Rio Bravo Iv Operations Management Case Study

2156 words - 9 pages

Executive Summary:Packard Electric Corp. is a leader in power and signal product distribution in the United States. They thought they could do the same thing outside of the US so they opened a plant in Juarez, Mexico to manufacture harnesses for US and other foreign customers. At the beginning, however their results were very poor. Probably, the most important issue was that none of the management had the necessary experience needed for their managerial positions and hardly anyone spoke Spanish. Also, the factory was very poorly equipped that could not compete with the lofty requirements of NUMMI - Packard's immediate customer. Packard was known for their high quality products but NUMMI's expectations were too high to satisfy. The first shipment was based on a 200-piece order for prototype vehicles. Packard put together their best employees, every part was carefully checked, and was packaged in perfect order. However, NUMMI and Toyota decided that the products had poor quality design and they were unhappy with the products. Later Packard hired Simitomo Wiring for their expertise in methods of producing outstanding quality and precision. They taught Packard but at the end of a six-month program, their shipment was rejected. After all that trouble Packard decided to implement elements of JIT and TQM, such as Kaizen, reduction of lead times, quick die changes, Kanban, and Visual management (Shoenberger, Knod, 1997).Packard Electric Corp. has successfully implemented several JIT and TQM programs. However, they could enhance the efficiency of operations in several sectors, such as automation of human/machine work, involvement of third parties to work on quality, flexibility, and service, and an adequate layout to decrease operations' wastage.Problem Definition:Packard Electric Corp. does not seem to have problems with implementing JIT and TQM. The task might be, however, that what more the plant could do to improve the efficiency of their operations.Analysis:At the moment Packard Electric seems to meet their goals to be a company that envisions continuous improvement, Just-in-time and TQM approaches. They experienced lack of expertise at the first place because the management came from places with different background than the position they jumped into. They could not respond on the level of NUMMI's quality requirements. The reason why it happened could be that Packard did not really understand the difference between their quality and NUMM's quality. Packard should have maintained some kind of a customer contact to find out the specification of NUMMI's word of quality. Packard, however underestimated the need to be customer oriented at the first place and, therefore the result was a reject of the shipment (Shoenberger, Knod, 1997).Moreover, when Packard did not seem to handle the 'reject' situation, they outsourced Sumitomo Wiring to help Packard to gain the expertise in continuous improvement process. This step could be viewed as a very positive one...

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