SHE Level 5
SCQF Credit Points 15.00
ECTS Credit Points 7.50
Module Code MMN226168
Module Leader Karen Fryer
School GCU London
Subject GCU London
  • A (September start)
  • B (January start)
  • C (May start)

Summary of Content

This module develops a critical appreciation of analysis tools and techniques available to managers for decision making. It focuses on the concept of operations management and how to detect weaknesses and strengths and how to improve it. The module stresses the inter-relationships of different aspects of performance through different qualitative and quantitative analysis approaches incl. financial analysis suitable for managers. The learning commences at the supply chain and value chain concepts and the requirement to synchronize these to operation management decisions relating to capacity and resource planning in order to optimize business performance. The concept of value shall be considered regarding the need for equally weighing effectiveness and efficiency objectives. Hence factors ranging from operational decisions such as outsourcing and location through to capacity/yield, management, and business/continuous improvement will be covered. Using operations management as a context for decision making, the module integrated different schools and approaches of operational analysis including financial analysis as well as systems thinking for well-informed holistic decision making. Integration of these different decision making concludes in a 360b0 appraisal of a company's strengths and weaknesses report suggesting management decisions underpinned by analysis.


-360 - Introduction to supply chain management and value chain concepts and role in operation management. - Operations or service design decisions e.g. outsourcing, location and layout. - Principles of operations and service management and their contribution to business performance. - Resource utilization: capacity, demand and also yield management. - Driving operational improvement and sustainability. - Role of the Finance function: the financial control role; the accounting requirements; the external market and supply chain responsibilities. - Understanding the Financial statements and value added. - The nature of finance strategy: Maximisation of shareholder wealth v profitability v management goals and application of this for alternative forms of organisations. - Investment: evaluating choices, measuring effectiveness. The link to procurement and supply chain management. The quantitative techniques utilised and their pros and cons. - Soft system thinking and associated methodologies for process and information flow mapping

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of the module the student should be able to:-1. Compare operation management and supply chain principles and assess their role in improving strategic and operational business performance. CW12. Understand and apply relevant financial analysis techniques for management decision making. CW13. Critically evaluate processes and information flows through systems thinking to inform management decision making. CW1

Teaching / Learning Strategy

The teaching and learning strategy will primarily focus upon the achievement of learning outcomes by the students. Theoretical concepts are taught through lectures and online resources. These concepts are further analysed, elaborated and applied in a series of seminars incorporating group discussions, case studies, and presentations. All class activity requires prior directed reading and preparation which will be available with online support. The teaching philosophy revolves around a part-time blended learning approach. In particular, GCU-Learn shall be used to provide a range of sophisticated learning resources, including discussion forums and the opportunity of providing to students over the internet, course materials, podcasts and a diverse range of learning and formative assessment resources. The core text includes access to online self-assessment questions, audio summaries, video clips, guided solutions and feedback for practice questions. Practical, hands-on examples of case studies will provide integration of the different analysis techniques towards a holistic view to inform management decision making. Students will have the opportunity to demonstrate their ability to triangulate different decision-making tools to appraise the operation of an organisation that is relevant to the student's context and/or chosen pathway specialisation. Students will have the opportunity to get formative feedback for the constituent components of their analysis before a final submission of their analysis and subsequent recommendations.

Indicative Reading

Core texts ARNOLD G., 2012 . Corporate Financial Management , 5 th ed., Harlow: Pearson SLACK N., BRANDON-JONES, A. & JOHNSTON R., 2016 . Operations Management , 8 th ed., Harlow: Pearson CURRY, A., FLETT, P., HOLLINGSWORTH, I., 2005. Managing Information & Systems: The Business Perspective , Routledge: London Relevant Texts AGUINIS H., 2012 . Performance Management , 3 rd ed., Harlow: Pearson ATRILL, P. & MCLANEY, E., 2018. Accounting and Finance for non-specialist s, 11 th ed., Harlow: Pearson BARNEY J. & CLARK D., 2007. Resource-Based Theory - Creating and Sustaining Competitive Advantage , Oxford University Press, Oxford. CHECKLAND, P., & SCHOLES, J., 2009. Soft Systems Methodology in Acton , Chichester: John Wiley & Sons. CHOPRA S., 2018 . Supply Chain Management: Strategy, Planning and Operations, 7 th ed., Harlow: Pearson SMITHER J. W. & LONDON M., 2009. Performance Management: Putting Research into Practice (JB SIOP Professional Practice Series) , Chichester: John Wiley & Sons. Journals: Journal of Operations Management Operations Management International Journal of Operations and Production Management

Transferrable Skills

Critical thought and problem solving; Independent work competence; planning, monitoring, reviewing and evaluating own learning and development; Planning, monitoring, reviewing and evaluating own learning and development; Group work; Communication talents that include written, oral, listening and presentation; Cognitive and intellectual talents Knowledge and understanding of the context of the subject and information retrieval talents Information retrieval talents.

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Lectures (PT) 24.00
Independent Learning (PT) 86.00
Assessment (PT) 40.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Course Work 01 n/a 100.00 50% 360 degree appraisal of a company's strengths and weaknesses