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Introduction - Operations & Project Management For An Effective Business Organisation
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Organisational development is considered as the significant concept that ensures the effective growth of the organisation. Therefore, creating the project management system, the approach of organisational development enhances the practice of systematic changes in believing the systemic changes, attitudes, and the values of the employees for the growth of the company. The current study aims to demonstrate the theories and principles in relation to Operations and Project Management for an effective Business Organisation. Considering the case study of Microsoft, the performance management will be analysed as well. In addition to that as per the design and structure in relation to the organisational development, the study will highlight the challenges and will employ the strategies for developing the organisational development.
Part 1: Operations Management
Introducing the organisation
Microsoft, whose existence began on 4 April 1975, is a multinational information technology firm. Microsoft seems to have become the largest software corporation, founded by Harvard College dropout Bill Gates and his teenage friend Paul Allen. It is one of the world's most expensive businesses as well (Content.dsp.co.uk, 2021). In 2011, Microsoft purchased Skype for $8.5 billion, the biggest transaction in the existence of Microsoft. In order to contend with Apple's Facetime and Google's Voice, Microsoft acquired Skype. Microsoft is going to expand Skype to its Outlook, Xbox and Windows smartphone products. Microsoft's SQL Server 2012, based on reasonable, has featured several changes to older iterations. This included Constantly Available, which offered options for enhancing the reliability of the server and the simple setup and functionality of the cloud (Content.dsp.co.uk, 2021). Performance and fully programmable changes were also included in functionality. Assistance for all variants and functionality of Microsoft SQL Server is offered by DSP-Explorer throughout a wide range of Microsoft windows.
Critical review of implementing the operations management principles
The management of operations refers to the mechanism in which planning, coordination, and supervision are concerned. This system ensures much greater profitability and productivity enhancement within a production operation. In regard to the operation process of Microsoft, the following principles could be considered as appropriate.
Taylor’s Scientific Management principles:
In the context of operation, Frederick Taylor was of the opinion that management was a discipline. He said that there were unique regulations that could be adapted to the management analysis through which the desired outcomes could be achieved. He promoted five principles of scientific management in this respect (Hill and Van Buren, 2018). According to the principles of scientific management, it can be analysed that scientific management means applying a reasoned method to management decisions (consisting of data analysis, data collection, and decision-making depending on the outcomes of those analyses). Also, It discards all unscientific methods at the same time, such as a thumb rule, a hit or miss adherence, and an attitude to trial - and - error. The four principles of Taylor are as follows:
1.Replace work with "rule of thumb," or basic practice and rational thinking. Through using the experimental method to instead research work can decide its most appropriate time to conduct a specific task.
2. Instead of simply assigning employees to just any task, based on skill and motivation, assign job requirements and prepare employees to work at full performance.
3. Track the output of staff, as well as provide guidance and oversight to assure that the most productive methods of operating are used (Ebert and Freibichler, 2017).
4. Assign the work among managers and employees so that administrators spend their time preparing and training, helping employees to fulfill their duties in a better manner.
Based on the above discussion, it can be stated that in order to implement Taylor’s Scientific Management, the operation managers of the concerned firm need to focus on the issues rather than techniques. As such, for avoiding the problem-solving tools. Apart from that, the operations leaders need to assess how to comply with all fundamental fundamentals, since this is the secret to the success of output (Hill and Van Buren, 2018). Herein in order to accomplish the desired outcomes, it is essential to ensure the reliability of BOMs, inventory data, and other specific tasks. In addition to that staff morale could be a significant driver of the growth of the concerned company. In order to be motivated at work, managers need to be able to encourage their subordinates in a broad manner.
Six Sigma principles:
Six-sigma is a methodology that eliminates errors of certain types in systems. Any company's motive is to please consumers and make more profit. By decreasing the inconsistencies in the procedure, these intentions may be resolved.
