With intense global competition, companies today understand that the best way to boost the bottom line is to cut costs through more efficient operations management (OM). Beyond the intimidating jargons and sophisticated tools that operations management offer, how does it help companies improve operations efficiency. Is it just another cosmetic styling tool that helps companies market their operations? Or does it provides a comprehensive operations strategy that actually work?

With good understanding of the various operations management tools, Achilles believes that key OM concepts are crucial in helping companies make both micro and macro business decisions. Here are some of the common business decisions and some of the OM concepts that can provide the intuition and logic to support each decision making process.

Achilles has worked with multiple clients on operations management consulting projects. Contact us to find out more!

Illustration I : Performance Measurement and Analytics


Illustration II : Inventory Analysis and Policy Definition

inventory analysis

Illustration III : Statistical Modeling and Simulation Techniques


Illustration IV : Optimization Modelling


Here are some typical business decisions that can be better addressed through appropriate adaptation of operations concept:

Business Decisions Operations Management Concepts
What should be the quantity and mix of products produced?

What are the appropriate staffing levels?

What are the capacities and resources required?

Aggregate Planning

  • Smoothing
  • Bottlenecks
  • Planning horizon
  • Demand (Deterministic vs Stochastic)
  • Linear programming
How much inventory / raw materials to carry?


Inventory Management

  • Raw materials, work-in-progress, finished goods
  • Holding, Order, Material Costs
  • EOQ Model
  • Newsboy Model
  • Reorder Policy
How to plan and track work release?

How to convert demand forecast into requirements schedule to subassemblies and raw materials?

Production Management

  • Push vs pull control system
  • Materials resource planning (MRP I / MRP II)
  • Just in time (JIT)
  • Kanban system
  • Master production scheduling
  • Lot-for-lot
How to manage flow of information in a integrated chain of suppliers, manufacturers, distributors and customers?

Where does SCM fit into the firm’s overall strategy?

Supply Chain Management

  • Transportation network
  • Transshipment problem
  • Distribution resource planning
  • Frequency requirement
  • Time window
  • The Bullwhip effect
  • Shortage gaming
  • Inbound / outbound logistics
  • Warehousing
How to sequence production activities on the shop floor?

To meet demand spikes through additional shifts or outsourcing?

Operations Scheduling

  • Job shop scheduling
  • Product family lead time planning
  • Shortest processing Time first
  • Earliest due date
  • Mean flow time
How to management large scale and complex projects most efficiently? Project Management

  • Project networks
  • Critical path analysis
  • Time costing methods
  • Critical path methods (CPM)
  • Project evaluation and review techniques (PERT)
Whereto locate new facilities?

What will be the most efficient layout?

Facilities Layout and Location

  • Location model
  • Facilities layout problem
  • Patterns of flow
  • Activity relationship chart
  • Product vs process layouts
How should quality be defined?

How can it be achieved?

Quality and Reliability

  • Conformance to requirements
  • Total quality management (TQM)
  • Control chart design
  • Acceptance sampling
  • Six sigma
  • Design of experiments