1) (a) What role could the Activity Based Management system play in East River’s continuous improvement efforts? Based on my understanding of the question and restricted to information available in the case only I believe that East River focused on adopting an automated system because they were not able to bid for contracts competitively. East River has invested time and money into automation process and implemented Computer-integrated manufacturing system. Then it implemented Activity Based Costing (ABC). However plant accounting staff had felt the manual system in place was adequate due to labour paced manual line was used.
Their business model centered on the more traditional product, which was quickly falling out of favor with customers. Meanwhile the company did not apparently had any mechanism to encourage innovation and creativity. Stef was largely inspired by the sustainability movement, in particular the Cradle to Cradle® concept. Most likely he thought such an exciting concept would provide strong source of inspiration for DESSO’s innovations. Assessment of sustainability as a possible competitive advantage for DESSO I think that sustainability can become a competitive advantage for DESSO, for the following reasons: * The Cradle to Cradle® concept can be seen as a strategic innovation in the industry.
The HP management didn’t control the team as they should have done. The Kittyhawk developers had too much confidence. The budget was more than sufficient, so they didn’t need to prove their rightness from time to time in order to get additional funding. There ware also too many things to be done by just one group of employees: product development, market researches, search for and negotiations with the potential buyers of the product. In a situation when the market for this product even didn’t exist - there was a big lack of internal control which could be provided by other groups if the tasks had been distributed among them.
First, companies face strong incentives to focus on the short term. Put simply, although new products and services may be essential for future growth and profit, companies must first survive today to be around tomorrow. That necessity tends to focus companies strongly on making incremental improvements to keep sales up and current customers—as well as Wall Street analysts—happy. Second, developers simply don't know how to achieve breakthroughs, because there is usually no effective system in place to guide them and support their efforts. The latter is a problem even for a company like 3M, long Reprinted by permission of Harvard Business Review.
As they built up obsolescing inventory, labor costs, and accounts payable costs, in anticipation of customers that may or may not actually ever present to the company to make a purchase, Dell’s competitors tied up significant funds in working capital. Therefore Dell’s competitors were prevented from using that cash for other purposes. Also as technology improved, these firms were slow incorporating the new technology into their products due both to a lack of cash and an inventory of out-of-date products that could not be effectively sold along-side the Dell’s faster, newer models. How did Dell fund its 52% growth in 1996? -- To figure out how did Dell fund its 52% growth in 1996, we need analyse Dell’s performance in both the years.
As a consequence, the workers no longer believe the input/outcome ratio is comparable and lose motivation. The company has been incorrectly focusing on Maslow’s physiological needs such as salary and bonuses. Employees are more driven by esteem needs and being rewarded for knowledge, not just productivity. McClelland’s Need Theory addresses the need for affiliation by expressing emotions and developing warm, close, intimate relationships. Although the company attempted to increase affiliation through suggestions and community meetings, following the downturn, issues of distrust and potential pilfering squandered these relationships and subsequent motivation.
Recommendations Ben & Jerry’s takeover by Unilever resulted in changes to the business strategy; changes that were needed to address an increasingly competitive economic landscape and recover the market value of the firm. In some cases the new strategy was not aligned with the core values that underlie Ben & Jerry’s strong culture, i.e. the decision to terminate large numbers of employees in order to create operating efficiency in finance, manufacturing, and distribution. However, the alignment of many of the core values on which Ben & Jerry’s culture is based is unclear. The two companies appear to share values related to corporate social responsibility, but employees question whether Ben & Jerry’s previous commitments on issues like product purity and providing a public voice on social issues fit into the new business strategy.
• Though there was a Robust ERP system, the system failed due to major inconsistency of important information across different parts of the corporation. This made it difficult for executives to monitor and compare performance. • Even with Data warehouse initiatives, there were issues of the technical expertise required to extract meaningful data from the warehouse and data useful for predicting the future. • SYSCO’s competitive advantage was dependent of the decision of Twila Day to implement the BI Software, which would give SYSCO an advantage over its competitors. Initiative Objectives/Benefits No Objectives Benefits 1. Business Intelligence Software gave users access to data that was relevant to them • Avoid the need for employees to write complicated database queries or engage in programming tasks.
It was a minor flaw that doctors were not involved in the initial trials to point out some critical design flaws. It is important to have proper market research by talking to customers or the end user before continuing on. This happened to turn out alright though since Newland was forced to have several suppliers where quality could be monitored more closely. Although quality was improved, manufacturing lead time was reduced in order to coordinate several different suppliers.. Newland was debating whether to focus on improving manufacturing capacity, which would boost appeal as an acquisition for potential buyers. I would recommend that they do pursue investing in manufacturing to help sell their product since their original strategy was to have the company acquired from outside investors.
As time progressed customers lost that level of commitment to the stores. That loyalty that they felt was no longer present. The CEO felt that this diminished level of emotional connection to kinkos was because their services were not differentiated. They offered nothing that other stores did not. (case) Despite all the measures that kinko’s executive learn led by CEO and president Gary kusin had taken to cut cost and place the company in a position of sustained profits, revenue generation seemed to have been elusive ideal.