Explore BrainMass

Explore BrainMass

    Operations Research

    Operations research, or management science, is the application of advanced analytical methods in mathematics to complex business decision-making problems. By using mathematical methods, analysts can model business decisions and solve optimization problems (such as profit maximization or cost minimization problems) using linear and nonlinear programming and statistical analysis. These problems are simplified with the use of computer programs such as Excel Solver.

    Linear Programming (LP)

    Linear programming is concerned with the optimization (minimization or maximization) of a linear function while satisfying a set of linear equalities and/or inequalities (collectively known as constraints). Linear programming in operations research can be applied to a variety of problems.

    Resource allocation: The most typical problems in business are resource allocation problems. For example, a common type of resource allocation problem is the problem of product mix, which looks at the optimal mix of products that will maximize profit subject to resource constraints such as limited machine time or a limited quantity of a necessary input. A solution to this problem will also provide other valuable information that may allow the student to identify bottlenecks, find the range over which the unit profit can change without affecting the product mix, identify the marginal benefit of adding additional units of the limited resource, and find the range of quantity over which the availability of the resource can change without affecting the identity of the bottleneck in the system.

    Blending: Blending problems are problems that involve finding the optimal blend or mix of ingredients in order to minimize costs and satisfy some additional requirement. For example, crude oil blending allows refineries to mix different crude oil products to achieve some optimal and consistent product. Similarly, ingredients in animal feed stock may be combined in different amounts to achieve some optimal blend that meets minimum nutritional requirements.

    Queuing: Queuing models look at resource decisions such as determining optimal inventory levels to minimize costs in the face of fixed ordering costs (such as delivery costs), carrying costs for units on hand, seasonal price fluctuations, and fluctuations in demand (and costs associated with stock outs).

    Scheduling: Scheduling problems include problems such as personnel staffing, project tasks, and determining the optimal coverage of sporting events.

    Network flow and network optimization: Network flow problems are a special case in linear programming that look at things like transportation or routing problems, critical path analysis (project management), the assignment problem, and other flow problems.

    Facility location: Facility location problems look to minimize things like transportation costs, or address other criteria such as taking advantage of price-differentials in the case of low-cost labour in other jurisdictions.  Facility location problems also include problems such as floor planning.

    Investment decisions: Linear programming can also be used to solve investment problems such as designing the optimal portfolio to minimize, or hedge, risk.

    Nonlinear Programming

    Nonlinear programming problems are similar to linear programming problems in that they involve the optimization of an objective function while satisfying a set of equalities and/or inequalities. However, unlike linear programs, nonlinear programs exist where the objective function or some of the constraints are nonlinear. For example, linear problems may become nonlinear problems if one of the cost functions exhibits economies of scale.

    Integer Programming

    Integer programming refers to linear or nonlinear optimization problems where some of the variables are required to take on discrete values. They can be modeled with binomial variables that take on values of either zero or one. Many business decision problems require integer programming because their variable units must be whole numbers. For example, it would not make sense for a optimal solution to require a company to build half a factory in one location, to produce only one-third of a widget, to keep 20 and 1/8 units of inventory on hand, to hire less than one person, or to route half a bus one way and the other half another. Thus program designers are faced with a finite set of alternatives and face discrete decision problems.

    Dynamic Programming

    Dynamic programming involves problems that require a sequence of decisions over time, where one decision must follow logically from the preceding outcome. Many investment decisions are modeled using dynamic programming, because sell, hold, or buy decisions can be programmed in the model based on fluctuations in the prices of securities.

    Monte Carlo Simulation

    Monte Carlo methods involve repeated random sampling in order to obtain variables or outcomes. Therefore, by running the simulation again and again, a computer program can provide results in the form of statistical probabilities. The name derives from the fact that the simulation can be likened to gambling at a casino, recording your winnings, and determining from this information the probability of winning your next hand. 

