Case 1

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Case Analysis 1: Hightone Electronics, Inc.

Identification Information:
This case analysis is from chapter 1 of our text book, Operations Management. It is found on page 25 and titled, "Hightone Electronics, Inc." Summary of the Facts of the Case:
Hightone Electronics, Inc. (HEI) is an electronic components supply company founded over 50 years ago. The company has a reputation for high quality and service. HEI's simple business of supplying radio repair shops with parts has grown to include home delivery, and larger customers such as technical schools, universities, and well-known corporations. The company stocks and sells over 22,000 different items and most customers receive their order within 48 hours.

George Gonzales is the operations director for HEI. He has been tasked with making operations management decisions necessary to make HEI a successful Internet-based business. Mr. Gonzales agrees that this is an important step for the future success of the company but believes there is more to solving the problems of the transition to web-based than the board thinks. Case Questions:

1. Explain why operations management is critical to the success of a business. Operations management (OM) is critical to the success of a business for several reasons. OM is responsible for the decision-making and leadership process that creates the product or service the business provides. The role of OM is to take inputs such as, labor, raw materials, and technology, and turn them into finished goods or services. Other functions of the business, such as marketing, are also important. But, without OM, there would not be a product/service to market to consumers. (Reid, 2-23) Why would developing an Internet-based business require different operations consideration for HEI? A traditional catalog-order business and an Internet-based catalog-order business would be very similar in general appearance. A transition to web-based ordering though, would require...
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