Operations

Featured Operations Articles

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Amazon Raised Its Minimum Wage — Will Its Rivals Do the Same?

The MIT SMR Strategy Forum examines whether Amazon’s new $15 per hour minimum wage for workers will force rivals to follow suit.

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Demystifying Data Monetization

Data on its own has value, but insights from that data substantially increase its value.

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Get Things Done With Smaller Teams

Frontiers |

By creating smaller, more agile teams, managers can facilitate collaboration and efficiency.

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Optimizing Communication

When Communication Should Be Formal

June 29, 2018 | Antti Tenhiälä and Fabrizio Salvador

Formal communication channels, such as protocol-guided meetings, are often eschewed by today’s managers and employees, who prefer the ease of email and apps. But informal avenues can lead to oversights and inefficiencies that hurt performance. That’s the central finding of research from IE Business School on manufacturers of high-tech machinery. Fortunately, formal communication protocols can be designed to both maximize performance and overcome people’s resistance to adopting them.

Service Operations

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Project Management

Breaking Logjams in Knowledge Work

Despite the well-documented costs of overload, many leaders still think organizations thrive under pressure. They have a lot to learn from manufacturing, where managers have adopted a “pull” system to manage task flow, improving productivity and performance. This concept can be used to prevent overload in knowledge work, too. And “visual management” techniques make it easier to apply pull thinking to a portfolio of projects by rendering nonphysical tasks tangible. Two recent changes at the Broad Institute, an MIT-affiliated biomedical and genomic research center, illustrate how.

Five Rules for Managing Large, Complex Projects

Large-scale, long-term projects are notoriously difficult to manage. But recent research on megaprojects — defined as projects costing more than $1 billion — reveals five lessons that can help executives manage any big, complex project more effectively.

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Supply Chain Management

Why Supply Chains Must Pivot

Frontiers |

In an uncertain world, supply chains must adopt flexibility and automation to gain sustainable advantage.

Can Your Supply Chain Hear Me Now?

Frontiers |

Conversational commerce has the potential to transform the business supply chain.

Beyond the Speed-Price Trade-Off

Frontiers |

Advances in inventory and sales analytics make it possible to deliver products both cheaply and quickly.

Unleashing the Potential of Supply Chain Analytics

Frontiers |

To fully benefit from supply chain analytics, companies need to be able to act on insights quickly.

Video Series: Following the Digital Thread

Our eight-part video series explores how integrated digital technologies can transform business.

PROLOGUE: The Path Toward the Digital Enterprise

EPISODE 1: Revolutionizing Supply Chains

EPISODE 2: Creating a Smart Part and Managing Its Life Cycle

EPISODE 3: Augmenting Part Design With Topology Optimization

EPISODE 4: A Digital Safety Net

EPISODE 5: Fabricating Within the Digital Thread

EPISODE 6: Testing and Validation

EPISODE 7: How the Digital Thread Weaves Its Way Through the Business

EPISODE 8: The Digital Thread Takes Flight

EPILOGUE: Beyond Manufacturing