue of "quality" can be addressed in two ways:  the targeted "level" of quality desired and the "consistency" of meeting that targeted level.  Describe how a company would chose the targeted level and then the tools they would use to insure that they consistently (within statistical bounds) meet that level.
8.  Chp. 4 and 5 - It has been said that 2/3 rds of the manufacturing cost of a product or the delivery cost of a service are results of the "design process" - and not the incremental continuous improvement of a poor design.  Explain this concept by using an example.
9.  Chp. 6 -  Explain the Theory of Constraints by Goldratt and some of the nine guidelines that capture the essence of the theory.
10.  Chp. 7 - In general, two pure strategies (along with many mixed strategies) exist for matching capacity and demand:  level production and chase demand.  Describe the economic considerations that you would make as an operations manager when selecting one of the two pure strategies (and/or a mixed strategy).
11.  Chp. 8 - Knowledge of whether your inventory results from dependent or independent demand is important.  Reducing inventories is obviously a major emphasis of businesses today.  Describe inventory reduction approaches that are being used today that attack independent demand inventory and dependent demand inventory.
12.  Chp. 9 - Explain how purchasing becomes disproportionally important in profit calculations as companies become more and more productive such that they use less and less labor as a percent of the product cost.  Use some numerical calculations as an example.  Then explain some key elements of effective purchasing so that this important observation can be implemented.

The final exam is given by the link FINALEXAM.  Please download the exam.  You will have two hours to type up your answer and e-mail me the results by 8:50 P.M. at

Good luck!