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Article Review 1: Operations Management - Essay Example

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One of the growing concerns, like in other areas of business, is sustainability. The fact is that businesses gain significantly from…
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Article Review 1: Operations Management
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Prof’s Green Operations Management Operations Management has a fairly long and established history, but like all aspects of the business world it is constantly changing. One of the growing concerns, like in other areas of business, is sustainability. The fact is that businesses gain significantly from sustainability at every level of their business, from office management to production facilities. Sustainability often allows for lower costs (conservation) while also being good press and typically making investors happy. In the article “Sustainable Operations Management, Paul Kleindorfer, Kaylan Singhal, and Luk Wassenhove attempt to describe how to make sustainability fit with traditional goals of operations management officers in a business.
This article first describes the history and origins of operations management in order to describe the way sustainable initiatives might effect them. It focuses highly on supply chain models, beginning by describing how the relationships between suppliers and producers were revolutionized in the 1980s by JITs, followed by the improvements made between producers and distributors in the 1990s such as ECR. I then goes on to discuss the changes that CRM made in the 2000s, changing fundamentally the relationships between retailers and distributors and customers. The crux of this article argues that one of the main functions of operations management has been supply chain relationships, and that sustainability is always desirable in an effective supply chain, so essentially operations management has always been involved with sustainability.
This article gave an excellent overview of the history of operations management. It devoted nearly half its length to this purpose, but through this demonstrated that operations management has always been shifting, and that sustainability was not only a part of the historical nature of operations management, but is an essential part of its future.
It was weak, however, in providing concrete directions for the future. Though it argues that sustainability will be a key issue in operations management, it fails to actually accomplish its goal and integrate operations management objectives with sustainability, or really form a cohesive argument as to why sustainability should be a serious concern of operations management, other than the amorphous topic of corporate citizenship.
This article discussed the problem of relating operations management to other objectives outside of their normal and traditional mould. This fits into the course because it shows the expansive role that operations management can play.
The conclusions reached by this article were that operations management have been leaders in many of the most important changes the business community, including executing strategies, modeling and measuring action-outcome links and so forth (Kleindorfer et al 2005). It seems to use this to posit that operations management can also take a leading role in sustainability, something of a questionable conclusion based on the fact that the article fail to identify many ways that they can be leaders in the area outside of supply chain theories, which have already been looking into sustainability issues for decades (because waste is always fundamentally bad in a supply chain). Though the article does provide a few options for future research, it fails to actually synthesize traditional OM roles with sustainability, its stated purpose.
Works Cited
Childe, S. J. (2009). Operations management research agenda. Production Planning & Control, 20(5), 383-384. doi: 10.1080/09537280903059625
Pergamon Flexible Learning. (2005). Quality and operations management. New York: Routledge
Kleindorfer, P. R., Singhal, K., & Wassenhove, L. N. (2005). Sustainable operations management. Production and Operations Management, 14(4), 482-492. doi: 10.1111/j.1937-5956.2005.tb00235.x Read More
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