Bay Field Mud Company

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Bayfield Mud Company Team 8: : Ezra Bardo, Andrew Doucet, Kathleen Homsy & Courtney Orwick Operations Management Fall 2012 Professor Donald Sutton Background The Bayfield Mud Company produces and sells mudtreating agents to that are used in various drilling operations. Bayfields corporate offices and its largest plant are located in Orange, Texas. Issue Wet-land Drilling had filed a complaint that the 50 Pound bags of treating agents that it had just received from Bayfield were short-weight by approximately 5%. Bayfield indicated, however, that no changes had been made in the loading or palletizing procedures. Hence, Wet-Land randomly checked 50 of the bags and discovered that the average net weight was 47.51 pounds. They noted from past shipments that the bag net weights averaged exactly 50.0 pounds, with an acceptable standard deviation of 1.2 pounds. Consequently, they concluded that the sample indicated a significance short-weight. The quality control department at Bayfield suspected that the light-weight bags may have resulted from “growing pains” at the orange plant. Because of the earlier energy crises, oil and natural gas exploration activity had greatly increased. This increased activity, in turn, created increased demand for products produced by related industries, including drilling muds. Consequently, Bayfield had to expand from one shift (6 A.M. to 2 P.M.) to a two-shift (2 P.M. to 10 P.M.) operation in mid 2000, and finally to a three-shift operation (24 hours per day) in the fall of 2002. The additional night shift bagging crew was staffed entirely by new employees. The most experienced foremen were temporarily assigned to supervise the night shift employees. Most emphasis was placed on increasing the output of bags to meet the ever-increasing demand. It was suspected that only occasional reminders were made to double-check

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