By fixing the flaws, the corporation will manufacture more goods and raise profit. By decreasing variance in the system, the corporation will deliver everything the consumer wants for a service or product. To address an issue, Six Sigma employs standard techniques generally (Honda et al. 2018). Considering the issues of Microsoft’s operation management, it is identified that the principles of Six Sigma can be employed by its effective principles. Following are the principles of Six Sigma methodologies.
i) Pay more attention on customer requirements:
"The "product" from the perspective of consumers is specified in the preliminary stages of the Six Sigma process. Each customer understands functional improvement. A company does have to assess quality in such a comparable pattern as its consumers do. The consumer may determine consistency by meeting the requirements of the consumer sector.
ii) Using data to classify the operation variance:
There are two kinds of differences in the procedure; alteration of the special cause as well as difference of design. The difference in special causes is affected by natural variables. Linkage disequilibrium occurring throughout the mechanism is statistical anomaly. Six Sigma attempts to decrease the difference in the specific source. Understating the mechanism is needed to determine the root cause of the variance.
iii) Continuously refining the method to time management:
Once the root factors have been found, make adjustments to remove the method variance. Abnormalities in the mechanism are also excluded. In particular, search for opportunities to eliminate steps which do not deliver value to the customer (Antony et al. 2017). Define as well as eradicate variance.
iv) Involve individuals at all stages of administration and procedure:
Six Sigma has been built on the basis of strong teams. Good teams are made up of individuals who accept responsibility for the Six Sigma process. People in Microsoft require experience in the techniques of Six Sigma. The creation of a cross-functional team of members with diverse backgrounds can help to distinguish differences.
v) Be versatile and in-depth:
Six Sigma involves ability to adapt from a number of perspectives. The administrative system of Microsoft has to consider positive improvements.
Reviewing the effectiveness of Operations Management with other business functions
Applying Taylor's science management methods would have been a restriction on the future creation of innovative strategies that would theoretically impede Microsoft, since many of its strategic tactics are focused on innovation by first-mover leverage. It will thus seem that science administration is unlikely to be successful in certain areas, particularly in areas whereby initial thinking advancement is required (Antony et al. 2017). However, it should be remembered that the principle of differentiation persists in fields such as engineering and production, where creativity is necessary, as project managers only formulate and pursue ongoing design.
There are several Six Sigma methods at Microsoft. Much as Six Sigma searches out redundant procedures to increase performance, improvements in Microsoft's operations management have made it possible for a more structured corporate structure. Microsoft already has a good grasp of the rise and fall of customer demand. Six Sigma highlights the principles of satisfying the needs of the consumer. After that, Microsoft has recognised the requirement and answered to it. This really is the secret to attaining greatness for any company, whether that be in terms of process management, waste management or customer services. Microsoft is only one of the examples of how to do this well.
Based on the discussion made above, it is to be stated that the operation department of Microsoft needs to prepare a continuous development plan. In support of this statement, the following critique has been made regarding the operations management principles.
Critique of Taylor’s Scientific Management principles:
The alleged loss of emotional respect is one of the most common critiques of Taylorism. It considers the individual a component of the manufacturing chain at a degree equivalent to the resources he/she utilizes in the push to maximize physical productivity. For example, strips himself or herself of all right to think and function independently. Management takes over all thought and planning, based on which the task of the worker is restricted to the concurrent processes of repetitive and condensed work flows in accordance with productivity goals. Taylorism disregards the subjective motivation of the employee and their desire to obtain personal gratification from their work by believing that equal reward would inspire staff to perform in an optimal manner.
Critique of Six Sigma principles:
Among the most recurring problems is that Six Sigma doesn't really deliver something fresh and unique and is made popular merely as a promotional tool. Six Sigma was influenced by previous research in the aspects of quality assurance and incorporated the best aspects of comprehensive performance versions. However, it provides its very own distinctive property in measurements such as deficiencies per million possibilities. A further critique is that, instead of adopting a proactive and constructive approach to issues, Six Sigma is much more of a corrective measure’s method. Six Sigma, furthermore, requires the education and training of the existing staff as well as the development of a professional network that focuses on efficiency, thoroughness and cost development strategies.
Based on the discussion made above, the operation management system of Microsoft is recommended to prepare a continuous improvement plan in the following manner.
Continuous improvement plan:
Recommendations of Plan Do Check Act (PDCA):
Based on this continuous improvement plan, Microsoft is expected to solve the operational issues as for implementing the solution in a methodological and rigorous manner. The four stage of this management system will be as follows:
Microsoft needs to understand and identify the opportunity and the issues through this continuous improvement plan. As such, if the products’ standard of the concerned brand fails to appear as a high quality, by following this cycle, the company will be able to go through the positive aspect of the marketing process in order to get the better results (Bereskie et al. 2017).
After identifying a potential solution, the operational management of the concerned organisation is recommended to examine a safe test through its small-scale pilot project. As such, enhancing the proposed changes as for achieving the desired outcomes, the managers are expected to experience a minimal disruption to the rest of the operation (CHANGE, 2018). As for example, considering the particular demographic, they are expected to run the pilot project in order to show whether the changes are worked and implemented in a successful manner.
