Action Learning

Operations Lab

Ops-Lab provides interactive learning opportunities by having students solve operations challenges in small, medium, and large companies across the US and the world.

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Operations Lab


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Credit: Nicholas Briggs

Ops-Lab team visiting HelloFresh warehouse for their onsite project.

15.784 Operations Lab

Operations Lab (Ops-Lab) provides interactive learning opportunities by having students solve operations challenges in small, medium, and large companies across the US and the world. Focus is typically on but not limited to problems in operations strategy, inventory and supply chain management, process improvement, operations analytics, and planning.

Dive deeper

Operations Lab is both a part of MIT Sloan, and MIT's Leaders for Global Operations (LGO) program, which fosters both management and technical skills. 

Learn more about the MIT LGO Program

WATCH: Leaders for Global Operations (LGO) program executive director Thomas Roemer on Operations Lab

Operations Lab


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Enhancing efficiency

Ops-Lab students work with their host companies to streamline operations in a variety of industries. From improving sustainable practices, to increasing space in warehouses, Ops-Lab students are helping company processes become more efficient. 

Ops-Lab Impact Stories

See older Ops-Lab Impact Stories

Operations Lab

Info for students

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Credit: Nicholas Briggs

Ops-Lab student and host working together in Wayfair warehouse.

The class

Ops-Lab lectures focus on project management, methods, team report-outs and discussion.

Projects that are local to Boston involve regular (weekly) visits to the host company site. During these visits, students engage directly with the employees, observing and assessing the processes and operations associated with the project scope. Projects outside the Boston area involve weekly calls with the company and require travel to the host company site during spring SIP week, where students also work with employees and assess company processes. The projects are done in teams of three or four students. The assignment of projects may give preference to students who are involved in sourcing them.

Interested in applying?

Ops-Lab is an application only course, and is open to Sloan MBAs, LGOs, and other Sloan and MIT grad students. 

Operations Lab

Info for hosts

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Credit: Nicholas Briggs

Ops-Lab team working at Gorton's of Gloucester warehouse for their onsite project.

The benefits of becoming a host organization

Organizations participating in Operations Lab have the unique opportunity to solve operations challenges that they may be facing with the help of our students. With the support of Action Learning mentors, students actively develop a relationship with host organizations and work with them in order to create deliverables that hosts can immediately use to help them improve operations. 

Projects mainly focus on:

  • Inventory and supply chain management
  • Operations analytics
  • Operations strategy
  • Planning
  • Process improvement 

Interested in becoming a host?

Please contact Cathy Iacobo with your questions and proposals. 

Host Timeline

  • Summer

    Potential project hosts are identified.

  • September

    Student-led committee contacts potential hosts to capture specific project proposals and other necessary information. 

  • October-November

    Faculty review the proposals and a final project list is identified (Goal: Have a few more projects than number of student teams in case there are any last minute issues.

  • November

    Students register for Ops-Lab.

  • December-January

    Student teams formed; team/project matching completed. 

  • January

    E-introductions between student teams and hosts. 

  • February

    Spring semester begins; students officially kick off projects with their respective hosts. 

Operations Lab


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Operations Lab Faculty

Cathy Louise Iacobo

Cathy Louise Iacobo

Leaders for Global Operations Program

Lecturer, Global Economics and Management

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Thomas Roemer

Thomas Roemer

Management Science

Director, Leaders for Global Operations Senior Lecturer, Operations Management

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Operations-Lab Mentors

David Birnbach

David Birnbach

Behavioral and Policy Sciences

Lecturer, Global Economics and Management

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Ted Equi

Ted Equi

Manager, Research, Internships, and Career Development, LGO Program

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