BUS 644 Week 1 – Assignment Midas Case
BUS 644 Week 1 – Assignment Midas Case
Read the “Midas” case study in Chapter 2 of your text and respond to the guided response below in a three-page paper in accordance with APA guidelines as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center. In this paper you must:
• Discuss the anticipated impacts (both positive and negative) upon operating efficiencies, and recommend solutions to minimize the negative impacts.
• Discuss whether or not operating practices should be changed to accommodate the tune-ups. Be sure to explain your reasoning.
• Examine the reasons why input should be gathered from the shop owners.
• Discuss the type of input that should be gathered.
• Describe the processes and steps needed to launch this new program.
Your paper should be in paragraph form (avoid the use of bullet points) and supported with the concepts outlined in your text and additional scholarly sources.
Submit your three-page paper (not including the title and reference pages). Your paper must be formatted according to APA style as outlined in the Ashford Writing Center and must cite at least three scholarly sources in addition to the textbook.
Midas Case Study from textbook:
Assume that Midas is deciding whether it should add engine tune-ups to its existing product line. Top management has called you in as a consultant to help it to analyze this opportunity. The first thing the consultant asks you to do is read the Midas and Genoa Ford Feature in this chapter.
Management is concerned about the impact that this new service will have on existing operations. Presently, the company has a policy that customers will not wait longer than 30 minutes for muffler service. How can Midas maintain that pledge? What methods for scheduling tune-up service might make it easier for Midas to keep its pledge? If reaction to the new service is great, the shops may not have the capacity to satisfy demand. Should the company add capacity to existing shops to take the extra load, or should it add more shops? How will the shop owners react to the new proposal? Assume that most of the shops are very profitable. Will the owners want higher profits?
Midas\'s management is looking for help in organizing its thinking and has asked you to respond to the following questions in a two-page report. Your responses should include the critical issues raised in the previous paragraph.
1. What are the anticipated impacts upon operating efficiency? How would you attempt to minimize the negative impacts?
2. Should some operating practices be changed to accommodate the tune-ups?
3. Should input be gathered from the shop owners? If so, what?
4. If Midas decides to launch this new program, how should it begin?
1. To be successful, organizations should focus on customer requirements. List the ways operations can help satisfy customer requirements, and discuss each briefly.
To be successful at building competitive advantage, organizations should know who their customers are and what their customers want. Operations can help satisfy customer requirement.
a. Meeting specific customer needs: Customizing the product to meet specific customer requirements increases customer satisfaction. Organizations need to find ways to meet these needs that do not increase cost.
b. Quick response: Having products available for customers upon request is an advantage. Late delivery may increase costs, lower customer satisfaction, and create other problems. Early delivery often creates storage problems, creates the potential for theft or damage as the item sits in inventory, and increases the need for working capital to carry inventory.
c. Product performance and features: Organizations that design high-performing services and goods are preferred by consumers. This is especially true when these features and performance are acquired for little or no additional costs.
d. Product Quality: A product should be able to meet customers\' expectations and perform the work they want. Product quality should be broadly defined to include fitness for use.
e. Price: Price is the other half of the value question, and is an important part of the purchase decision.
f. Service: It may include equipment installation and after-sales-service such as advice on operating equipment and providing repair parts. For services it could include on-line information on product availability or other forms of support.
2. How can the following attributes help an organization achieve competitive advantage?
d. Supply chain management
e. Customer relationship management
3. a. Flexibility is the ability to change between products with minimal costs and delays. With the flexibility to produce a wide variety of products, marketing can meet customer demand as closely as possible. Timely deliveries are possible because flexibility implies that inexpensive and quick changes can be made from one product to another. Changeover costs are reduced, which reduces operating costs. Finally, when sudden shifts in market preference occur, the cost to redesign facilities and equipment is reduced because the system can more easily adapt to producing new and different products.
b. Productivity improvements can provide the organization with a competitive edge. In any situation there are limited resources, limits on capital and equipment, material, energy and labor. Moreover, none of these resources are free. If an organization produces more and better products with fewer resources, it will achieve two distinct advantages. First, the unit costs of the product will decline because less labor is required, making the product more competitive. Second, there will be unused resources that can be applied to develop and produce new and better products.
c. High quality, which can be defined as fitness for use, can be achieved at high costs and there will always be a market for these exclusive products. However, mass market appeal requires the right blend of improved quality and lower costs. An organization that produces a higher quality product than its competition while using fewer resources (lower costs) will be able to quickly increase its share of the market.
d. Supply Chain Management is about ensuring that supply chains that produce the goods and provide the services are working effectively. Supply chains encompass all activities associated with the flow and transfer of goods and services from raw material extraction through use by the organization that sells to the final consumer. Supply chain management is the integration of these activities through improved supplier relationships to achieve a sustainable competitive advantage for all members in the supply chain.
e. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a process to create, maintain, and enhance strong, associations with customers, both individuals and organizations. CRM moves beyond transactions to build long-term relationships with valued customers, distributors, and dealers. Increasingly, firms are focusing on building mutually beneficial relationships with customers, distributors, and dealers instead of working to maximize the profit on any individual transaction. This can include interactions that involve financial benefits, learning customer needs and working to meet those, and providing support staff to help customers.