In this stage, the results of the pilot project are required to be analysed against the expectations of the operational managers as for assessing the idea to get success.
In this stage, the operation management needs to be implemented by the solutions considered by the operational managers (Bereskie et al. 2017). As a result, it is expected that the product or the improved process will have a new baseline through which the managers as well as the entire entity will be able to look for the appropriate ways to make it better and successful.
Introducing the cross-rail project
Crossrail would be the first public transport infrastructure programme in Europe which is one of the single biggest construction projects in the United Kingdom. The Crossrail project continues bringing to the Elizabeth Line. Because the building of the new railway commenced in 2009, more than 15,000 males and females have worked for the company and more than 120 million opening days have been accomplished (crossrail.co.uk, 2021). The Crossrail scheme has offered more than 1,000 work placements. Cross-rail began evaluating the latest railway during 2018 to ensure that the construction and implementation of the transportation networks met the specifications of the Elizabeth Branch. Crossrail requires trains to operate for several millions of kilometres on constructed rail to achieve the high amount of stability and performance before the passenger store opens. Development of the railway continues and Crossrail plans the implementation to be done by the end of 2020 even before completion of the central part of the Elizabeth Branch. Crossrail is providing new stations to Paddington, Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, Farringdon, Liverpool Street, Whitechapel, Canary Wharf, Custom House, Woolwich as well as Abbey Wood (crossrail.co.uk, 2021). Each one of the ten new stations would have its own distinctive style, built by various architects, representing the climate and tradition of the local region.
Five stages of the PLC to the cross-rail project
Forecasting or plan-driven solutions through adaptive or change-driven approaches are all possible project life cycles. The parameters are described at the outset of the project in a predictive life cycle, and any scope changes are control conditions. Here, the product is built over several iterations in an adaptive life cycle, and the precise scope of each iteration is specified only as the replication progresses. Considering the Cross-rail Project, it can be suggested that although the concerned project is unique and highly unpredictable, their standard framework consists of same generic lifecycle structure, consisting of following phases:
The Initiation Phase: Starting of the project
In Cross-rail project, the Initiation Process is responsible for defining and authorizing the project. The project manager establishes a Project Charter based on the details provided. The Project Charter establishes the project's authority and outlines the project's key specifications. It contains information such as: 1. Project’s purpose, vision, and mission 2. Measurable objectives and success criteria 3. Elaborated project description, conditions, and risks 4. Name and authority of the project sponsor 5. Concerned stakeholders
The Planning Phase: Organizing and Preparing The goal of this phase is to carry out a clear plan for where the Cross-rail project will be carried out and how it will be successful. There are two parts of project planning: 1. Planning for the Future 2. Planning for Implementation The overall approach to the concerned project is to establish the project objectives during strategic planning. The ways to put such decisions into action are found during implementation planning.
The Execution Phase: Carrying out the project - In Cross-rail project, the assumptions and activities identified during the planning process are enforced during this phase. During this process, the project manager is responsible for overseeing the project and ensuring that no mistakes occur. Monitoring and regulating are other terms for this operation. He moves on to the next stage after the client, sponsor, and stakeholder are all satisfied. The concerned project needs to have defined strategies and activities to help complete the series within the organization's guidelines during the preparation process of project management. For example, crosstail proect can establish procedures for interacting with third-party vendors providing critical raw materials.
The entire process could be followed through below stage:
Managing people: It is indeed important to ensure that the team follows the cossrail rproject plan. However it is not the only responsibility. It is indeed critical that the project team to be also inspired, empowerd, and rejoice on the squad. This will motivate them to continue to work hard. Encouraging a fair amount of internal conflict will be emphasised as well.
Distributing information to stakeholders and clients: During the project's implementation process, the cross rail project team needs to include the customers and partners. Users can avoid costly misunderstandings and delays by keeping stakeholders informed. The project execution process of the project life cycle is often the most time-consuming. Thereby facilitating positive contact and openness during the process rather than vanishing for weeks or months while working on the finished product.
Making project execution a priority: Although it may appear that carrying out the strategy is the easy part, given the amount of effort that went through the planning process of the chosen project, the fact is that effectively completing a complicated project requires deliberate, consistent effort. A job management app will consolidate all correspondence, teamwork, and project information into a single, intuitive location, allowing the tam to see how far the concerned project has progressed at a glance.
