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Analyze the different Operational Management (OM) perspective of Walmart Essay

Analyze the different Operational Management (OM) perspective of Walmart. Identify the following by writing a paper (with paragraphs, including an introductory, body, and concluding section): 1) The organization’s name and main line of business,

2) A specific type of operations process that takes place there (either service or product), 3) Describe the nature of the operations given your newfound understanding of operations management and productivity. 4) You may identify the strategy or global strategy of that organization. Turn in your one to two page paper by the Module due date.

Walmart Stores, Inc. or Walmart is an American public corporation that runs a chain of large, discount department stores. It is the world’s largest public corporation by revenue, Founded by Sam Walton in 1962, it was incorporated on October 31, 1969, and listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1972. It is the largest private employer in the world and the fourth largest utility or commercial employer. Walmart is the largest grocery retailer in the United States, with an estimated 20% of the retail grocery and consumables business. It also owns and operates the North American company, Sam’s club. The operations that take place in Walmart are specifically related to products. Walmart has a systematic approach to conducting its operations. It is able to understand the issues and problems to be studied, measures of performances to be established and uses scientific and analytical tools to develop effective and efficient solutions to the problems at hand.

Irrespective of the nature of organization and the activities it performs every organization needs to incorporate marketing finance and human resources activities to its operations. This operation process is the conversion process. These four forms the basic functions of any organisation.and are mutually interactive.oerations come at the core of every organizational activity and bind the functional areas together. Productivity and efficiency of work is determined by an efficient system of operations. Hence operations forms are very important process of work flow and .corporate level strategies must first be made and then translated into operational strategies. Operation management functions encompass product design and development, process design, location and layout of facilities, capacity planning, forecasting, production planning and control, supply chain management, maintenance management and continued improvement in operations.

The strategy of Walmart is to extend its products to every possible household and make every product available to the common man through its wide network of stores all over the USA.the strategy is also to provide empowerment and work to as many people as it can and make the supply chain management a very safe and profitable process. it gets its groceries from unknown and untapped resources thereby making it a virtual assembly house of varied manufactured products. Project 2

Consider Wal-Mart. Integrate the concepts and operations management principles that you’ve been studying in this module and turn in your one to two page paper addressing the following questions: How project management influence other departments and functions of this organization (i.e., marketing, finance, accounting, human resources, etc.)? What are the difficulties or limitations for implementing PERT and CRM in the organization? Operations are a key functional area in an organization. Irrespective of the activities and the type of business every organization has few important activities to perform. This encompasses operations, marketing, finance and human resources management.

Operations pertain to managing the conversion process in an organization. The marketing function is concerned with understanding the requirements of the customers cresting a demand for the products and services and satisfying the customer requirements by delivering the right product and services to the customers at the right time. In order to perform the various activities pertaining to operations and marketing finance is needed for tapping the market for funds and managing the working capital. These activities constitute the finance function. Every organization employs a number of people with varied skills background and work requirements. Managing the workforce and addressing a host of issues related to them is called human resources management.hrence these four form the basic functions of any organization

The basic functions of an organization.
The four functions have mutual interactions between them. The decisions taken in each of these functional areas could form an important input in another functional area. Typically, organizations begin their yearly plan with the marketing function of estimating next year’s sales. This input forms the basis for production planning, procurement planning and all these lead to certain estimate of the funds required. This forms an important input for the finance function.wjhile planning has such a sequence of information flows and interactions at the time of executions interactions are even more. The HRM function influences the productive capacity of manpower available in real time the actual production of gods influences the marketing activity to be undertaken and the quantum and timing of funds available from sales.

Hence project management influences every department in an organization. It is difficult to implement PERT because it is a product industry and as such Pert is normally suited to a service industry of where there are many projects taking off Walmart being primarily a goods industry does not require PERT. Customer Relationship management is a though study by the organization of the customer behavior and relationship. Walmart’s customer base is so huge that it seems impossible to maintain a CRM of that size. Furthermore the customer is from varied backgrounds and Walmart will not have any use for this. It becomes very expensive to initialize something like this for the size of Walmart.

