Operations Researcher

Operational researchers use mathematical, analytical and computational techniques to provide quantitative and qualitative information that will improve managerial decision-making. 

Operations researchers advise management on the rectifying of mistakes they make in the company or in their own lives. People often do not enjoy nor appreciate others pointing out their shortcomings, or trying to make drastic changes in their lives. It is, therefore, essential that the researcher build a positive relationship with the manager concerned, in which mentorship and persuasion become possible.

The aim is to develop alternatives. Operations researchers use quantitative techniques to find solutions to economic, managerial or financial problems. They are sometimes required to manage smaller businesses on a daily basis, or work at an international level. Some operations researchers are consultants at universities, other institutes or schools of business. However, most operations researchers are employed within one large company.

Operational research involves determining and clarifying strategic and operational problems via consultation with appropriate employees, outlining objectives, collecting, analysing and interpreting data, identifying and assessing possible strategies, presenting results that are easily understood and implementing agreed solutions.

A large proportion of the work involves numerical and computational analytical techniques, often using expert systems and artificial intelligence. Contact with managerial staff and other relevant personnel is a key feature of the job.

Operations researchers typically need to be proficient in database collection and management and programming and possibly the development and use of sophisticated software programs. They may have a background in Mathematics, Statistics, Informatics, Economics, Financial Accounting, Business Management and/or Computer Science.  important skills for operational researchers are good intellectual skills, logical skills, mathematical skills, problem-solving abilities, effective team-working skills, interpersonal skills, a diplomatic and persuasive manner and verbal and written communication skills.



  • small businesses

  • government

  • universities

  • mining houses

  • banks

  • technical specialists

  • self-employment

Getting Started

  • practise thinking in terms of solutions rather than getting bogged down with the problems

  • practise lateral thinking and other creative thinking skills

  • work on your public speaking skills and on your analytical and listening skills

  • speak to operations researchers about their work


All Saints University Lango, Catholic Institute of Kabgayi, Catholic University College of Ghana, Cavendish University, Durban University of Technology , Helderberg College NPC, ICESA City Campus, Institute of Development Management, KCA University, Kenya Highlands Evangelical University, Kenyatta University, Kepler Kigali, Kibabii University, Kigali Independent University, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology, Kyambogo University, Makerere University, Management College of Southern Africa (MANCOSA), Mega Size College, Meritorious Biz Tech College, Mount Kenya University, Mzumbe University, National University of Lesotho, National University of Science & Technology, Ndejje University, Nelson Mandela University, Nile Institute of Management Studies Arua, North-West University, Open Learning Group, Open University of Tanzania, Oval International Computer Education, Pentecost University College, Presbyterian University College, Production Management Institute of Southern Africa, Rongo University College, Rosebank College, Scott Christian University, Solusi University, South Eastern Kenya University, Southern Business School, St Paul's University, St. Augustine University of Tanzania, Tshwane University of Technology, Uganda Martyrs University, Uganda Technology and Management University, University for Development Studies, University of Botswana, University of Cape Coast, University of Dar Es Salaam, University of Eldoret, University of Ghana, University of Johannesburg, University of Kabianga, University of KwaZulu-Natal, University of Lusaka, University of Mauritius, University of Rwanda, University of Stellenbosch, Varsity College

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