The Termination Phase: Closing the project
This is the final step of the Cross-rail project, and it signifies the project's official completion. When working with upper management or other people who are unfamiliar with the project, this general life cycle structure is used. Some people can mix it up with project management process groups, however, the latter includes project-specific activities.
Critique of the the application of the PLC concept
Despite the advantages of PLC for cross-rail project, some adverse sides are also identified that are as follows.
- High cost: With an already limited budget of cross-rail project, conducting and ensuring the details of all sessions of the cycle can increase the cost. Direct costs are charges that are paid solely to a single project in cross rail project management. Wages for project team members, resource costs to manufacture actual objects, fuel costs for vehicles, and funds invested to overcome any project-specific threats are all examples.
- Complexity PLC can make the Cross-rail project look more complex, as there are many steps and activities to follow. Also, rigidity in plan can create a stressful environment. Complexity's mission is to report on significant developments in the scientific study of complex structures of the cross rail project. Interactions between entities in complex systems provide new knowledge that is not representative of the original or boundary conditions, limiting their predictive power.
- Lack of creativity PLC can suppress the creativity of the Cross-rail Project. As such, the deadlines, stressful environment pre-defined activities and procedure may not let the creativity of the staff to sprout out. Project managers of crossrail who are effective develop a combination of technological, interpersonal, and intellectual skills that enable them to evaluate scenarios and communicate appropriately. Creativity, on the other hand, can be described as a tool that can help the project manager be more successful in applying these skills for the concerned project.
- WBS: In the context of operation management, the key approach to complete a multi-phase, dynamic project is the job breakdown structure. This makes it easier to easily and efficiently break down and complete massive programs. The goal is to increase the efficiency of a big business. The division into smaller portions of the job results in multiple team members performing the task simultaneously, thereby enhancing collaboration between departments and promoting overall project management. (Tri Mardiani, 2020) A theoretical framework describes and divides the mission into small logical sections for a work disintegration. It also encourages the demonstration of the worker's particular skills such that he is completely able to focus on the work carried out within the time specified. It facilitates development and rewards and strengthens teamwork to increase job satisfaction and ensure the efficiency and results of the business.
Based on the discussion made above as well as the structure of the WBS, it is to be stated that the project manager (CrossRail) decides the design of the project and thus establishes a project schedule and a timetable at this level (Nicholas et al., 2017). It establishes effective processes and policies for providing the project to the client. This takes account of the time and budget mentioned. Planning also requires the determination of available capital. The time taken to complete the project also takes into account.
- Gantt Chart: The company has to monitor several tasks to ensure that they are carried out on schedule in order to complete a project successfully. If the time period is met or the mission is not done, the consequences on the remainder of the project could be knock-on. As a result, it could arrive late and take even longer (Bondarenko et al., 2018). That's why it's good to see something to be done and to be conscious of any action at a glance. This knowledge is physically conveyed by Gantt maps. They identify all the activities involved in a project and demonstrate their order on a calendar. This thorough reflection helps to make the timetable workable, appoint the best people to each job and have workarounds before the company starts. They can help the company build functional elements of a project, such as minimal time and activities that must be accomplished before others can begin. In addition, the crucial way is to define the series of assignments to be performed independently on a timely basis if the whole project is to be delivered on schedule. Lastly, the employees and donors will keep the company aware about success for them (Kerzne, 2018). Only edit the map to display the changes in schedule and their consequences or use it to report completion of essential tasks.
- The effectiveness of the PLC in application to cross rail: In terms of effectiveness, the PLC passes a warning back to the fence and the checkpoints. When the train leaves, the fence and the obstacles return, and the route is open for vehicles and pedestrians to pass. PLCs are chosen since they are quite scalable, cost-effective, space-efficient, eliminate variability as well as decrease errors.
- Programme Theory/Logic Model
With the goal of a fuzzy strategy this is critical to evaluate the numerical importance of the functional capability by reasoning, the contextual relationship between the characteristics of the railway station as well as the possible risk factors of the Cross-rail project. Following is the assumed logic model for the Cross-rail Project.
It is to be concluded that in order to succeed in the CrossRail project, the team effort is required in a broad manner. On that note, team members can be given limited or immense tasks and duties. Still, at the end of the project management, it needs to be presented as a collaborative team effort considering which every role and duty of the managers could be implemented successfully. This initiative is the driving force behind project progress. Two facets of a coin are Project Manager and Project Management team. Therefore, both the project manager and the team of CrossRail need to function as an effective team to be competitive in the concerned project in the context of operation management.