Project 3
At the Hard Rock Cafe, like many organizations, project management is a key planning tool. With Hard Rock’s constant growth in hotels and cafes, remodeling of existing cafes, scheduling for Hard Rock Live concert and event venues, and planning the annual Rockfest, managers rely on project management techniques and software to maintain schedule and budget performance. “Without Microsoft Project,” says Hard Rock Vice-President Chris Tomasso, “there is no way to keep so many people on the same page.” Tomasso is in charge of the Rockfest event, which is attended by well over 100,000 enthusiastic fans. The challenge is pulling it off within a tight 9-month planning horizon. As the event approaches, Tomasso devotes greater energy to its activities. For the first 3 months, Tomasso updates his MS Project charts monthly.

Then at the 6-month mark, he updates his progress weekly. At the 9- month mark, he checks and corrects his schedule twice a week. Early in the project management process, Tomasso identifies 10 major tasks (called level 2 activities in a work breakdown structure, or WBS):† talent booking, ticketing, marketing/PR, online promotion, television, show production, travel, sponsorships, operations, and merchandising. Using a WBS, each of these is further divided into a series of subtasks. The following table identifies 26 of the major activities and subactivities, their immediate predecessors, and time estimates. Tomasso enters all of these into the MS Project software. Tomasso alters the MS Project document and the time line as the project progresses. “It’s okay to change it as long as you keep on track,” he states.

The day of the rock concert itself is not the end of the project planning. “It’s nothing but surprises. A band not being able to get to the venue because of traffic jams is a surprise, but an ‘anticipated’ surprise. We had a helicopter on stand-by ready to fly the band in,” says Tomasso. On completion of Rockfest in July, Tomasso and his team have a 3-month reprieve before starting the project planning process again. Please turn in a paper of one to two pages (page counting does not include cover and reference list) discussing the following questions,

The critical path is A-D-E-F-G-O
The project completion time is 34 weeks.
2. Identify some major challenges a project manager faces in events such as this one. To plan thoroughly all aspects of the project, soliciting the active involvement of all functional areas involved, in order to obtain and maintain a realistic plan that satisfies their commitment for performance.

To control the organization of manpower needed by the project

To control the basic technical definition of the project, ensuring that “technical” versus “cost” trade-offs determine the specific areas where optimisation is necessary.

To lead the people and organizations assigned to the project at any given point in time. Strong positive leadership must be exercised in order to keep the many disparate elements moving in the same direction in a co-operative.

To monitor performance, costs and efficiency of all elements of the project and the project as a whole, exercising judgement and leadership in determining the causes of problems and facilitating solutions

To complete the project on schedule and within costs, these being the overall standard by which performance of the project manager is evaluated.

Project 4
Global firms like Regal Marine know that the basis for an organization’s existence is the good or service it provides society. Great products are the keys to success. With hundreds of competitors in the boat business, Regal Marine must work to differentiate itself from the flock. Regal continuously introduces innovative, high-quality new boats. Its differentiation strategy is currently reflected in a product line consisting of 22 models. But why must Regal Marine constantly worry about designing new boats? The answer is that every product has a life cycle. Products are born. They live and they die. As Figure 5.1 shows, a product’s life cycle can be divided into four phases: introduction, growth, maturity, and decline.

Figure 5.2 shows the four life cycle stages and the relationship of product sales, costs, and profit over the life cycle of a product. When Regal is developing a new model boat, it typically has a negative cash flow. If the boat is successful, those losses may be recovered and yield a profit prior to its decline. The life cycle for a successful Regal boat is three to five years.

To maintain this stream of innovative new products, Regal constantly seeks design input from customers, dealers, and consultants. Design ideas rapidly find themselves in Regal’s styling studio, where Computer Aided Design (CAD) technology speeds the development process. A Regal design engineer can start with a rough sketch or even just an idea and use the graphic display power of CAD as a drafting board to construct the geometry of the new boat. The CAD system helps the designer determine engineering data such as the strength, dimensions, or weight. It also allows the designer to be sure all parts will fit together. Existing boat designs are always evolving as the company tries to stay stylish and competitive. Moreover, with life cycles so short, a steady stream of new products is required. A few years ago, the new product was the 3-passenger $11,000 Rush, a small, but powerful boat capable of pulling a water-skier.

