MT435 Operations Management
Albatross Anchors is a family-owned business which was established in 1976, located on twelve acres in a rural suburb of Smalltown in the United States. Albatross Anchor started with four family members, and has essentially grown to one hundred and thirty employees. Their operations started off as manufacturers of bell/mushroom anchors but as of 1989, the owners decided to expand the product line to include fabricated snag hook anchors. The Albatross Anchors only distributes their products to wholesale, through distributors that act as the middleman and OEM customers that purchase anchors in large batches. Their building consists of administrative offices, the foundry, manufacturing and large machine areas, shipping and receiving, as well as raw and finished products area. The building is not in good standards, is need of upgrades and expansions, and must adhere to government guidelines. Albatross Anchors doesn’t seem to have any complaints from their customers and are doing rather well despite the inefficiencies at hand. We are certain that the organization has the potential to meet the needs of the customers, but we must make some adjustments through an operational management plan. KU consulting is an organization that assists companies in re-structuring their organizations to be able to maximize their profits and bring them in line with their competitors. Question One
Carefully review the assignment scenario/case study. From the limited information in the scenario/case study, along with your answers to the unit three written assignment, identify at least three direct and specific long-term and three direct and specific short term operations changes that Albatross Anchor must make to gain a clear and sustainable competitive advantage (provide detailed information to validate and support each recommended change) Long-Term Operational Changes
(01) The plant overall is outdated and technology deprived. The administrative offices are shabby, disorganized, and run inefficiently. The plant is antiquated, worn dirty, and no longer meets all US safety and environmental standards. To stay within compliance the company should follow US Safety and environmental standards and update technology to meet these standards. Improving technology will increase efficiency and effectiveness throughout the plant. (02) Another long term operation change that Albatross Anchors needs to make is expanding the warehouse work space so that there is not a 36 hour turn around when switching between the two types of anchors that are being made. It seems that Albatross Anchors loses a lot of money and time by having to switch everything over when manufacturing the anchors and having more work space will help alleviate this. A re-design of the plant will allow a continuous flow of the merchandise that will not be impeded by the production floor itself. This coupled with an inventory control system, automated machine technology and computerized office systems should reduce any inefficiency that the company is now experiencing. (03) Albatross Anchors Company is still using the same process it was the first day it opened in 1976. Becoming more updated in technology will keep them from losing time and money. Installing up to date technology into the warehouse and administrative offices will help to gain business and give the company a more smooth transition when taking orders and shipping and receiving materials. Considering new alternatives such as using, replacing, adding additional capacity, and upgrading or purchasing existing equipment will maximize their production as well as their profits. Technology is essential for the company to stay competitive with the other firms.
Short-Term Operational Changes
(01) Albatross Anchor needs to update the environmental standards of their plant to bring them up to code. This will not only...