Schedule mock interviews on the Meeting Board, join the latest community discussions in our Consulting Q&A and find like-minded Case Partners to connect and practice with!

Can someone please explain in details what are "operations cases"? And how can someone prepare for this type of cases in particular?

operations cases
Recent activity on Aug 14, 2018
1 Answer
1.8 k Views
Louay asked on Aug 14, 2018
Solved more than 40+ cases offline

Overview of answers

Upvotes
  • Upvotes
  • Date ascending
  • Date descending
Best answer
Vlad
Expert
replied on Aug 14, 2018
McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School

Hi,

There are several types of operational cases that you may have:

1) Operational math problems. (e.g. Should we increase the speed of the elevator or just buy a second one? How should we reduce the queues? How should we increase the output of a factory?).

Structuring:

  • Usually, you have to look at the process (i.e. value chain). Even the most complicated systems have the inflows and outflows. Remember that the outflow is driven by the demand

The key concepts that you have to learn:

  • Capacity and utilization (both machine and people)
  • Reducing the demand to fit the capacity / increasing the volumes to cover fixed costs
  • Cycle time, Throughput time, Little's Law
  • How the does lowest cycle time influence the production? (Lead time = cycle time of the slowest process)
  • How can we mitigate the bottlenecks with low cycle time? (Buffer, Parallel process, speeding up)

2) Cost cutting cases

Structuring:

  • What is the cost composition and what are the biggest costs
  • Benchmarking of the biggest costs to find the improvement potential
  • Process improvements to meet the benchmarks
  • Costs and benefits of the proposed initiatives

The key concepts that you have to learn:

  • Internal / external benchmarking
  • Idle time
  • Core processes (usually are optimized) and the supporting processes (usually are cut)
  • Math structures (Frequency of operations * time per operation)
  • Other useful structures (e.g. people - process - technology)

I have not seen many of them available online. Feel free to reach me for further help with these cases.

Best

Was this answer helpful?
Vlad gave the best answer

Vlad

McKinsey / Accenture Alum / Got all BIG3 offers / Harvard Business School
429
Meetings
12,318
Q&A Upvotes
127
Awards
4.9
186 Reviews
How likely are you to recommend us to a friend or fellow student?
0 = Not likely
10 = Very likely
You are a true consultant! Thank you for consulting us on how to make PrepLounge even better!