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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. 

Lean Manufacturing / Six Sigma

This solution is a broad college study guide covering various aspects of the Six Sigma methodology and processes in Operations Research. 1. Draw a SIPOC diagram for a small, independent bike repair shop that specializes in variety of services. Do not write any narrative. Manufacturers Labor

Procurement & Supply Chain IT integration

Integration of Technology Technology has changed the way we conduct business on a daily basis. A number of organizations have opted for integrating systems and sharing information with their counterparts. Using the Internet, research information technology (IT) systems for supply chains. Then respond to the following: As

Literature Review Explanations

Conduct a literature review which you critically analyze and synthesize six articles (three quantitative and three qualitative) connected to a definite business problem. For each article, complete the following: • Critical Analysis o Identify the problem. o Describe the major finding(s). o Describe the strengths and we

Foreign Exchange Rate Risk

The Mexican ceramics folk-art firm signs a contract for the Mexican firm to deliver 1500 pieces of artwork to an Italian firm within the next 120 days. The contract is denominated in pesos. During this time the Mexican peso strengthens against the euro. What is the net profitability effect on the Mexican firm? What international

Competitiveness and Inventory Management or Safety Stock

Competitiveness and Inventory Management To be competitive, many fast-food chains expanded their menus to include a wider range of foods. Although contributing to competitiveness, this has added to the complexity of operations, including inventory management. In what ways did the expansion of menu offerings create a problem f

Doctoral Study for a Target Population

Analyze ethical considerations that require attention for a target population when conducting the process of doctoral research. The analysis must encompass, a brief description of a target population within the Doctoral Study, as well as any applicable aspects that could be examined by the Institutional Review Board. A brief des

AES Global Sourcing Initiative

1. Consider the AES Global Sourcing Initiative from an overall perspective. How effective has the effort been to-date? Is AES applying a truly strategic approach? 2. How should the electric-meters team proceed? a. What should be the key elements of their strategy? b. Which suppliers hold the greatest promise for AES? c. Shou

Research Thinking

Analyze the relationship amid one's own research thinking and quantitative and qualitative methodologies. The analysis must contain these elements: Identify the important concepts, propositions, precepts, etc., of your own research philosophy, that includes any rationale for your choice. Analyze the relationship between your res

South Korea: Managerial Behavior

Your company plans to establish MNE manufacturing operations in South Korea. You have been asked to conduct a cultural audit focusing on leadership behaviors of South Korea. The results of your report will be used for internal training for plant managers due to be reassigned to work with South Korean managers in a few months. Yo

Qualitative research designs

evaluate qualitative research questions in assigned journal articles in your discipline and consider the alignment of theory, problem, purpose, research questions, and design. You will also identify the type of qualitative research design the authors used and explain how it was implemented. Provide a 1-2 page critique of the

Four Functions of Management

Most managers in organizations develop strategic plans without realizing the importance of internal and external assessments and their implications on the four functions of management. Assume you are hired as a new manager and you want to improve your company by helping upper management develop a better understanding of these is

International Aspect of Business

Select an article published in January 2012 or later that deals with the international aspects of doing business. Must have all of the following parts: - Summary: It must provide the reader a very good idea of what the article is about, even without having read the article. -Thoughts About the Article -References

Annotation of a Quantitative Research Article

Submit the annotation of a quantitative research article on a topic of your interest. •Annotate one quantitative research article from a peer-reviewed journal on a topic of your interest. •Provide the reference list entry for this article in APA Style followed by a three-paragraph annotation that includes: •A summar

Coffee: The Legal King of Colombian Exports

This is not a request for a written paper just points on which to expound on the following: **Identify and discuss social, cultural, and political implications of the development of the coffee export economy

Global Technical Systems versus Department of Navy

File: B-411230.2 Date: September 9, 2015 Instructions: Please analyze the attached Global Technical Systems case and submit a brief using the format below. Briefing can be extensive or short depending on the depth of analysis. A comprehensive brief includes the following: 1. Title and Citation. The title of the case shows

Chocolate and the exploitation of children.

This is not a request for a written paper, just answers to expound on. Should labor practices in another country be a relevant consideration in international trade? Why or why not? 2. With regard to trade in products such as cocoa, what options are available to governments, businesses, and consumers for dealing with pr

Performance Work Statement

Market Research Report For (Program/Command Name) Author: (Name) Report Date: (mm/dd/yyyy) Organization: (Org symbol) Report Title: (Service name) PSC and NAICS Code: (Codes and descriptions) Portfolio: (Knowledge Based Services, Facility Related Services, Equipment Related Services, Electronics & Communicat

Market Research Report for Performance Work Statements

Market Research Report 56 Custom Credits. Read the IDEX Performance Work Statement (PWS). Conduct market research to determine an estimated price for the services identified in the PWS. You may use GSA's Federal Supply Schedules on GSA Advantage for pricing data. GSA is just an example of a source you may use to find prici

Steps to forecasting and how they apply to business methods.

1) Describe in your words the eight steps to forecasting and how they apply to business methods. 2) The decomposition approach to forecasting (using trend and seasonal components) may be helpful when attempting to forecast a time-series. Could an analogous approach be used in a multiple regression analysis? Explain briefly.

Trader Joe: organizational culture, employee motvation

Trader Joe's Read and reflect on the case study about Trader Joe's attached. Consider Joe Coulombe's approach to organizational design, and analyze the effects and applications of the various organizational structures and levels of authority. Given the benefits and motivations mentioned in the case study, share an analysis of T

Research in Business

Locate a peer-reviewed article that discusses research in an organization. Topic ideas might include the role of research, development of research studies, integration of different types of methods, or the communication of research results within an organization. You are also required to locate a second peer-reviewed to

Identify consequences and value benefits using scaled measurement

The use of a utility scale direct approach helps to measure the value of a decision numerically in order of risk probability. The researcher will choose from five considerable job opportunities and identify the objectives used in making the decision. These job opportunities are within institutions of higher education and includ

Sampling Design Proposal

Write a two- to three-page report discussing the sampling design for the proposal. Describe the sampling procedures (convenience, quota, simple random) that will yield the best results for your research objective and justify your rationale for choosing the procedure(s). Include the following information: 1. Research the object

Stakeholder Interests & Management

Stakeholder interests in an organization can be quite varied, and there may be many times when these interests do not coincide. What is the best way for a for-profit organization to manage these conflicting needs? Why?

Short Selling Stocks

How to Short Sell Stocks Abstract The Shanghi Composite Index is at 2722.55 on January 27, 2016, down 17.64% for the past year. The Federal Reserve might raise The Federal Funds Interest rate in March 2016. Crude Oil WTI (NYMEX) closed at $32.80 per barrel on January 27, 2016 down from $37.34 on

Small Business Incremental Stages

As a small business goes international through incremental stages instead of as a global start-up, what unique benefits does it have? Can you identify any obstacles?

Business Plan for Hungry Lion

Need it reviewing and help with: Personal methods of compensation • How you will maintain accounting records and procedures OPERATIONS • Daily management • Hiring and personnel policies • Insurance coverage and leasing agreements • Delivery of products and services

Strategic Evaluation

I need help evaluating Coca-Cola Company's published mission, vision, values, and objectives/goals. Please cite any references. 1. What are the company's vision, mission, values, and goals? 2. According to their official website, what is the company's Mission statement and what does it mean? I need an in-depth analysis of this