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MG2135 Operations Management


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Assessment Title:State-of-the-art Literature Review, Individual Company Analysis
Module Leader:Dr. Behzad Hezarkhani
Distribution Date:TBA
Submission Deadline:12 noon on Monday 15th August 2022
Feedback by:TBC
Contribution to overall module assessment:100%
Indicative student time working on assessment:80 Hours
Word or Page Limit (if applicable):2500 Words (not including references, abstract, table of contents, and appendices)
Assessment Type (individual or group):Individual

Main Objective of the assessment

To write a report that critically analyses and reflects on an operations management theme; and provides a company analysis from an operations management perspective.


Description of the Assessment

The individual coursework assignment relates directly to the learning outcomes of this module and should consist of two parts – A, and B:

PART A: STATE-OF-THE-ART REVIEW (1000 words, 40% weighting)

In Part A, provide a state-of-the-art review of a major operations management topic (examples listed below) specifically discussing the existing body of knowledge, trends, opportunities and challenges in this field using up-to-date academic journal articles.

A state-of-the-art review should consider the current research in the given area or concerning the given topic, but also reflect on the relevant historical development. It often summarises current and emerging educational trends, research priorities and standardisations in a particular field of interest. The review must aim to provide a critical survey of the extensive literature produced in the past decade, a synthesis of current thinking in the field. It may offer

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new perspectives on an issue or point out an area in need of further research. The review must report on the key findings and insights generated by extant research in the area.

For the review, select only one of the major operations management fields and focus on that. Some examples are given below:

  • Performance improvement techniques (in relation to specific performance dimensions) – e.g., delivery planning for improving speed
  • Innovative design of operations processes (in manufacturing, service, logistics, etc.) – e.g., agile prototyping in manufacturing
  • Supply network design: outsourcing versus insourcing – e.g., decision-making criteria for outsourcing
  • Disrupting technologies for operations – e.g., 3D printing, or, Internet of Things (IoT)
  • Inventory planning and control – e.g., inventory management of fast moving versus slow moving goods
  • Supplier and procurement management – e.g., supplier selection methodologies
  • Operations that support corporate social responsibility – e.g., end-of-life recycling management
  • Reverse logistics – e.g., collection network design
  • Sustainable operations – e.g., carbon footprint reduction in logistics
  • Service operations management – e.g., operations management in healthcare, hospitality, etc.
  • Service quality management – e.g., statistical quality control, TQM, etc.

IMPORTANT NOTE 1: The literature review should focus on “operations management” aspect of the topic, rather than strategic, entrepreneurial, ethical, or other managerial lenses.

IMPORTANT NOTE 2: If the topic of your choice is not among the options above, you should confirm it by contacting the module leader.

To conduct the analysis and review, search and use journal articles/papers published in high ranked academic journals. Examples include:

  • Journal of Operations Management
  • Production and Operations Management
  • Management Science
  • Manufacturing and Service Operations Management
  • International Journal of Production Economics
  • International Journal of Operations and Production Management
  • Supply Chain Management: An International Journal
  • International Journal of Production Research
  • Production Planning and Control
  • Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management

NOTE: The academic journal ranking lists published by Chartered Association of Business Schools (ABS) give a good reference for determining the rankings of academic business/management journals.

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Finally, present your state-of-the-art review in 750 words in the chosen operations management field. Pay attention to referencing style and consistency.

PART B: COMPANY ANALYSIS (1500 words, 60% weighting)

In Part B, you are expected to critically analyse the operations and management processes of one of the UK-based Manufacturing companies, from an operations management perspective. You are required to assess the company using the concepts, tools and techniques studied in this module.

Once you have selected the retailer you would like to examine, prepare a short report of 1250 words (not including words in figures) encompassing the operations management principles covered in module. Please make sure you include the following operations management concepts in your analysis:

  • A brief background of the chosen company
    • An overview of the company’s operations (or the specific area of your focus, e.g., procurement or distribution); use process mapping tools to illustrate this
    • A critical analysis of the operations transformation processes for the product / service of the company. If the company has more than one product / service, you may focus on one of them.
    • Performance management and KPIs in the company (or the specific area of your focus) along with a trade-off analysis among the different KPIs
    • An evaluation of the company’s operations in terms of two specific operations management themes discussed in lectures (refer to the “study themes” in the study guide)
    • An application of appropriate tools and techniques to analyse the complex operational issues of the company and (where appropriate) development of viable courses of action (tools and techniques are different concepts, diagrams, tables provided in each chapter of the core reading book)
    • An analysis of current operational challenges facing the company and recommendation for potential improvements in companies operations.

Overall Requirements for Submissions:

  • References: A “References” section is required to be included at the end of the coursework. This section will include the details of all the references used in the coursework (minimum five journal articles and other articles of your choice) as per Brunel University Library’s referencing style.
  • Appendix: Additionally, you may include an “Appendix” section after the “References” section. This section will not be considered for calculating the number of words.
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  • Total Word Count: The assignment should be completed in report format of no more than 2500 words in total not including references, title page, words in figures, and appendices.

