ADMISSION NO: D61/75883/2014
DMS 511: OPERATION MANAGEMENT PRACTICE
ASSIGNMENT: CASE STUDY
______________________________________________________________________________ Question (a): Identify the operations at Nissan.
NMUK is split into three logical areas: Body Assembly, Paint and Final Assembly. Each is further broken down into areas known as 'shops'. 1. Press shop- The first shop in the manufacturing process, the Press Shop is responsible for pressing the outer and inner body panels of the vehicle. 2. Body shop -Linked directly to the Press Shop, the Body Shop is a highly-automated section of the factory. Pressed-panels are welded together to create complete body shells. 3. Body Paint shop - Painting finished bodies several times in a clean air environment with emissions controlled to surpass all likely regulations. 4. Plastics injection and blow molding shop - Plastic components such as bumpers, fuel tanks, radiator grills and facial parts are injection-moulded on site. 5. Casting shop -Aluminum engine components are produced in the state-of-the-art Casting plant. Engine parts and assembling them into a range of different models. 6. Final Assembly - Bringing together all the components to make finished cars. 7. Offices - Although the plant is made up primarily of manufacturing areas, there is also a large office complex, housing supporting functions including: Personnel, Community Relations, and Production Question (b): What are the main problems that managers face with operations at the Nissan Company? a. Demand Uncertainty and Fluctuations
b. Production issues
c. Capacity planning problems
d. Coordination issues
And how have the managers addressed them?
a. Varying hours worked (idle time); halting production i.e. no longer continuous and line speed reduction They may also have considered: varying the size of the workforce (laying off/ redundancy), using part time staff, sub contracting, carrying inventory When people are idle due to production adjustments, Nissan used the time to train employees. b. Level capacity plan - an approach to medium-term capacity management that attempts to keep output from an operation or its capacity, constant, irrespective of demand. an approach to medium-term capacity management that attempts to adjust output and/or capacity to reflect fluctuations in demand management - an approach to medium-term capacity management that attempts to change or influence demand to fit available capacity. c. Facilities decisions (long term/ strategic) – facilities and processes, physical capacity; NMUK relies heavily on Information Technology to function. Computer-controlled machinery, particularly in the Body Shop, is vital to production. Aggregate planning (medium term) – work force and production levels; staff at NMUK use a number of methods to ensure productivity remains high. Three of the main ones are Kaizen, Just in Time and Job Rotation. Scheduling – assignment of specific tasks, activities or jobs. Question (c): Discuss the operation strategies adopted by Nissan. a. Product Strategy and integrated product development - Effective product strategy requires selecting, designing and defining a product and then transitioning that product to production. Only with this strategy is carried out effectively can this production function contribute its maximum to the organization. The operations manager must build a product develop system that has the ability to conceive, design and produce products that will yield the competitive advantage for the firm. Product decision, therefore are fundamental to an organization’s strategy and have major implication throughout the operations function. For instance, Nissan’s diesel engines are a good example of the strong role product designs plays. b. Process Strategy - According to slack (2002) a major decision for the operations managers is finding the best way to produce. A process or transformation strategy is to find a way to...
References: 1. http://www.nissanglobal.com/EN/DOCUMENT/PDF/PRESEN/2008/080228_.pdf
2. Class notes
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