The next year, it was a 20-foot inboard-outboard performance boat with so many innovations that it won prize after prize in the industry. Then it was a redesigned 42-foot Commodore that sleeps six in luxury staterooms. With all these models and innovations, Regal designers and production personnel are under pressure to respond quickly. By getting key suppliers on board early and urging them to participate at the design stage, Regal improves both innovations and quality while speeding product development. Regal finds that the sooner it brings suppliers on board, the faster it can bring new boats to the market. The first stage in actual production is the creation of the “plug,” a foam-based carving used to make the molds for fiberglass hulls and decks. Specifications from the CAD system drive the carving process. Once the plug is carved, the permanent molds for each new hull and deck design are formed. Molds take about 4-8 weeks to make and are all handmade. Similar molds are made for many of the other features in Regal boats–from galley and stateroom components to lavatories and steps. Finished molds can be joined and used to make thousands of boats.

Please turn in a paper of one to two pages (page counting does not include cover and reference list) discussing the following questions, 1. How does the concept of product life cycle apply to Regal Marine products? 2. What strategy does Regal use to stay competitive?

3. What kind of benefits are Regal achieving by using CAD technology rather than traditional drafting techniques?

Project 4
The product life cycle that applies to regal marine products is new boats every three to five years. To be competitive every boat that is manufactured has four stages .the introduction and the design conceptualization is the most important stage. Once the design has been conceptualized it becomes easy to transfer the design into an acceptable model through the CAD models. Then it is introduced into the market’. The innovations and the new design boats help the market and it grows fast that the entire market is full of the new design boats from regal marines. This is the maturity stage of the boat life cycle. Every boat lover has a new boat design of regal marines and then the stagnation starts and the sales of boat decline gradually at first and then very quickly. this is a sure sign that the life cycle of the new design is coming to an end and obsoletion has set in .if this is not tackled then the firm will be incurring losses on more production. So this is an indication that regal marines have to start looking for another new design to replace the one that in just going out of vogue.

Regal marines’ competitive strategy is right from the customers themselves. Every design and thought that goes into making boats comes from the customers themselves. The customer’s suppliers and designers are all together in the studio of the regal marines while designing a new boat of enhancing features of existing models. This allows for regal marines to feel the pulse of the market and also help in setting in trends and innovations. Since every product is manufactured and customized as per customer design and style this helps regal marines to bring in the right edge to the sale and product and allows it to stay competitive. The brand of Boats from regal marines sells because there is always something new to every boat that is introduced in the market. Regal marine’s product development cell has a good combination of suppliers too. It uses the suppliers input in the design stage by urging them to participate in the design drafting process. This helps in speeding up the initial design process. While competitors lose out on time regal marines is able to capitalize on time. Regal finds that the sooner it brings suppliers on board, the faster it can bring new boats to the market this competitive strategy also allows for competitive pricing with enhanced features. This is the gaining advantage that regal marines have.

The traditional drafting method needs precision and perfection and usually takes some days to design. The prototype of the design cannot be seen unless the drawing is fully complete. This is not so in the case of Cad. if a few necessary dimensions are given and the shape chosen the CAD design engineers can bring out hundreds of designs of the prototype and improving upon the concept as the design proceeds. This is the greatest advantage of CAD designing. Improvements can go along simultaneously. This is not only faster but innovative too. The errors that arise out of human calculations and design lengths can be avoided though computer designing. The parts of the design can be fitted redesigned and reengineered based of specifications and new inputs. This allows for innovations and new concepts. The CAD also gives suggestions for new designs which can be improved upon. Styles and engineering models can be used to stay ahead of others. This is the greatest advantage of The CAD over traditional patterns of design. The CAD allows regal marine engineers to be constantly under pressure to bring in innovations in boat design and models. This also has led to improving the efficiency of Regal marine product service lines.

