Capstone Course

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ENGR 6240 Operational Excellence for Engineers

This course offers students the opportunity to apply their knowledge and critical thinking skills they have gained from other MGEL courses.  This capstone course is specifically designed to provide hands-on experience in utilizing operational excellence principles, lean leadership strategies, process improvement methodologies, and business management techniques to address real-world challenges and make data-driven decisions.  This is accomplished throughout the semester with a thorough analysis and exploration of data and systems of a fictitious manufacturing company.

Throughout the course, students work with a comprehensive data set that represents various aspects of the fictitious business, including manufacturing, equipment utilization and maintenance, inventory management, human resource allocation, supply chain management, facility organization, customer experience, financial performance, visual management systems, and development of key performance indicators.  The data set presents students with realistic and complex scenarios, enabling them to analyze the current state of the business, identify areas for improvement, and develop strategies to drive operational excellence and business success. 

The course focuses on the integration of operational excellence principles, lean leadership strategies, and process improvement methodologies into the analysis and decision-making process.  Students apply Lean Six Sigma tools and statistical analysis to identify bottlenecks, reduce waste, and optimize business processes. They also explore strategies for engaging employees, managing change, and promoting a culture of learning and continuous improvement. 

In addition to process improvement, the course addresses broader business management concepts.  Students examine the relationship between operational excellence and key areas of business management, including strategic planning, performance measurement, risk management, and voice of the customer.  They develop a comprehensive understanding of how operational excellence initiatives align with the overall business strategy and contribute to organizational success. 

The course provides opportunities for students to present their findings and recommendations to the instructor.  These presentations enhance students' communication and presentation skills, as well as their ability to articulate their analytical insights and proposed solutions effectively. 

By the end of the course, students have gained a deeper understanding of how to apply operational excellence principles, lean leadership strategies, process improvement methodologies, and business management concepts to a complex and realistic business scenario. They are equipped with the skills to identify and solve operational challenges, make data-driven decisions, and lead improvement initiatives within organizations. 

Overall, this course provides students with an opportunity to work through scenarios with a fictitious business so they can understand how to identify and resolve complex business challenges in a controlled environment while utilizing the knowledge they have gained throughout their MGEL courses.  This enables students to refine their expertise and confidence necessary to excel in management roles and drive positive change within their work environment.