MBA in Operations Management: Degree Overview

Oct 20, 2019

Students who want to study operations management at the graduate level may consider a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a focus in the subject. Find out more about these programs and future opportunities for graduates.

Essential Information

An MBA degree program with a concentration in operations management is designed to provide the training and knowledge required for careers in supply chain management, production operations, and service procedures. Students in these programs learn to apply analytical, communications, research, and leadership skills to business logistics. They also study topics in finance, statistics, and marketing. It is also common for the curriculum to include hands-on projects or field experiences in addition to traditional classroom studies.

These programs typically take two years of full-time study to complete, but many schools offer part-time schedules and online coursework. In order to apply, students must hold a bachelor's degree, preferably with undergraduate coursework in accounting, statistics, algebra, and English. They must demonstrate proficiency in mathematics and language.

Master of Business Administration in Operations Management

In addition to the general business courses that comprise an MBA program's core curriculum, students in these programs take elective courses in their chosen specialization of operations management. Some of the particular skills that students may gain include the ability to coordinate service and product delivery processes, evaluate a company's asset capacity and create corporate investment strategies. Courses may include:

  • Operations strategy
  • Supply chain management
  • Service operations management
  • Process management
  • Resource planning

Popular Career Options

Graduates might go on to hold a variety of professional business positions. These could include:

  • Operations manager
  • Operations analyst
  • Supply chain manager
  • Management consultant

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

Employment for general and operations managers is expected to increase at a rate of 7% over the 2018-2028 decade, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, These professionals earned an average annual salary of $123,880 as of May 2018. Management analyst job growth is expected to be 14% during the 2018-2028 decade, and the average annual salary for these professionals was $94,390 in May 2018.

Continuing Education

Graduates who seek to distinguish themselves professionally or broaden their knowledge and skill base might consider participating in advanced training programs, such as professional certificate programs, that are designed to update students on changing technology and practices in the field. There are also Ph.D. options in operations management that can be integrated with a related subject like supply chain management. Doctoral programs prepare students for academic or research-based careers in operations management.

Overall, by earning an MBA with a focus in operations management, students gain a broad business education as well as advanced expertise in logistics. Upon graduation, they are ready for executive positions in the field or higher level studies.

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