Assessment Criteria

UG mark bands, degree equivalent and grade point bands [Senate Regulation 2] are:

Indicative Mark BandDegree class equivalentGradeGrade Point
90 and above1A*17
29 and belowFailF1

Submission Instructions

Coursework must be submitted electronically via the University’s WISEflow system. The required file format for this report is Adobe PDF. Your student ID number must be used as the file name (e.g. 0123456.pdf). You must ensure that you upload your file in the correct format and use the College’s electronic coursework coversheet. Please note that submissions of ‘.pages / .docx etc’ documents will not be accepted and must be converted to approved format.

The electronic coursework coversheet must be completed and included at the beginning of all coursework submissions prior to submitting on WISEflow.

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Marking criteria:

CriteriaA (A*, A+, A, A-)B (B+, B, B-)C (C+, C, C-)D (D+, D, D-)E/F (E+, E, F)
Content (60%): correctness and completeness of analysis;Evidence of excellent and comprehensive research into the subject matter. All analyses are correct and interpreted at an exceptional level. The examples and theories are relevant to the assessment task.Evidence of very good research into the subject matter. All analyses are correct and interpreted at an excellent. The examples and theories are relevant to the assessment task.Evidence of good research into the subject matter. All analyses are correct and there is a high level evidenced by interpretation of theories and facts. The examples chosen are, for the most part, relevant to the assessment taskEvidence of satisfactory research into the subject matter. Most of analysis is correct and there is some evidence of sufficient interpretation of theories and facts. The examples chosen are, for the most part, reasonably relevant to the assessment task.There is no evidence of satisfactory research into the subject matter. Analysis is incorrect and/or incomplete. The examples chosen are likely not to be reasonably relevant to the assessment task.
Writing quality and style (20%): narrative; grammar and punctuation; spelling; language use; lengthThe writing quality and style is excellent. There is an excellent narrative. The grammar and punctuation are error-free. There are no spelling mistakes or incorrectly-used words. There are no long,The writing quality and style is very good. There is a very good narrative. The grammar and punctuation are near error-free. There are very few, if any, spelling mistakes or incorrectly used words. There areThe writing quality and style is good. There is a good narrative. The grammar and punctuation is reasonable. There are a few spelling mistakes, incorrectly-used words, and/or long, confusedThe writing quality and style is adequate. There is a reasonable narrative. The grammar and punctuation is adequate. There are a number of spelling mistakes, incorrectly- used words, and/orMany, or all, of the following apply: poor writing quality and style; poor narrative; the grammar and punctuation is poor; there are many spelling mistakes, incorrectly used words, and/or
confused or unwieldyvery few, if any, long,or unwieldy sentenceslong, confused orlong, confused or
sentences whichconfused or unwieldywhich detract fromunwieldy sentencesunwieldy sentences
detract from legibility.sentences whichlegibility. Materialwhich detract fromwhich detract from
Material taken fromdetract from legibility.taken from otherlegibility. Material takenlegibility; material taken
other sources isMaterial taken fromsources is wellfrom other sources isfrom other sources is
accurately paraphrased;other sources is veryparaphrased; theonly adequatelyinadequately
the text/style/contentwell paraphrased; theoverall text/style/paraphrased; some ofparaphrased; the
is that of the writer. It isoverall text/style/content is generallythe overallreferences are either
within the word limit ofcontent is for the mostthat of the writer. It istext/style/content isnon-existent or
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2500 words and is not
part that of the writer.within the word limit ofthat of the writer butinadequately cited and
less than 2250 words inIt is within the word2500 words and is notwith some of the stylepresented; it is either
length.limit of 2500 words andless than 2250 words inof the original source(s)above the word limit of
 is not less than 2250length.evident. It is within the2500 words and is not
 words in length. word limit of 2500less than 2250 words in
   words and is not lesslength.
   than 2250 words in 
Structure (10%):The account isVery goodThe coursework isThe structure of the textMany, or all, of the
segmentation;presented in ademonstration of thepresented in ais adequatelyfollowing apply: the
sequencingprofessional manner;aforementionedsatisfactory reporthighlighted by use ofintroduction may be
 there is very clear andcriteria, but lacks theformat, meeting mostappropriate sectionsmissing or, if present,
 logical sequencing.clarity in structure andof the aforementionedand paragraphs; there islacks an adequate
  presentation.criteria; there may be areasonably clear andoverview and
   few limitations in thelogical sequencing.motivation for what
   logical flow between follows; the structure of
   the sections, making the text is inadequate;
   parts of argument less the ordering lacks a
   easy to follow. clear and logical
References /Excellent use ofVery good use ofGood use of referencesAdequate use ofWeak use of references
Referencing (10%)references which arereferences which arewhich are for the mostreferences which maywhich are not
 accurately cited andaccurately cited andpart accurately citednot always beaccurately cited or
 presented in the textpresented in the textand presented in theaccurately cited orpresented in the text or
 and in the referencesand in the referencestext and in thepresented in the text orin the references
 Section with consistent style.section.references the references sectionsection.

Academic Misconduct, Plagiarism and Collusion

Any coursework or examined submission for assessment where plagiarism, collusion or any form of cheating is suspected will be dealt with according to the University processes which are detailed in Senate Regulation 6.

You can access information about plagiarism here.

The University regulations on plagiarism apply to published as well as unpublished work, collusion and the plagiarism of the work of other students. Please ensure that you fully understand what constitutes plagiarism before you submit your work.

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College’s Coursework Submission Policy

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Extenuating Circumstances Policy

Please refer to the College’s Student Handbook for information relating to extenuating circumstances and procedures.