This assignment will help you to develop and demonstrate your understanding of service operations management concepts and techniques by applying them to a real-life context (i.e. the service you have investigated with your group).
Your task is to write a report explaining how service operations can be improved. You will focus on one aspect of the service operation you analysed in your presentation and create a plan for improving the service. Your plan should draw on what you have learned throughout the module, as well as your own independent study and further reading. It should also demonstrate awareness of best practice through benchmarking of the chosen service against other services you may wish to investigate. Your report should analyse service operations from the perspectives of managers, employees and customers.
Report Structure: the report should be based on the presentation attached
Please use only the following headings:
1. Need for improvement
You are not required to describe the task or offer a general definition of the subject, please focus directly on the task.
Briefly introduce and explain the service under investigation and which area of operations you believe needs to be improved. Assume the reader is familiar with service operations, but not with the specific service.
Provide a clear justification for the improvement opportunity and explain what the benefits of improving it will be (e.g. for employees, customers, the business etc)
Please make use of the work developed during the module, including images or figures used in your group presentation.
Although the written content must be your own, note that using the same photographs, process maps etc as your fellow group members is permitted and encouraged.
Focus only on the improvement opportunity you have identified, not on the rest of the service. You may wish to relate your analysis to one specific topic.
Explain how things are done in other service management contexts. You should analyse the service by comparison with a) knowledge and b) practice.
o a) Refer to at least one and no more than three academic articles. Make use of resource lists on blackboard to identify further reading, for those aiming for higher marks.
o b) Benchmark your service against examples of best practice that you identify, for example from services explained in the module content, from those presented by colleagues or from your own independent study. Sources of evidence may include industry reports, market analysis, news reports and company websites.
Outline how the service could be improved by providing a maximum of three recommendations for service operations managers that logically follow from your analysis. Content in weeks 9, 10 and 11 may help you to generate recommendations.
Explain and justify the benefits of your proposal. This should include an explanation of the challenges that would be expected (e.g. why employees might resist, why customers may need convincing, what costs might be involved) and how you propose to overcome them.
You should demonstrate awareness of the implications in relation to social responsibility, sustainability, accountability and ethical practice, where these are relevant to the service and affect your recommendations.
Module Learning Outcomes Assessed:
1. Apply core concepts of service management to given scenarios, decide upon actions and evaluate their effectiveness.
2. Apply original thinking in problem solving, demonstrating ability to select and evaluate evidence, use of appropriate methods of analysis and appreciation of multiple perspectives.
3. Recognise social responsibility, sustainability, accountability and ethical practice in service operations.
4. Communicate plans and proposals in a variety of media.
Submit your coursework as a single document through Blackboard.
The maximum word limit is 2000 words, fully inclusive. Please be aware that penalties may be applied if the maximum word limit is exceeded. There is no minimum word limit.
In addition to the core textbooks, you may refer to a maximum of three academic articles that you have read. Note that marks may be deducted for excessive or irrelevant references.
You may refer to as many websites and reports as are appropriate. You should ensure these are reliable sources and support what you are saying. For example, you may wish to refer the reader to a service providers website or to independent reviews of a service you are investigating.
You must not use Harvard referencing. Instead provide references as numbered footnotes, and ensure that you provide an explanation of what relevant information or evidence the source provides to support what you are saying. For example, explain what an article is about, or what the reader should expect to see from a page that you direct them to.
For examples of this referencing style, please see recent articles in California Management Review.
Ensure you provide sufficient information for a reader to find the source you are referring to, for example web-links, or journal name, year, volume and page number
 This is an example of a footnote. Use footnotes to explain the
relevance of any source that you are referencing.
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will help you to develop and demonstrate your understanding of service
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