A Career in Operations Management

A Career in Operations Management

A Career in Operations Management
Mandira Pangeni

Recent events have highlighted ongoing logistics and supply chain management challenges, including delayed cargo shipments, critical components shortages, and increased goods prices. This has brought attention to the crucial role of effective operations management in ensuring a consistent and reliable supply chain. 

The disruptions caused by these problems demonstrate the need for skilled professionals who can guide industries through these challenges and work to restore consistency and predictability in logistics. This includes identifying and addressing potential disruptions, developing contingency plans, and implementing strategies to improve efficiency and reduce costs. 

It also means having a better understanding of the market, the ability to adapt to changes in demand, and the ability to leverage technology to optimise logistics and supply chain operations.

What is Operation Management?

Operations management is the management field responsible for overseeing the entire process of producing a product or providing a service, from the initial stage of acquiring raw materials or inputs, through the various stages of production and manufacturing, to the final stage of delivery or distribution. This includes activities such as planning, organising, directing, and supervising the various processes involved in production. The ultimate goal of operations management is to ensure that the production process runs smoothly, efficiently, and cost-effectively while meeting the required quality standards.

For example, in an e-commerce setting like Amazon or Flipkart, the operations management team would be responsible for tracking and managing the entire process from the customer placing an order, selecting a payment method, managing inventory levels, to final shipping, delivery and customer feedback. This includes ensuring that orders are processed and shipped on time, that inventory levels are maintained to meet demand, and that customer service and support are responsive and efficient. 

Additionally, the operations management team would identify and address any bottlenecks or inefficiencies and implement strategies to improve overall performance and reduce costs.

Eligibility Criteria to pursue Operation Management

  • A bachelor's degree in business is typically the minimum requirement for a career in operations management, but some may pursue a specialised degree or concentration. 
  • To advance to higher-level positions, an MBA may be required. 
  • In terms of skills, operations managers should have strong organisational abilities, knowledge of operations management software, excellent time management and communication skills, the ability to effectively interact with various stakeholders, multitasking capabilities, problem-solving skills, and the ability to analyse financial data.

Courses in Operation Management

  • Principles of Management
  • Supply Chain Management
  • Project Management
  • Quality Control & Improvement
  • Logistics and Distribution
  • Decision-Making and Analytics
  • Service Operations Management

Job prospects and Salary

A career in operations management is a challenging and rewarding field that involves overseeing and managing the processes and systems that make a company run smoothly. These processes include everything from supply chain management and production planning to logistics and distribution. Operations managers are responsible for ensuring that these processes are efficient, cost-effective, and meet the needs of customers and other stakeholders. They also play a crucial role in developing and implementing strategies to improve performance, increase productivity, and reduce costs.

To succeed in an operations management career, individuals should have strong analytical and problem-solving skills and excellent communication and leadership abilities. They should also be well-versed in the latest technology and software used in the field, including inventory management, project management, and supply chain management systems. Additionally, they should possess knowledge of industry-specific regulations and standards.

Operations managers can work in various industries, including manufacturing, retail, healthcare, and logistics. They can hold positions such as production manager, logistics manager, supply chain manager, and operations director. Many operations managers have a bachelor's degree in business or a related field, and some choose to pursue an MBA to advance their careers. With the proper education, skills, and experience, an operations manager can expect to earn a competitive salary and enjoy a fulfilling and challenging career.

Job Profile

Operations Manager

An operations manager is a senior-level position responsible for overseeing and coordinating the various aspects of a company's production process. This may include managing the day-to-day operations, ensuring production runs efficiently and effectively, and meeting quality standards. 

Additionally, an operations manager may be responsible for budgeting and financial forecasting and implementing new processes and procedures to improve overall performance. Junior roles in operations management, such as operations management executives, may also be available and focus on specific aspects of the production process or assist the senior operations manager in their responsibilities.

Material Manager

A materials manager is a professional responsible for managing the acquisition, storage, and distribution of the materials and products a company needs to operate. They are responsible for developing and implementing strategies to acquire the necessary materials and resources, often intending to identify cost savings opportunities. This may include negotiating contracts with vendors, coordinating logistics, and overseeing the movement and storage of materials. They also play a crucial role in forecasting future material needs and ensuring optimal inventory levels. 

Additionally, materials managers often play a vital role in overseeing end-of-year inventories and reporting on the materials and inventory status of the company. They also work closely with other departments, such as production and logistics, to ensure materials are delivered on time and at the right place.

Operation Research Analysts

An operations research analyst helps companies improve efficiency and reduce wasted resources by identifying and solving problems related to their operations. They do this by using various analytical techniques, such as statistical analysis, data mining, and mathematical modelling, to gain insight into the root causes of operational challenges. They use this information to develop and implement plans of action that address the issues they have identified. These action plans may include changes to processes, policies, or technologies and recommendations for new ways of doing things. 

Operations research analysts often work with a wide range of data, from financial and production data to logistics and supply chain management data. They may also work with other departments to implement solutions and continuously monitor and evaluate the results of their actions to ensure ongoing improvement.

Quality Control Specialists

A quality control specialist is a professional responsible for ensuring that a company's products or services meet the required quality standards and meet customer expectations. They achieve this by monitoring quality throughout the production process, conducting inspections and tests to identify potential issues, and taking action to correct any problems. They are responsible for implementing and monitoring quality control procedures and standards and can work in different industries such as manufacturing, healthcare, and service industries.

Inventory Control Manager

An inventory control manager is a professional overseeing and managing a company's quality and supply of raw materials and inventory. They are responsible for ensuring the company has the materials and inventory to operate effectively and efficiently without overstocking or running out of critical items. This may include conducting regular reviews of inventory levels, forecasting future needs, and identifying and solving any inventory problems that arise.

While supply chain and logistics managers also play a role in overseeing the procurement and raw materials process, an inventory control manager is specifically focused on the inventory aspect of this process. They ensure that all inventory is properly accounted for, tracked, and stored and that inventory levels are maintained at optimal levels.


An operation management graduate who has just started their career can expect to earn an average of INR 3.62 lakh per year, including bonuses. In comparison, those with one to four years of experience can earn an average of INR 4.37 lakh per year. 

As operation managers gain more experience, their salaries tend to increase. Those with five to nine years of experience can earn INR 6.95 lakh per year, and those with 10 to 19 years of experience can expect to earn INR 9.97 lakh per year on average.

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