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What are typical operations cases (aka process improvement case) ?

Valentin asked on May 23, 2017 - 5 answers
Received and accepted an offer from Deloitte Monitor Belgium, starting on th 1st of November.

Are there specific frameworks/rules to know for handling an operations oriented case ?

Thank you

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Originally answered:

Operations case?

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Vlad
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replied on Apr 11, 2018
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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. Even the most complicated systems have the inflows and outflows

The key concepts that you have to learn:

  • Capacity and utilization (both machine and people)
  • 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)

Feel free to reach me for further help with these cases.

Best

Originally answered:

Types of operational issues

Sidi
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replied on May 09, 2018
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Hi Anonymous,

well - in principle, "Operations" transform resources (or data inputs) into desired goods, services, or results, hence creating value to recipients (mostly: customers). Two or more connected operations constitute a process, and are generally divided into four basic categories:

(1) processing,

(2) inspection,

(3) transport

(4) storage

For each of these categories, efficiency is name of the game. This means that either the output is maximized (given certain resource inputs), or resource input needs are minimized for a desired output.

So for example for processing, operations problems can cover yield improvement problems, while for inspection, there might be the topic of automation (hence reducing input resource needs). And so on. You can draw a whole landscape of problems.

Cheers, Sidi

Victoria
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replied on May 23, 2017
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Hi,

In consulting, especially strategy consulting - there are a few basic frameworks that you use and then build on. For example when looking at process improvement you need to show you understand current company situation - so setting context and then what the challenge it is facing, finally finishing off with recommendation.

As simple and basic as this sounds, you need to practise analysis and show you understand the industry, competition and market which adds 'colour' to your answers and helps you stand out as a canidate.

Hope this helps, let me know if you have any other questions or want to practise.

what are these frameworks Victoria? — Jay on Aug 23, 2017

Originally answered:

Root cause analysis / driver trees

Paulo
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replied on Jul 27, 2017
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Hi Nadir,

Could you give me an example of a case where you saw that?
I think I know what you mean, but want to make sure I'm not misunderstanding you.

Best,
Paulo

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