Individuals who have earned a graduate degree in operations management might have the opportunity to pursue careers in a number of different industries. Some common industries of employment for operations management professionals include; distribution management, installation management, inventory planning and management, materials management, plant management, production quality control management, production planning, quality assurance management, warehouse management, and supply chain management. This article provides a brief overview of the job responsibilities one might have if they chose to pursue career opportunities in one of these fields.
Distribution refers to the processes involved in supply chains, shipping and receiving materials, and transportation between both manufacturers and clients. It most often pertains to conveyance methods, stock control, warehousing and monitoring the flow of goods.
Installation involves the coordination and deployment of engineering products via organization, controlling and integration. Products and services are calibrated according to technical standards and client requirements.
Inventory planning and management involves the coordination of the flow of labor and materials to aid production of goods or services. Inventory managers review and assess factors, including distribution ability, production costs and market demand to determine necessary levels of stock to meet demand and to minimize costs and production issues.
Materials managers determines purchasing and stocking for resources and inventory. They report to production and distribution departments, which rely upon a controlled flow of materials to meet schedules and customer requirements. These operations require forecasting of resource availability, cost analysis and market demand.
Plant managers administer strategies and oversight in implementation of production. They must coordinate at all levels of manufacturing, from planning/scheduling to completion and distribution. They are also responsible for optimization of resources and labor for completion of production within budgetary and material parameters.
Individuals responsible for production quality control are charged with ensuring product integrity via inspection and testing at various stages of production and development. They apply mathematical and statistical analysis against production standards and output to determine the quality and reliability of the engineered product.
Production/operations planning refers to the organization of production schedules and strategies for the manufacturing cycle. The master schedule establishes the sequence and lead times for each step of operation to coordinate production, materials, logistics and distribution. Deadlines are determined by analysis of sales forecasts or client demand.
Quality assurance aims to ensure the integrity of manufacturing processes via inspection and testing during development and implementation. Mathematical and statistical analysis measure against production standards and output to determine the reliability of facility materials and product.
Warehousing refers to the management of storage and distribution activities within company facilities and shipping systems. Those responsible coordinate material operations, including monitoring incoming and outbound shipments, handling and disposition of materials, stocking allocated supplies and monitoring warehouse inventory.
Supply chain/logistics involves the administration of materials through the phases of manufacturing. Supply needs are forecast for procurement, inventory is allocated internally and strategies are determined for distribution of products.