Operations Management

  • Tim Mazzarol
  • Sophie Reboud
Part of the Springer Texts in Business and Economics book series (STBE)


Operations management is crucial to the success of any small business. It impacts both the firm’s financial and non-financial aspects. Of importance is the control that can be obtained over the firm’s cash flow, stock and other productive assets to achieve the maximum levels of operational efficiency and effectiveness. Each business is likely to be different in how it operates, and the key performance indicators (KPI) that it needs to monitor how it is performing. This chapter examines operations management and how it applies to small businesses. It includes a review of business process analysis, the development and use of meaningful KPIs, operations management systems and techniques.


  1. Alpander, G., Carter, K., & Forsgren, R. (1990). Managerial issues and problem-solving in the formative years. Journal of Small Business Management, 28(2), 9–18.Google Scholar
  2. Ashford, B. (2007). How benchmarking can mitigate risk in business transformation. BT Technology Journal, 25(1), 50–57.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Blakeman, J. (2002). Benchmarking: Definitions and overview. Centre for Urban Transportation Studies, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
  4. Bogan, C. E., & English, M. J. (1994). Benchmarking for best practices: Winning through innovative adaptation. Boston: CEP.Google Scholar
  5. Brown, A., Van der Wiele, T., & Loughton, K. (1998). Smaller enterprises’ experiences with ISO 9000. The International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, 15(3), 273–285.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Brown, L (1997). Competitive marketing strategy. Melbourne, Australia: Nelson.Google Scholar
  7. Chittenden, F., Poutziouris, P., & Mukhtar, S.-M. (1998). Small firms and the ISO 9000 approach to quality management. International Small Business Journal, 17(10), 73–88.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. DUBS. (1995). Operations management and control. Durham, UK: Small Business Centre, University of Durham Business School, Mill Hill Lane.Google Scholar
  9. Fassoula, E. D., & Rogerson, J. H. (2003). Management tools for SMEs. Total Quality Management, 14(10), 1114–1119.Google Scholar
  10. Fisteus, J. A., & Kloos, C. D. (2006). Business process analysis. In M. Khosrow-Pour (Ed.), Encyclopedia of e-commerce, e-government, and mobile commerce (pp. 78–82). Hershey, PA: IGI Global.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Gonzalez, M. J., Martin, E., Buiza, G., Hidalgo, M., & Beltran, J. (2015). Implementation of an operations management system in eight Spanish SMEs. In International conference on Industrial Engineering and Systems Management (IESM), October 2015 (pp. 1296–1302). Seville, Spain.Google Scholar
  12. Hannagan, T., & Bennett, R. (1995). Management: Concepts and practices. London: Pitman.Google Scholar
  13. Hongyi, S., & Tsz-Kit, C. (2002). Comparing reasons, practices and effects of ISO 9000 certification and TQM implementation in Norwegian SMEs and large firms. International Small Business Journal, 20(4), 421.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. ISO. (2015). Quality management principles. Geneva, Switzerland: International Standards Organization (ISO.Google Scholar
  15. Jacka, J. M., & Keller, P. J. (2009). Business process mapping: Improving customer satisfaction. 2nd edition. Hoboken, NJ,Wiley.Google Scholar
  16. Karagozoglu, N., & Lindell, M. (2004). Electronic commerce, strategy, operations and performance in small and medium-sized enterprises. Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, 11(3), 290–301.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Maire, J.-L., Bronet, V., & Pillet, M. (2008). Benchmarking: Methods and tools for SME. Benchmarking: An International Journal, 15(6), 765–781.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Mazzarol, T., & Olivares, C. (2007). Action learning task 5: Business operations. Small business excellence program. Perth, Australia: Centre for Entrepreneurial Management and Innovation (CEMI), University of Western Australia.Google Scholar
  19. McAdam, R., & Kelly, M. (2002). A business excellence approach to generic benchmarking in SMEs. Benchmarking, 9(1), 7–27.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. McAdam, R., & McKeown, M. (1999). Life after ISO 9000: An analysis of the impact of ISO 9000 and total quality management on small businesses in Northern Ireland. Total Quality Management, 10(2), 229–241.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Mkala, M. D., Wanjau, K. L., & Kyalo, T. N. (2018). Operations management and performance of manufacturing small and medium Enterprises in Kenya. International Journal of Research in Business and Social Science, 7(2), 2147–4478.Google Scholar
  22. Nwankwo, S. (2000). Quality assurance in small business organisations: Myths and realities. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, 17(1), 82–87.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Prasanna, M., & Vinodh, S. (2013). Lean six sigma in SMEs: An exploration through literature review. Journal of Engineering, Design and Technology, 11(3), 224–250.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Rahman, S. (2001). A comparative study of TQM practice and organisational performance of SMEs with and without ISO 9000 certification. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, 18(1), 35–45.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Raymond, L. (2005). Operations management and advanced manufacturing technologies in SMEs. Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, 16(8), 936–955.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Schlichter, J., Klyver, K., & Haug, A. (2018). The moderating effect of ERP system complexity on the growth–profitability relationship in young SMEs. Journal of Small Business Management in press.Google Scholar
  27. Sharma, D. S. (2005). The association between ISO 9000 certification and financial performance. International Journal of Accounting, 40(2), 151–172.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Silver, B. (2017). BPMN quick and easy, with method & style. Altadena, CA: Cody-Cassidy Press.Google Scholar
  29. Simpson, M., Padmore, J., & Newman, N. (2012). Towards a new model of success and performance in SMEs. International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research, 18(3), 264–285.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Snaith, W. (1997). Business management program course notes. Durham, UK: University of Durham Business School, Mill Hill Lane.Google Scholar
  31. Stickley, A., & Winterbottom, A. (1994). The nature of quality assurance and statistical methods in BS 5750. The Statistician, 43(3), 349–370.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. van der Wiele, T., & Brown, A. (1997). ISO 9000 series experiences in small and medium sized enterprises. Total Quality Management, 8(2/3), 300–304.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. van der Wiele, T., & Brown, A. (1998). Venturing down the TQM path for SME’s. International Small Business Journal, 16(2), 50–65.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Vazquez-Avila, G., Sanchez-Gutierrez, J., & Nuñez-Moreno, T. (2013). Knowledge management and operation management as drivers of competitiveness: Manufacturing SMEs in Guadalajara, Mexico. Competition Forum, 11(1), 50–55.Google Scholar
  35. Walters, D., & Lancaster, G. (2000). Implementing value strategy through the value chain. Management Decision, 38(3), 160–178.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Worster, A. J., Weirich, T. R., & Andera, F. J. C. (2012). Maximising return on investment using ERP applications. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tim Mazzarol
    • 1
  • Sophie Reboud
    • 2
  1. 1.University of Western AustraliaCrawleyAustralia
  2. 2.Burgundy School of BusinessDijonFrance

Personalised recommendations