     

    Photo by M. B. M. on Unsplash

    © BrainMass Inc. brainmass.com August 16, 2022, 3:07 pm ad1c9bdddf

    BrainMass Solutions Available for Instant Download

    Research Methods: The methodology of a research paper

    What are the basic differences of various research methods and what instruments may be utilized in a given research topic not only on operations but also on other functional areas of business? The Solution is given using PowerPoint.

    Strategies in the Multinational Organization

    Company: United Holdings Inc (hardquartered in Chicago Illinois) 1.Summarize the details of the company with the company name and where it is located in the United States and abroad. What service or products does the company offer? 2. Conduct a SWOT analysis of the company you have chosen. Include at least three elements for

    Sun Coast: Literature Review

    Please help with an article discussion, including the qualifications of the authors, purpose of the studies, research methodologies and designs used, results from the studies, and explanations of how the articles relate to Sun Coast's problem. Ensure that you also describe how you believe the research made a positive organizatio

    T-test or f-test (ANOVA), Chi-Square, Mann-Whitney U test & more

    There are numerous times when the information collected from a real organization will not conform to the requirements of a parametric analysis. That is, a practitioner would not be able to analyze the data with a t-test or f-test (ANOVA). Presume that a young professional had read about tests—such as the Chi-Square, the Mann-W

    Price-Per-Pound Report for Investors

    Email From Fred and Carrie Date: December 1 Subject: Price-Per-Pound Report for Investors Hi, Thanks for helping us examine the price-per-pound model. The Report you create will help us learn more about the potential profit and allow us to make decisions that will be best for our business. 1. We need you to start by res

    Petroco Service Station: Exponentially smoothed forecast & MAPD

    The manager of the Petroco Service Station wants to forecast the demand for unleaded gasoline next month so that the proper number of gallons can be ordered from the distributor. The owner has accumulated the following data on demand for unleaded gasoline from sales during the past 10 months: Month Gasoline Demanded (gal.) O

    Qualitative Research Design Questions

    I need help answering the following qualitative questions: 1. Discuss at least three different data collection methods used in qualitative research. When would they be appropriate? What are the limitations inherent in those methods? 2. I also need help discussing the common characteristics and phases of qualitative research?

    Research Questions V/s Interview Questions

    Discuss the difference between the research questions that address a problem being explored and the questions that might be used in an interview. How are they similar? How are they different?

    An elaborate transshipment problem formulation

    KanTech Corporation is a global distributor of electrical parts and components. Its customers are electronics companies in the United States, including computer manufacturers and audio/visual product manufacturers. The company contracts to purchase components and parts from manufacturers in Russia, Eastern and eastern Europe, an

    Three Types of Linear Programming Application Problems

    1. Great Northwoods Outfitters is a retail phone-catalog company that specializes in outdoor clothing and equipment. A phone station at the company will be staffed with either full-time operators or temporary operators 8 hours per day. Full-time operators, because of their experience and training, process more orders and make fe

    Leadership Training Programs

    1. What are the advantages and disadvantages of IHG's Virtual Leadership Development Program for (a) the company and (b) the employees? 2. Many companies are using a blend of technological and traditional methods. What other traditional methods, if added to current one, would make the training program more effective? 3. Do

    Numericals for Inventory Model

    1. Walmart Inventory As a manager at Wal-Mart, you have just realized that the store frequently runs out of Nutella spread jars. You are suspecting that there might be a problem with the replenishment policy. Thus, you have decided to gather more data. The demand for Nutella turns out to be normally distributed. The mean

    Two key competencies for global corporate leadership

    Review the RAND report, New Challenges for International Leadership: Lessons From Organizations With Global Missions, from this week's resources. Consider the competencies needed for leaders of international organizations. Provide a one page explanation of two key competencies required for global leadership. Then, explain how

    GAO and audits

    1. Why is an audit considered to be the final phase of a budgetary process? 2. Explain the mission of the U.S. Government Accountability Office. 3. Are program evaluations more likely to be undertaken for political or for managerial reasons, or both? Why?

