Discussion 6

Introduction

Kibby and Strand is going through a tough month.  Customer complaints  are up, and most indicate quality issues with recently shipped orders.  The company has managed to keep market share against less expensive  foreign textiles because it makes quality products, which loyal  customers are willing to pay more for. At last quarter’s production  meeting the operations manager expressed concerns that marketing was  promising customers delivery dates that were too tight, and it appears  quality may have suffered in an effort to meet the short deadlines.

The CEO sends a memo to the Chief of Operations (you), asking what is  going on with quality. She is looking at a summary of customer  complaints for the past month, and most deal with poor stitching or  incorrect sizes on the labels of shirts and shorts. To compound her  concerns, the Chief of Marketing just told her that some customers are  threatening to cancel future orders before the Christmas season if the  quality issues are not resolved ASAP.

In this scenario, the CEO and Chief of Marketing are relying solely  on qualitative data obtained from customer service agents. Without a  doubt this qualitative data cannot be ignored, because it comes directly  from customers, but what percentage of the finished products produced  that month were flawed?

In other words, how big of a quality problem are  we dealing with?

To really understand the true nature and scope of this problem, Kibby  and Strand also need to use quantitative approaches to collect,  analyze, and interpret numeric data so that the information generated  can be leveraged to formulate lasting solutions which lower outcome  variability to within acceptable limits (e.g., statistical process  control).

It isn’t possible to eliminate variation in process outcomes,  since there exists some level of “natural” variation in all processes.  The key is to lower the variation to statistically acceptable levels.  When there is too much variation in a process the costs associated with  the process will be high due to the operating inefficiency; outcomes  will be challenging to predict, which impacts quality; and the bottom  line performance associated with the process will be virtually  impossible for forecast. Remember, quality control and improvement is  focused on strengthening the efficiency and effectiveness of “processes”  and that not all problems are appropriately investigated using more  sophisticated quantitative methodologies, for example, disciplinary  issues with personnel.

 

Unit Learning Outcomes

  1. Formulate a plan to manage quality in an organization’s products and  services, and incorporate quality improvement. (CLO 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and  7)
  2. Prepare a Pareto diagram for evaluating quality improvement measures into an organization. (CLO 1, 3, 4, 5, and 6)
  3. Identify whether quality management metrics are adequate to ensure organizational goals are met. (CLO 1, 4 and 7)
  4. Develop a data collection plan that will permit the appropriate  application of statistical process control (SPC) to investigate  inefficiencies and or ineffective processes. (CLO 3 and 4)
  5. Calculate critical inventory management metrics such as economic  order quantity and economic production quantity. (CLO 2, 4, and 5)

Directions

Accessing McGraw-Hill Connect

Follow these steps to view the scenario.

Initial Posting

You are the Production Department manager at Kibby and Strand, and  last month there were complaints from customers that the quality of the  products shipped to them was lacking. Some shirts were labeled with  incorrect sizes and girl’s shorts had weak stitching that did not meet  specifications. The Operations Manager tasks you to prepare a plan for  conducting a Root Cause Analysis (RCA) to identify the causes of these  quality issues.

In addition, he recently read the article 3 Ways to Manage Garment Quality Control (Links to an external site.) and prepare a paper detailing how the quality inspections in the article can be implemented within Kibby and Strand.

The student is to create the RCA plan and paper based on knowledge  learned in the scenario, and post it in the discussion.  Note: it is not  possible to actually conduct the RCA and document findings because the  data is not provided in the scenario.

The RCA plan and paper should be prepared in a single Microsoft™ Word  document, and then attached to the unit discussion thread. There is no  minimum or maximum in terms of the word count; however, the response  should explicitly address all required components of this discussion  assignment. The document should be prepared consistent with the APA  writing style (6th edition) and reflect higher level cognitive processing (analysis, synthesis and or evaluation).

Instruction Guidance: It would be prudent to  consider content covered in chapters 9 and 13 of the textbook; however,  there are many other useful resources available on the Internet and in  the literature to support the construction of your action plan.

This plan and memo should be prepared in a single Microsoft™ Word  document, and then attached to the unit discussion thread. There is no  minimum or maximum in terms of the word count; however, the response  should explicitly address all required components of this discussion  assignment. The document should be prepared consistent with the APA  writing style (6th edition) and reflect higher level cognitive processing (analysis, synthesis and or evaluation).

 
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