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Apple Inc.’s Strategic Operations Management


Operations management is an essential tool used for planning, monitoring, and organizing the business functions, especially the production processes of a company. It primarily focuses on enabling organizations to successfully convert their inputs to outputs while ensuring optimization of profits (Choi et al., 2018). Apple is a multinational corporation specializing in designing and manufacturing consumer goods such as smartphones, computers, and tablets. It is regarded as one of the most successful organizations to ever exist in the United States and is currently the leading brand in making cellphones. Its operations management involves using various strategies to ensure peak performance, such as the design of products and services, process and capacity design, quality management, and many other significant areas (Choi et al., 2018). This paper explores how Apple measures customer value, explores its mission statement and how it influences its operations management, TQM, and decision criteria for selecting an appropriate location or layout strategy.

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How Customer Value can be Measured for Apple’s Customers

Apple’s success over the years is attributed to several factors, especially how it exceeds the expectations of the customers. Since 2017, the American giant has utilized Net Promotor Score (NPS) as a metric for gauging the readiness of the consumers to recommend the organization’s products to other individuals (Fisher & Kordupleski, 2019). Therefore, it has played a critical role in helping the company and also as an indicator of success and the consumer’s brand loyalty. Apple has consistently used this metric to manage all its retail locations and workforce using NPS scores. Moreover, NPS feedback is collected and disseminated with store teams on a daily basis with a phone call from the store personnel (Fisher & Kordupleski, 2019). This metric tool has also been used in decision-making, ranging across staff promotions to long-term strategy.

Company’s Mission

Apple’s strategic landscape has enabled it to remain one of the leading technology companies in the world. Its corporate mission is to bring exceptional personal computing commodities and assistance to learners, educators, scientists, customers, business people, and engineers in at least 140 nations in the world (Yoffie & Cusumano, 2021). Over the years, the contributions of Apple to bring remarkable user experience to its target market through innovative software and hardware features. This mission declaration deliberates the changing business space that impacts the likelihood of what the American brand can do. For example, the organization identifies trends and developments in the consumer electronics industry.

Implications of Apple’s mission on its Strategic Operations Management Decisions

Apple’s scheduling involves the use of automation and manual processes. Under its automation activities, the company organizes tasks in the supply chain and its manufacturing processes. Therefore, the company’s mission statement influences this sector of its operations management (OM) by ensuring that its automation activities are developed to improve products and services offered to the customers (Yoffie & Cusumano, 2021). In contrast, Apple utilizes manual scheduling for its stores and corporate offices. Its mission statement ensures that this aspect of OM maximizes the capacity for utilization of human resources, facilities, and other resources (Yoffie & Cusumano, 2021). Another significant aspect of Apple’s OM is its capacity design which involves improving workforce capacity for commodity development and design. As such, its mission statement influences this aspect of its management by ensuring that its human resources practices are fine-tuned to ensure the production of quality software and hardware products (Yoffie & Cusumano, 2021). Its workforce management practices adhere to Steve Job’s initial emphasis on brilliance.

Apple’s Total Quality Management (TQM) Principles

Much of Apple’s success is attributed to its application of TQM principles. For example, its process approach involves having well-informed employees who assist the company in processing parts. The American brand builds a proactive decision-making process by measuring staff performance. Another aspect of TQM adopted by Apple is a customer-centric approach which involves maintaining quality in product production, developing strong supplier partnerships, customer-driven strategy, and upholding a fruitful customer relationship for future promotional acts (Aquilani et al., 2017). Employee involvement is also a vital aspect of Apple’s TQM, which ensures talent development and mentorship programs.

Decision Criteria for Selecting Location or Layout Strategy

Apple can apply decision criteria for choosing their preferred location or layout strategies based on several factors. First, the company can consider rent rates and taxes since the cost is a significant criterion when selecting a suitable location for stores. In the United States, rental rates are usually based on square feet, and as such, the corporation should consider lowering costs before choosing the right location (Choi et al., 2018). Another decisive factor would be workforce availability and labor skills. As such, Apple should deliberate on supply and demand before considering its layout and location strategies. Transport and communication facilities, especially roads, traffic flow, and highways, are also a deciding factor for selecting an appropriate location (Choi et al., 2018). Therefore, Apple should consider public transportation penetration, average traffic speed, accessibility to exit ramps, and highway inter-connectivity. Lastly, the American brand can also deliberate on its location in regard to the proximity of railway stations, airports, and seaports.


Apple remains one of the most productive corporations in the world. This paper has analyzed the strategic factors that have enabled the American brand to succeed in the consumer electronics segment. Steve Jobs has played a vital role in the growth and development of the company in the 21st century. The latter is considered a monumental figure in the organization’s history since its strategic elements originated from the novel ideas developed by the late business mogul. In essence, the company should continue investing in research and development while also improving its operations management practices for continued success.

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Aquilani, B., Silvestri, C., Ruggieri, A., & Gatti, C. (2017). A systematic literature review on total quality management critical success factors and the identification of new avenues of research. The TQM Journal. 29(1), pp. 184-213. Web.

Choi, T.-M., Wallace, S. W., & Wang, Y. (2018). Big data analytics in operations management. Production and Operations Management, 27(10), 1868–1883. Web.

Fisher, N. I., & Kordupleski, R. E. (2019). Good and bad market research: A critical review of Net Promoter Score. Applied Stochastic Models in Business and Industry, 35(1), 138–151. Web.

Yoffie, D. B., & Cusumano, M. A. (2021). Strategy Rules: Five Timeless Lessons from Bill Gates, Andy Grove, and Steve Jobs.

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