Project 5
Consider Wal-Mart. Integrate the concepts and operations management principles that you’ve been studying in this module and turn in your one to two page paper addressing the following questions: 1) How product design is applied in decision-making of that organization? 2) Can you describe a Product Life Cycles in the organization? 3) How different Issues for Product Development are applied in the organization? Project 5

Walmart a premier Grocery store and the largest chain store in the USA has been constantly striving to improve its product design. In the design of a consumer product not only is the manufactured cost of interest, but also the quality of the product delivered and how well the product meets customer expectations is studied. Walmart has been able to sustain this competitive advantage by staying ahead of others in designing delivering products in new fashion Walmart product can be distinguished just by design and packaging. Products sold by Walmart have measurable and non measurable attributes too hence both these have to consider while preparing a design plan for its products. Cost is a very important attribute of product design. a key decision making process is the constitution of cost. Walmart has been tagged as the cost price sop or a friendly shop.

Having scored on this advantage Walmart needs to design its product and decide on the most important factor of cost. Many of the decisions regarding cost and quality are made in the preliminary design stage where the design engineers and the cost engineers sit together to make a workable proposition keeping the corporate strategy in mind. Hence these two put together deliver a product that can be afford by a maximum number of people. Since the consumer market is a fast changing one no product design can be kept constant for long. there is great uncertainty regarding this hence this decision of whether to stick to same design or keeping changing the design as per consumer preferences is a decision that has to be taken promptly so that products can have the delivery value. Too much newness and change may also lead to undesirable results sometimes.

Where there is a degree of uncertainty in design performance levels, customer preferences, and even in the goals for the design itself have to change immediately so that the product reaches the shelves with the newness that is anticipated from every Walmart store. The Walmart’s products are fast-moving consumer goods and durables and groceries which have short shelf lives. The product life cycles of products at Walmart are varying from 2 months to 2 years. That is why it is called a FMCG sector. Even before a product has been introduced it become out of fashion and obsolete. Such products life cycle is very short and these products will not be able to bring in that competitive advantage to Walmart. Most of the products that Walmart deals have short PLCs. even before the growth rate starts the decline set in. this call for continuous product improvement and great innovations in product life cycle management. Every product here has a tangible attribute and consumers want that attribute in every new product line. This is a challenge that Walmart has been continually striving for. Walmart’s issues of product development are many and are challenging to the very existence of this chain stores.

The issues are generated not only from managing the wide variety of products but continually striving for error generating highest customer satisfaction. The watchword of product development is innovation. The market place is so crowded that unless Walmart caters to this it cannot sustain in the market. It keeps innovation as the watchword every customer need has to be met and new initiatives have to be optimized to meet the needs of the ever changing consumer market. This is critical to the success of any product development agenda. An ideal marketing mix should be approached by the organization so that product development is optimized. This would help in sustaining the advantage of product development issues.

Project 6
The Arnold Palmer Hospital (APH) in Orlando, Florida, is one of the busiest and most respected hospitals for the medical treatment of children and women in the U.S. Since its opening on golfing legend Arnold Palmer’s birthday September 10, 1989, more than 1.5 million children and women have passed through its doors. It is the fourth busiest labor and delivery hospital in the U.S. and the largest neonatal intensive care unit in the Southeast. And APH ranks fifth out of 5,000 hospitals nationwide in patient satisfaction. “Part of the reason for APH’s success,” says Executive Director Kathy Swanson, “is our continuous improvement process. Our goal is 100% patient satisfaction. But getting there means constantly examining and reexamining everything we do, from patient flow, to cleanliness, to layout space, to colors on the walls, to speed of medication delivery from the pharmacy to a patient.

