Operations management degree programs are ideal for people interested in obtaining operations manager jobs or in enhancing their careers in business, government, nonprofit, or military settings. This page has details of the programs, where you can take them, the prospects after completion and more ...
A degree in operations management can be the ticket to employment in business, industry, consulting, or non-profit organizations. Any company that employs people and produces either products or services can benefit from the oversight that a professional manager can bring. This opens up the whole world of manufacturing, retail, service, and delivery of any kind.
The scope of this position can range over almost all of the practical day-to-day functioning of a business. Creating policy, implementing it, analyzing both production and markets, controlling inventory and quality, supervising personnel scheduling and relations, and promoting efficiency in production and distribution are all areas which an op manager can make a substantial difference to the bottom line.
Check the business management degree page for other similar progam areas.
Many schools offer operations management programs. Here are a few selected ones together with related degrees (others can be found using the search boxes on this page):
To become a manager of this type, you can pursue a bachelor's degree, a MBA with a focus on operating science, or a specific masters in operations management. There are many long-established programs at colleges and universities as well as many more recent online programs. Even community colleges offer courses that will lead to a degree.
Courses can include principles of general management, systems and product analysis, cost control, and industrial labor relations. Understanding how markets work, how to create a demand for an innovative product, and how eliminate time-wasting and man-power wasting defects are all important in the competition for a market share.
Even small businesses need management in this area, which may, of course, be supplied by the owner. However, once a business begins to handle a significant volume of products and services, customers, and employees, a designated person to coordinate all the details becomes almost indispensable.
As a simple example, consider a pest control company that must comply with all local, state, and federal regulations. The owner or head office may create the policies that ensure compliance, but the details may be left to the manager. By setting regular inspections of equipment and supplies, scheduling qualified technicians for specific jobs, and making sure all training is completed and certificates kept up to date, the manager can control the practical details of implementing policy requirements. Even what may look simple on the surface can be the result of expert decisions that increase efficiency and effectiveness. Back when fast food was new and the speed was part of the appeal, a worker at a McDonald's window had to process and hand over an order in two minutes or be fired. This actually happened to Miss Teen-Age Arizona while she was trying to work to pay for higher education. Behind that fast turn-over were a lot of ready-made hamburgers (of the exact depth for quick cooking), very efficient soda machines, and easy-fill fries boxes.
Specific operations management jobs (either as a staff member or as a consultant) can be in systems analysis, human resources, line production, quality control, market analysis, plant management, or engineering and design. The possibilities are almost endless. In fact, you can use the creativity you will need on the job to develop your own particular skill and sell it to an employer. Given the wide range of possible jobs, the operations management salary range is also wide: $31,000 to $117,000.
Walk in the footsteps of Henry Ford and Frank and Lilian Gilbreth or examine the Toyota production system to see what a huge difference an astute observer can make. Then consider an operations management degree for steady employment and a fascinating career.
Browse the schools below to find a suitable school and program. Request information from several schools and compare the admission requirements and course content before you choose a program.
This week's featured online schools are:
This week's featured program is:
This week's featured on-campus schools are:
Wanjira Kinuthia, Georgia State University
Stewart Marshall, The University of the West Indies
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