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BUU33650 Digital Technology in Operations

(5 ECTS - 2nd semester only)


Paul Lyons

Module Content/Outline:

This module continues on from the preceding two modules in Operations Management (BU2560 and BU3640) to deepen students' understanding of essential concepts in Operations Management and current and emerging capabilities in Information and Comunications Technologies (ICT) that are relevant to the delivery of services.  It is aimed at students with a good understanding of Operations Management, and assumes some knowledge of personal computing and the rudiments of current telecommunications (e.g. mobile phones, internet).  Throughout the module students will be exposed to practical issues and opportunities that arise through deployment of ICT, process improvement and use of analytics to create business and public value.

The module is aimed at understanding and application of digital technologies such as cloud computing, 'big' data and analytics to create firm and customer value, focusing in on process improvement, capacity management, sourcing / procurement, quality management, risk management and logistics.  Students will have the opportunity to work both independently and in groups of 3-4 to identify opportunities for value creation through the application of data, information technology and/or analytics.  Current issues and opportunities relating to services will be identified and students must come up with appropriate solutions drawing on the concepts, tools and techniques in both information systems and operations management.  Along the way, new techniques and/or variations on those already learned will be introduced to help students deepen their understanding of the applicability of particular solutions under different circumstances.  The final exam will assess student’s ability to apply the concepts learned to business cases.

Learning Outcomes:

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

  • Describe the main components of information systems and discuss the pros and cons of different configurations for business / operations strategy;

  • Discuss how operations and/or information management can increase customer value and contribute to the competitive advantage of the firm;

  • Identify a broad range of data sources available to businesses in the public domain and classify these as strategic / operational / marketing / financial;

  • Assess data available on the web or inside an organisation for its potential to create value.

Lectures &Tutorials/Contact hours:

  • 2 hours of lectures per week
  • 5 discussions / tutorials per term (which may be done online)

Essential Texts/Key Reading:

Boddy, D., Boonstra, A. and Kennedy, G. (2008) Managing Information Systems: Strategy & Organisation, Essex, England: Pearson Education

Supplemental Texts

[Textbook] Fitzsimmons, James A., Fitzsimmons, Mona J. and Bordoloi, Sanjeev (2014), Service Management:  Operations, Strategy and Information Technology (8th ed – Int’l Edition), London:  McGraw-Hill.

Davenport T and Harris, J. (2007) Competing on Analytics: The New Science of Winning, Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Publishing.


Assessments are determined at the beginning of term.  In previous years, the module has been assessed through various combinations of tutorials, essay and/or a group project.

Dates for submission:

To be advised

Penalties for late submission

Tutorials and must be submitted by the due date or no mark (0) will be awarded. 

Essays submitted after the designated submission deadline will be penalised by 10% of the grade awarded for each working day late, or part thereof.  In the event of a non-medical reason for non-submission of a term-assignment a student should consult with and receive prior approval from the lecture concerned. Students unable to submit a term assignment for medical reasons must produce a medical certificate to the School of Business Studies office within three working days of the missed submission date. Certificates received after that time will not be accepted.


1.5 hrs (50%)