4. Why are the following business processes important?
a. Strategy development
b. Product development
c. Systems to produce goods and services
d. Order fulfillment
5. a. A strategy considers the threats and opportunities in the environment, and it measures the strengths and weaknesses of the organization. These are inputs to strategy development. The strategy development process provides a path to the organization\'s objectives. This path includes goals, actions plans for achieving these goals, and related resource requirements. Strategy is the overall mechanism for coordinating organizational efforts.
b. Product development involves creating the product ideas and transforming these ideas into the new products which customers desire. Without an effective product development process, an organization would fail as, one-by-one, its products would be replaced by better products from its competitors.
c. Once product ideas are generated and product designs are created, it is necessary to create the systems that will produce them. This involves the acquisition of resources (facilities, equipment, and people) that enable the organization to make the good or provide the service. This includes decisions about capacity, facility location, and facility layout as well as many other critical decisions.
d. Order fulfillment is the process of satisfying a specific customer order. It involves all the steps required to satisfy a customer order from obtaining an order and entering it into the company\'s information system to delivering the order. Order fulfillment is a highly integrative, teamwork-oriented process that includes many disciplines and activities such as sales, credit verification, analysis of working capital needs, and selecting shipping routes and transportation alternatives.
6. How and why are operations strategically important?
7. Strategy begins with the organization\'s goals and includes the key policies that are established to provide direction for meeting those goals. Operating advantages should be pursued because they fit the organization\'s goals, not because they fit some narrowly defined operating objective. When properly used, operations can be an important tool for improving profits, increasing market share, and developing new markets. For example, increasing flexibility in operations can reduce delivery lead time and enhance the product variety available to the customer. Process improvements can increase product quality and lower the costs of the product. When operational plans are linked with organizational plans, operations become part of the team that is working to reach the organization\'s goals. Linking operational plans to the plans of other functional areas within an organization can have a positive synergistic effect. For example, marketing and operations should work together to develop new products and processes for better meeting the customer needs.
8. How can an organization link corporate strategy and operations? Describe the process.
9. To link strategy and operations, management needs a strategic, top down view of operations. The steps involved in linking strategy to operations are: 1) Analysis of competitive situation (external environment); 2) Appraisal of an organization\'s skills and resources; 3) Formulation of corporate strategy; 4) Implications of corporate strategy for operating strategy; 5) Examination of the limitations of economics and technology on operations; 6) Systems design for operations; 7) Planning and managing operations.
10. Describe the role of computer and information technology in improving operations.
11. The use of computers in business is not new. Computers monitor inventory levels and help to control quality. They are also used to monitor flow processes. Computers provide feedback and self-correct problems. Computers are also used to control metal cutting machines. Computers help organize incoming orders, schedule production and summarize results. Two growing areas for computer applications are decision support systems and manufacturing automation. This new dual role for computers is often called Computer Integrated Manufacturing (CIM). CIM blends recent developments in manufacturing with information technology to achieve competitive advantage.
12. Describe some ways that manufacturing operations can use computer and information technology to gain competitive advantage.
13. Computer-based control systems can be combined with manufacturing technology, such as robots, machine tools, and automated guided vehicles, to improve manufacturing operations. In this role, the computer can assist in integrating these technologies into a lean and efficient factory capable of competing in world markets. Computer-integrated manufacturing (CIM) blends developments in manufacturing with information technology to achieve competitive advantage. When properly organized, CIM offers the opportunity to automate design, manufacturing, and production planning and control. An expert system uses human knowledge that has been stored in a computer to help the manager solve complex problems. A decision support system is a model-based set of procedures (or business rules) for processing data to assist managers in decision making.
14. Describe some ways that service operations can use computer and information technology to gain competitive advantage. Why are these methods different from those used by manufacturers?
15. Many operations, which are categorized as service operations, actually provide a combination of services and goods. Restaurants and supermarkets are a good example. These operations can use some of the manufacturing technologies described in the text. For example, supermarkets can use sophisticated computer controlled warehousing and distribution systems to control inventory costs and significantly reduce the chance of a stock out.
However, for many services the tangible portion of their product is insignificant. In these cases, managers cannot buffer demand from the production process with finished goods inventory. This forces managers to find different approaches to smoothing differences between the organization\'s ability to provide the service and customer demand.
These problems have led managers of service operations to implement information systems that provide extremely current and accurate information. With this, service organizations can provide customers with the latest information about availability of service by time and locations. It also allows managers to make the best possible decisions.
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