The Sage Course Companion on Operations Management is an accessible introduction to the subject that will help readers to extend their understanding of key concepts and enhance their thinking skills in line with course requirements. It provides support on how to revise for exams and prepare for and write assessed pieces. Readers are encouraged not only to think like an operations manager but also to think about the subject critically.

Planning and Control

Planning and control

This topic is concerned with short-term planning and control in order to meet estimated demand. This task is made challenging because of the unstable nature of market demand which works against the execution of an efficient and effective operations system.

One way of dealing with unstable demand is to produce the product or service (or elements of the product or service) in advance. The first part of this section evaluates the use of make-to-stock, make-to-order and resource-to-order planning policies. The second part of this section examines the activities that form operations control tasks. These generally consist of loading (determining capacity and volumes), sequencing (deciding on the order of execution of work) and scheduling (allocating a start and finish time to a ...

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