Case Study 1
Hovey and Beard Company
Hovey and Beard Company is a manufacturing industry in which specializes in a wide array of wooden toys and things of the like. The process begins in the wood room where toys are manufactured and transformed through a cut, sand, and partial assembly process. Toys are then dipped into shellac (varnish) and sent to the painting room. Painting was always completed by hand for many years until demand increase became too much. The painting operation was altered so that the painters sat in an assembly line where they would take toys off of hooks and spray them to then place them back on the hook for drying. The speed of the hook line was designed so that each trained painter would have enough time to grab a toy, spray it, and hang it back up before the next one arrived. With change in development came change in benefits. Painters were paid on a group bonus plan and would receive a learning bonus for training hours that would periodically decrease in sum each month. The six month learning period was set in place to vanish after said time when all employees were expected to be comfortable with the new system - that is, able to meet production standard and earn a group bonus when exceeded. After two months of training, it seemed to show that painters were learning more slowly than anticipated and it began to look as though production would fall far below what was planned. Many hooks were going by empty and painters complained that the process wasn’t working well resulting in job replacements. Complicating the learning process further, one painter whom the group regarded as its leader was outspoken in taking the complaints of the group. Complaints showed, the job was messy, hooks moved too fast, pay incentive was not correctly calculated, and working conditions were hot from being so close to the dryer. Overall, employees became increasingly disheartened, morale was...
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