Continuous improvement is a huge and never-ending task.” One of the tools the hospital uses consistently is the process flowchart. Staffer Diane Bowles, who carries the “Clinical Practice Improvement Consultant,” charts scores of processes. Bowles’s flowcharts help study ways to improve the turnaround of a vacated room (especially important in a hospital that has operated at 130% of capacity for years), speed up the admission process, and deliver warm meals warm. Lately, APH has been examining the flow of maternity patients (and their paperwork) from the moment they enter the hospital until they are discharged, hopefully with their healthy baby a day or two later. The flow of maternity patients follows these steps:

1. Enter APH’s Labor & Delivery check-in desk entrance.

2. If the baby is born en route or if birth is imminent, the mother and baby are taken by elevator and registered and admitted directly at bedside. They are then taken to a Labor & Delivery Triage room on the 8th floor for an exam. If there are no complications, the mother and baby go to step 6.

3. If the baby is not yet born, the front desk asks if the mother is preregistered. (Most do preregister at the 28–30-week pregnancy mark). If she is not, she goes to the registration office on the first floor.

4. The pregnant woman is taken to Labor & Delivery Triage on the 8th floor for assessment. If she is ready to deliver, she is taken to a Labor & Delivery (L&D) room on the 2nd floor until the baby is born. If she is not ready, she goes to step 5.

5. Pregnant women not ready to deliver (i.e., no contractions or false alarm) are either sent home to return on a later date and reenter the system at that time, or if contractions are not yet close enough, they are sent to walk around the hospital grounds (to encourage progress) and then return to
Labor & Delivery Triage at a prescribed time.

6. When the baby is born, if there are no complications, after 2 hours the mother and baby are transferred to a “mother-baby care unit” room on floors 3, 4, or 5 for an average of 40–44 hours.

7. If there are complications with the mother, she goes to an operating room and/or intensive care unit. From there, she goes back to a mother–baby care room upon stabilization — or is discharged at another time if not stabilized. Complications for the baby may result in a stay in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) before transfer to the baby nursery near the mother’s room. If the baby cannot be stabilized for discharge with the mother, the baby is discharged later.

8. Mother and/or baby, when ready, are discharged and taken by wheelchair to the discharge exit for pickup to travel home. Please turn in a paper of one to two pages (page counting does not include cover and reference list) discussing the following questions, 1. As Diane’s new assistant, you need to flowchart this process. Explain how the process might be improved once you have completed the chart.

2. If a mother is scheduled for a Caesarean-section birth (i.e., the baby is removed from the womb surgically), how would this flowchart change?

3. If all mothers were electronically (or manually) preregistered, how would the flowchart change? Redraw the chart to show your changes.

4. Describe in detail a process that the hospital could analyze, besides the ones mentioned in this case.

Project 6
Staffer Diane Bowles is the “Clinical Practice Improvement Consultant,” who charts scores of processes. Her inputs are very important for efficient room processes and admission processes. As Diane’s assistant I would first acquaint myself with the flow of Diana’s flowchart. I would take a few days to study the various inputs and the process flows. Once this is done then I could suggest improvements if any. I feel that there is only place where there is a scope for improvement. This would also help in getting the rooms vacated on time without the prospect of waiting for rooms to be vacated. I would not initiate any changes because the flow chart of processes has been very successful and critical to the 130% capacity of the operational levels of the hospitals’ only would like to improve upon the levels of floors of the various units.

The process as such is maintained very well but the floors on which facilities for labor wards for operations and normal delivery are scattered and in case of any emergency the patient has to be shifted many times up and down. This not only wastes critical time but also man power. I suggest that the seventh and the eight floors be exclusively used as labor wards and operation theaters and the rest of th4 floors be used in any order convenient for doctors’ nurses and other therapists. A mother who is expected to be operated upon needs to jump from process 1 to 7 without any intervening steps. the process 7 would become step 2 as the mother has already registered and ready for the cesarean .then step 6 could be followed the mother and child sent to the ante natal care and then step 8 .in process flow chart for a mother who is to be operated upon. she need not go through any other step as it is not required. Pre-registration should become mandatory fro all expectant mothers.

