Explain the role and responsibilities of an operations manager within an organisation.


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AD6 Exam Exemplar Questions Mar2013


Level 5

Advanced Diploma in Procurement

and Supply

AD6 –

Operations management

in supply chains





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AD6 Exam Exemplar Questions Mar2013



Learning outcome: 1.0


Explain the role and responsibilities of an operations manager within an organisation.

(10 marks)


Compare and contrast the activities within operations management across




(15 marks)

Marking scheme


Answers should include a definition of operations management and an explanation of the

operations management process, specifically highlighting the role and responsibilities of an

operations manager which might include areas such as:

Ensuring productive activity is carried out effectively and efficiently

Ensuring efficient use of resources to meet customer requirements

Providing cost-effective and timely operations

Measuring performance of productive activity

Design of effective systems and processes

Other appropriate areas should also be accepted.

Answers should recognise that operations managers have direct responsibility for all activities within

the input-transformation-output process and indirect responsibility for the links between operations

and other key functions. Up to 10 marks are available in total for part (a).

(10 marks)


Answers are required to consider THREE different sectors which might be selected from sectors

such as: manufacturing, services, not-for-profit, retail, construction or other relevant sectors.

Depending on the sectors selected, answers might include consideration of factors such as:

Sector specific input-transformation-output issues – e.g. the relative importance of

management of materials, products or people

Reliance on specialised materials/people to deliver the product or service

Private and public sector issues

Manufacturing and service sector issues

The role of logistics

How performance/efficiency is measured

Customer requirements

Health and safety issues

Other appropriate factors should also be accepted.

Answers should compare and contrast the role and activities of operations management within

the different sectors selected based on particular sector characteristics and required outcomes.



AD6 Exam Exemplar Questions Mar2013

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For example, measuring quality performance in the services or not-for profit sectors can be

much more challenging than in the manufacturing sector and health and safety considerations

in construction will differ greatly from those in retail. As a guide, up to 5 marks will be awarded

for each sector considered.

In addition to identifying differences and similarities, higher scoring answers will provide

analysis of why they might occur and the implications for organisations in those sectors.

(15 marks)

CIPS study guide reference: Chapter 1

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AD6 Exam Exemplar Questions Mar2013


Learning outcome: 2.0

Using a product of your choice, examine the content and purpose of the design process.

(25 marks)

Marking scheme

Pass grade answers are


to include the following content

A definition of product design might be included such as’ ‘The act of producing a drawing, plan or

pattern showing details of something to be produced or constructed’. Also an explanation of the

phases of a design process. Answers should recognise that effective product design can be achieved

using a 7 stage design process, the content of which is as follows:


Idea generation




Business analysis


Concept testing


Product development


Market testing


Product launch (Introduction).

Answers might also include the following content considerations; the benefits of building in

quality e.g. Taguchi methodology; the importance of having the right specification – performance

or conformance; the use of appropriate design tools such as standardisation, value analysis and

engineering; the use of cross-functional teams to ensure buy in from key internal stakeholders and

the incorporation of sustainability factors throughout the process.

The purpose of new product design is generally to gain or improve competitive advantage by

producing products that customers want while achieving a reasonable profit. Customers generally

want lower prices, higher quality and more customised features so the introduction of innovative and

exciting products can lead to greater market share and improved revenue. By using a design process

and considerations such as those above, organisations can increase the likelihood of successful new

product introduction.

Cross-functional teams can make a particularly important contribution to the product development

process as members will provide input and perspectives from key internal stakeholder areas of the

organisation such as design, marketing, sales and procurement through to operations, logistics and


Answers should examine areas such as those above including reference to both the content and

purpose of the design process in the context of the product selected.

Stronger answers will provide a comprehensive examination of the product design process through

all stages and demonstrate an in-depth awareness of the important considerations for achieving

competitive advantage.

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