• Unit 3: Operations and Process Analysis

    This unit covers operations analysis of business functions with an emphasis on process optimization and operational efficiencies. The tools and methods presented here can help organizations understand their processes better and to evolve into leaner producers and manufacturers. By knowing where attention needs to be focused, businesses can effectively manage current and future challenges and maintain their competitive advantage. 

    Completing this unit should take you approximately 8 hours.

    • 3.1: Process Analysis

      Business process analysis is a method used to increase both efficiency and effectiveness of a given process. Ultimately this approach assesses how well the process achieves its overall goal. An organization can determine whether or not they are operating at maximum capacity and providing the best possible customer experience.

      • 3.1.1: Process Flow Charting

        Process flow charting is a diagram that represents a workflow or process. From beginning to end, each step is visually represented by a shape and connected by directional arrows. This representation aids in seeing the interdependent relationships that currently exist and can help to inform of flaws, bottlenecks, or unnecessary steps. 

      • 3.1.2: Performance Analysis Measures

        Strategically measuring, managing, and analyzing performance is critical to every business. Performance measures serve many purposes from an accountability perspective, driving decision-making, as well as a learning mechanism to achieve improved results.

    • 3.2: Production Analysis

      Production can be defined as a step-by-step process to achieve a desired outcome. Understanding the step-by-step process and associated inputs and outputs of production is the essence of production analysis. Through this model, it is possible to numerically describe a process while quantifying inputs and outputs. 

      • 3.2.1: Lean Production Systems

        Modern businesses need to be agile and efficient to remain competitive in the marketplace. A lean production system seeks to maximize resources, increase quality, and eliminate waste. Furthermore, this constant drive for efficiency results in a higher return on investment for the company, which is indicated in overall bottom-line profits.

      • 3.2.2: Performance Analysis Measures

        Measuring, analyzing, and managing performance in producing a good is key to sustaining success for any business. Performance measures serve to analyze productivity, determine time-to-market for a product, project time to develop new products, and maintain product quality, to name a few of the key purposes. In addition, break-even analysis allows for cost comparisons across a range of scenarios, including different levels of production, different production time frames, and alternate production input sources.

    • 3.3: Services Analysis

      As a business grows, services provide inputs into the production cycle to support and stimulate growth. Services can be financial and business related and are frequently instrumental to an organization. This intangible manufacturing component is easily overlooked because it does not occupy a physical presence. 

    • 3.4: Waiting and Queues

      The pause in a process when an item is being produced is known as waiting. An accumulation of these items waiting in line is known as a queue. Ultimately, this may create congestion within a system which wastes time and potentially affects stages before and after its pause. 

    • Study Guide: Unit 3

      We recommend reviewing this Study Guide before taking the Unit 3 Assessment.

    • Unit 3 Assessment

      • Receive a grade