In the following sample essay about a practical example of production management FHE Inc. Read the introduction, body and conclusion of the essay, scroll down.
A Case Study on FHE Inc. Operations Management FHE Inc. Problem Statement FHE Inc. , a manufacturer of pumps and related fluid-handling equipment is reviewing the process used to introduce new products. Key Considerations It was stated in the case that this case was prepared as basis for class discussion, not to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of an administrative situation.
All information stated in this case analysis was taken from the Operations Management Book, authored by Roger G. Schroeder 3rd Edition. Analysis 1.
What steps should Donaldson take to improve the new-product development process at FHE? The steps necessary the Donaldson should take to improve the new product development process at FHE is to shift from the traditional sequential “over-the-wall” process of the new product development to concurrent process. The sequential process often results in product misalignment.
Sequential process is a traditional approach where processes are done in stages or steps shown in the figure below. Product misalignment occurs when problems occur during the new product development (i. e. he manufacturing department cannot make what the engineering department specifies due to technology limitations. ) The concurrent process shows a simultaneous development process where all functions of the marketing, engineering and operations are involved from beginning to the final stage of product launch. In the first stage, marketing has a major effort but other functions also have a role.
During the product design phase, marketing reduces its effort but not to zero, while engineering has the major role. Finally, operations picks up the lead as the new product is tested and launched into the market.
Concurrent process is shown below: 2. What could be done to clarify the organizational relationship between product managers, technical program managers and manufacturing managers? To clarify the organizational relationship between product managers, technical program managers and manufacturing managers is to have each department involved during each stage of the new product development. Each department doesn’t need to have same effort during each stage but to have each department involved concurrently. Not the over the wall traditional technique. 3.
What can be done to better manage the workload of the engineering services department? To manage better the workload of the engineering services department, FHE should have the engineering services department participate during the marketing stage where the company need s to evaluate what are the customer needs and translating it into customer specifications using concurrent process in new product development. 4. Evaluate the plans and the expected results from the new CAD-CAM system? The plans and expected results of using the new CAD-CAM system as a way of coordinating marketing, engineering and manufacturing.
Having these information system has its advantages and disadvantages. Pros * Rapid Prototyping * new products can be tested using software simulation without making it into a prototype * New products cycle would be faster using CAD-CAM process * Ease of Communication * Problems and issues can be addressed immediately between departments before specifications are relayed into the engineering department and sent to the manufacturing process * Improved Quality * Products are accurate based on what was designed by the engineering and sent to the manufacturing department
Cons * Garbage in – Garbage out * If design problems are not addressed initially in the engineering department, problems will be carried on unto the manufacturing department * High Investment Costs * A single user license of the Autodesk Inventor Software can cost up to $4,999 per license not to include the training costs incurred during the implementation of the new software. * Implementation Issues * Some of the personnel are technologically challenged and cannot understand the use of the new technology for the new development process Recommendations / Conclusion
FHE should adopt a new system of new product development especially they use the sequential approach. Problems cannot be addressed immediately until the product is turned over to the other department. Even stated in their gantt chart provided in the case, it clearly states the stair step method in their new product design. The concurrent process of new product design would be a better system than their current system with the aid of the CAD-CAM software to integrate new product design communications from the marketing, engineering and manufacturing department.