Make in India: Importance of Operations Management

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “make in India” call to the world community to spur growth in the country’s GDP is sure to provide an increased impetus to the cause of excellence in operations management, observes Prof. Pramod K Gupta.

In his Independence Day address, Prime Minister Narendra Modi not only emphasized upon the need for some vital socio-cultural reforms but also stressed on the need for exemplary growth in the production of goods and services. In case, India gains its much awaited entry into the league of developed nations in the next decade, this address would certainly be remembered for his clarion call to the world for the need to “Make in India”.

Apart from several other imponderables, the growth story of India in the next decade would depend on how well managers in India adapt and fine-tune their operations in making and delivering their offerings to the global consumers. This underlines the emerging role and exponential importance of operations management in future. Operations management is a specialized area of management which concerns itself with creation and delivery of products and services of a company. This is a challenging and vital function in all types of organisations ranging from manufacturing and retailing to services.

Importance of Operations Management:

The efficiency and effectiveness of any organisation revolves around how well it manages its operations. This is all about making the processes work right. It calls for a greater degree of integration of resources with the capabilities of workforce, as well as with the myriad supply chain management functions, affecting the output. It enables an organisation to position the product in the right place in the right way keeping in view the critical cost and time considerations. Operations managers are critical lynchpins responsible to get the product manufactured or service offered in the most appropriate way and thus, serves the interests of both the organisation and the customer.

Role of Operations:

Operations management supplements all the other activities of an organisation. The research and development activity needs to be focused on developing a product that is the need of the hour and which could garner enough market share. The finance function addresses the cost considerations, and makes a forecast about productions in terms of fixed, variable and overhead costs. The task to hire people with appropriate knowledge, skills and abilities to meet the organisational objectives is catered to by the human resources department. Evidently, the operations department integrates all these functions and reconciles the varying requirements of the plethora of organisational functions in creating products and services according to correct specifications, utilizing allocated financial and human resource.

Qualifications Required:

To become an operations manager, one should obtain a degree in one’s chosen field. For quick progression in their careers, the technical graduates are required to acquire enhanced qualifications in operations management. The best major an MBA scholar equipped with technical qualifications can pursue is operations management. Specialisation in operations management and its allied fields such as logistics and supply chain management has gained prominence in all business schools in India and abroad.

Pay Package:

A young engineering graduate may draw a salary ranging between Rs 3 to 5 Lakhs per annum. On acquiring enhanced qualifications like MBA, s/he may with an experience of 3-5 years, could expect an average salary in the range of Rs. 6 to 9 Lakhs per annum.

Job Opportunities:

Presently, the pool of operations managers in India is severely constrained due to enhanced economic activity witnessed during past two decades. The shortage of skilled manpower in critical sectors viz. manufacturing, warehousing, supply chain and logistics has also been recognised by the government by their inclusion in the national skills development programme. Due to acute shortage of skilled manpower in the operations management at all levels, a professional with the skill sets mentioned above, has many options across the spectrum of industries from infrastructure and retailing to services. With quantum increase expected in the manufacturing sector, the options would only increase disproportionately for the professionals in this field.

The author teaches at the Asia-Pacific Institute of Management, New Delhi.