    "Rule of Man" versus Rule of Law

    What are the pros and cons to living in a society where the rule of man dominates the legal system? Would the rule of man be a better system than the rule of law in your opinion?

    Hofstede's Cultural Dimensions in International Business

    Use Hofstede's characteristics to differentiate international and domestic business operations. Identify the key characteristics that drive business decisions on an international and domestic level. Part 1: Pick three individual countries, one in the Middle East, one in Asia, and one in Europe. Apply Hofstede's characteristic

    Theory & Ethics in Research

    Discuss the importance of theory in quantitative research. By comparison, how different is the use of theory in qualitative research? Under what circumstances would you attempt to persuade a potential study participant to consent to an interview? Completing a survey, how ethical or unethical do you think this would be and why

    NCR Corporation Relocation Example

    NCR Corporation, known as world leader in ATMS, point-of-sale (POS) retail checkout scanners, and check-in kiosks at airports, announced in June 2009 that it would move its world headquarters from Dayton (OH) to Duluth(GA), a suburb of Atlanta, after more than 125 years. An employer of 1,200 mostly high-salaried, professional wo

    Procter & Gamble (P&G)

    Procter & Gamble (P&G) recently moved its IAMS pet food division from Vandalia (OH) to Mason (OH). The move affected 240 workers, who were offered positions to join the 2,000 workers already occupying the pet food division headquarters in Mason. A company statement indicated, "We're doing this to increase productivity, collabora

    Red Bull: Marketing Strategy

    1. What are Red Bull's greatest strengths as more companies (like Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and Monster) enter the energy drink category and gain market share? What are the risks to their brand equity of competing against such powerhouses? 2. Discuss the pros and cons of Red Bull's nontraditional marketing tactics. Should the company

    Online Travel Agency Marketing Mix Example

    You have compiled a marketing plan for your fictional start-up company (Travel Supreme). Share the most important part of the marketing plan, and include an explanation of your company and product/service, situation analysis, and the application to the four Ps (marketing mix).

    Ritz Carlton: Marketing Strategy

    1. Using segmentation strategies, what are the target market(s) for the Ritz-Carlton? How does this relate to their brand management strategies? 2. Who are the top three competitors of Ritz-Carlton, and what are their advantages/disadvantages with respect to their competitive product/service strategies. 3. How does The Rit

    Culture, Diversity, and Multiculturalism

    The very nature of global business requires leaders to develop cultural intelligence and understand the importance of multiculturalism and diversity in a global business environment. Define the concepts of cultural intelligence, multiculturalism, and diversity, and analyze how they contribute to effective global leadership.

    Leadership and Globalisation

    Effective global leaders must be able to recognize current and future trends in their industry and determine the best ways to address those trends. Select three of the following trends in global business, and then choose the leadership theory or model you believe would allow you, as a global leader, to effectively address each t

    IT Infrastructure and Technology

    1. New information technologies can have a powerful impact on a business and IT strategies. Please provide one example of a new infrastructure-based technology and describe its impact on IT strategy. 2. Distinguish between Web 2.0 and Web 3.0 technologies for organizations. 3. Explain the concept of on-demand computing. P

    Information Systems In Global Business Today

    1. Explain the relationship between an organization's ability to effectively use information technology and its ability to meet its corporate strategic goals. 2. Consider the role of the IT professional versus the IT manager. Which one needs to have a better understanding of business-user needs and how they translate into te

    Starbucks Case Study Background: Coffee and Farmer Equity

    Select an actual event from your prior professional experience in which you or the organization(s) with which you work developed, enacted, implemented, and/or impacted public policy. If you do not have an example of a professional experience or organization, select one from the literature (i.e., reputable newspapers, periodicals

    Operations Management and Competitive Advantage

    Begin your proposal with an explanation of how the approach to operations strategy will differ between the service side of Going Inc and the manufacturing end, and what operations challenges are likely to be faced with each. Include specific examples.

    Closing a business letter for customers

    I would like to write a letter on closing of business for a landscape company and to thank the customers for their business as well as give them another company to look at.

    ADVERTISEMENT