Then the order of the flowchart would change with step 3 becoming step 1 and step 322 and others following each other. There should be no instant admission process .since all mothers are treated only by this hospital doctors pre-registration must become compulsory. That way the no of patients and mothers to be admitted for delivery on any particular day can be assessed and particularly over crowded seasons can be studied and staff arranged for emergencies. A process for a hospital specializing in obstetrics and child birth could be as follows: 1. Expectant mothers to pre register with the hospital either manually of electronically in the 30th week of pregnancy. 2. The registration number to be produced during time of admission with doctor’s diagnosis. 3,. If the mother is due for a cesarean, admission should take place before 6 hours and the mother should be taken to floor 7 for preoperative care and then proceed to step 6 4.

If the mother is due for normal delivery and the birth of the child can happen any time, the mother and baby are taken by elevator and registered and admitted directly at bedside. They are then taken to a Labor & Delivery Triage room on the 8th floor for an exam. If there are no complications, the mother and baby go to step 6. 5. If the mother has still some more time for delivery she is asked to go around the hospital till the contractions start and then goes to step 6. 6. The mother is taken to the labor ward and after successful child birth she goes to the mother and child ward and then to step 7 7. After observation and mother and child found healthy they are discharged and then to step 9 8. if the mother is found healthy and the child is found not fit enough to be discharged the child is taken to the natal care centre and the mother goes to step 9. 9. The mother and baby discharged with dates vie fro the next check up with post natal care dates.


Project 7
Consider Walmart. Integrate the concepts and operations management principles that you’ve been studying in this module and turn in your one to two page paper addressing the following questions :

1) What process strategy (form the four process strategies) is applied in that organization?

2) Where is the headquarter (or distribution center) of the organization? Are there any benefits locating there? If you could choose, where would you choose?

Project 7
The process strategy is also called the job shop process. The process focus at Walmart is basically strategized around the low volume low variety type. The goods that are sold in Walmart are a large variety of goods with small quantities on the shelf. If one goes through the Walmart shelves it is noticeable that there are hundreds of varieties of goods of all types and brands but one can never buy in bulk just because Walmart does not stock them in bulk. It is not categorized as a bulk store but a retail chain store. The facilities of each department starting from the procurement to delivery are all specific processes and are organized around specific activities. Every activity is done in a specialized way by the department and process concerned. There is heavy centralization of process leading to high execution times and perfection in operations. The procurement department is centralized with a specialists working on processes and jobs. The store stocks goods according to the ever changing demands of the customers so the product range at Walmart is highly flexible.

The stores allows for product flexibility. Since majority of the work of disbursement and product stocking is done manually the store incurs heavy cost on distribution. Except for billing and inventory every other activity is manually done. This leads not only to heavy man power requirement but also lot of human errors that cannot be avoided. This makes way for repetitions and sometimes high levels of inefficiencies. Because of the high manual work the sophisticated machines are seldom used and are all put in cold storage. To show that the store is organized around the latest technology the machines have been ordered and put in place but they are neither used nor automated. This calls for idle cost. Another main characteristic of the Walmart chain stores are the varying product flows making planning and scheduling a challenge. It is very difficult to estimate in advance the flow of a product during a week in advance. this calls for either over stocking a product or non availability of the product hence the floor manager‘s job of stocking the right quantity during the time of demand becomes a challenge. This is the most difficult part of the process flow in Walmart.

The work processes are very unique in the sense that one cannot apply any strategy of operations management and organization behavior here. The assembly process is also a challenge for every department of Walmart. The Walmart chain stores are headquartered at Bentonville, Benton County, Arkansas, 72716. The reason for having the headquarters there is quite obvious because it was here that Sam Walton opened the company’s first discount store in 1962.the original store is now a tourist spot. This small town has not only a big store but all offices of Walmart including the corporate office here. There could be no benefits here except having a sentimental value to having the head office near the original store. Since theses are the corporate offices and do not actually carry out operations of sully chain and procurement it does not matter. This headquarters is management office as all other Walmart stores operate on their own through centralized market pool. Hence procurement and distribution is done through the local stores but decisions regarding corporate policies are excused from the headquarters. I would
choose the same.


dedeksoncenter.net/Classweb/MSIS_301/MSIS301_Slides/OperationsMGT_hr8_ppt07.ppt – http://walmartstores.com/


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