Q.1. Discuss Bill Jones and his approach to automation compared others?
Operations management as applied by by Bill Jones approaches to automation helped increase production and boost the employees morale and therefore credited his approach to be emulated. He demonstrated the best principle of management based on the ability to bring workers, managers and machines together to increase production at Cambria steelton industry. He was an experienced caring leader who was promoted from his reputation of building the furnaces at Chattaniooga in Tennessee. He was of strong character which helped him to blend corporate goals with those of his workers therefore generating accomplishment one after the other.
Besides, he believed that the steel industry required strategic constant sequential upgrading and motivated men to work for eight hours only as opposed to the standard 12 hours which he considered as brutal and counter productive to the industry. This was however in contrast with most of the other leaders who insisted on full exploitation of the 12 hours automation system of the steel company (Gerald, 1981). His operation management style superimposed on him being a community man earned him the heart of many which acted as motivation to them.
The employees identified with him so much that they were refereed to as Jones boys. He was occasionally seen eating peanuts and smoking cigars on the street of Braddock. He insisted for the 12 hours working duration due to his love and generosity that made him contribute freely to the society. Besides he was human enough in that by considering the working hours to be eight, the workers would be involved with other constructive ways for their lives like sports which was very helpful to the industry though indirectly. He relied on promotions from within the company as the employees having served under him had the relevant experience to run different sections (Gerald, 1981).
He encouraged innovations and improvements to increase production from the company. He initiated the use of the use of the larger mixers which allowed for continuous flow of the liquid pig iron. Also, he innovated the use of steel bolts in rail housing that raised the strength of the iron products made in the company. As a result, this ensured continuous production and processing of steel in the company during and after his management period.
Bill Jones operation management based on the belief of careful selection of the men he employed, assisted him assisted him to increase production as he worked with innovation oriented people only in the company. He combined the operation of the machines with the high motivation of the employees to increase the production. He reiterated that the aim of the firm was to keep the company running steadily. Therefore he encountered less resistance from the employees in terms of employments claims and overworking which increased the company production (Gerald, 1981).
Due to his management approaches and link to his combined automation mode, other leaders differed with him. Carnegie tried to pressurize Bill Jones to adopt the 12 hours system and reduce the use of machines which Jones dismissed as abuse for humanity. This mode however had led to the demonstrations on overworking and less pay due yo reduced production from the system. As Jones dislike the use of labor unions for championing the employees rights, Carnegie opted to negotiate with them and had great successes in his production mode.
Morel lust like Jones, believed in combination of machines and experienced people to be able to increase the production of the company. He had a loving attitude towards the employees and encouraged ethics in the work p;lace where the employees did not have to work for the whole long eight hours for the employees to be motivated. He also encouraged the gradual introduction of the machines to the company for improvement. Morrell developed and molded John Fritz on the basis of Engineering and automation which later earned him the name “dean of steel makers” (Gerald, 1981).
Discuss why inventory control is key to lean?
Inventory control is important to lean as it acts as the gauge and the main determinant of the progression of an individuals business. This method calls employment of the main principles of scientific management and better employee benefits to achieve high customer satisfaction for the company. It is the main tool for success in business having been adopted by large successful companies like Ford manufacturing and Toyota. Inventory control and lean practices entails careful consideration of the customers requirements and desire as the key element for the success of the business. Inventory therefore as Heinz indicates, is the measure of the efficiency after the quality demands of the customer have been met. The employees must understand the operation system of the lean philosophy for better application (Gerald, 1981).
Heinz adds that in in this mode, the company must choose the market in which he will supply his goods for success to be achieved. The inventory must be tied to and envisioned in dollars to increase the production and reduce the overhead costs. Then the managers salaries should be related to the wasted inventory dollars for the lean manufacture to succeed. Big companies managers may loose the feel of inventory but smaller businesses keep their inventories carefully and refer to them as dollars and therefore progress faster as they manage leanly their manufacturing system.
The inventory process therefore tells you the level of efficiency you are operating on and therefore assist you in making different immediate decisions that are meant to help your business to grow if it had bottle necks. To add to that, these inventories help the managers identify the problems well in advance therefore being adequately equipped for to tackle them. Heinz indicates that “hedge inventories are built because of poor performance”. “Decision making on questionable products had to be made quickly” (Gerald, 1981).
The supply of the raw materials into the company for making the products is part of the company business activities. Lean requires ample supply of raw materials in the production line and consequent market determination to enhance the exit of the products at the desired prices. Physical inventory therefore assists to address the problem of the supplies in the company by prior prediction of the trends. Heinz insists that, “you can never run lean without a good supply chain of your company”
In addition, inventory ensures that dynamism in the customer requirements are easy to deal with thus changing of products can be done quickly without losing the market. It ensures that the employees are flexible in their operations through proper planning. Mr. Heinz had used no tooling but had to change to different food products quickly through ample planning and flexibility of the employees.
For successful lean to be realized adequate supply of labor must be available in the production and supply unit. Temporary and part time laborers should be engaged as they increase the flexibility of the company in times of the production swings as different times of the year. Therefore location on places with inadequate supply like major towns would help greatly increase the efficiency of the lean. Heinz employed large numbers of women on temporary and part time basis to heighten the production differences at various periods. Inventory control therefore under the vision for high quality helps in implementing the lean philosophy.
Compare the approach of Charles Schwab at Bethelem Steel to Edison on innovation?
Charles Schwab differed with Edison on the operation management in the steel company for improvement thorough innovation (Gerald, 1981). Though both of their approaches were aimed at increasing production their diversity resulted to the varying production levels. Charles believed that men are driven by competition while the business is driven by cooperation and therefore ensured that customer suppler cooperative network was maintained. Through this approach Charles was able to marvel may as to the method he used to get access to the vast dynamic market. Even the internal relationship of the employees revolved on the employee friend ship who were the key pillars to supply in the company (Gerald, 1981).
Edison on the other hand believed on the market driven forces to gain the market through the forces of demand and supply. He equally succeeded but his levels were lower than those of Charles. Charles notes that the production was driven through commitment and understanding between the employees and the management.
They both believed that labor and management must go hand in hand for the consistency of the employment to be maintained. Though this was rather visionary, it was achieved with greater satisfaction to the employees who were guaranteed their wages and salaries in the production line and thus improved their morale for more production. Charles insisted that manual rewards should be based on the profitability of the production system. This also improves the quality of products as well as the welfare of the employees. Edison on the other hand insisted on use of Bonuses and Employees rewards which also raised the morale of the employees in the company. Though both methods improved the rate of production from the employees, the later system may be hard to establish and is open to biasness (Gerald, 1981).
Charles just like Edison invested strongly in the employees and believed that the managers must play a paternal role by protecting and developing the employees. They believed that the employees were the key to increased production of the factory and thus their welfare must be taken seriously. Their safety, health, and living conditions must go hand in hand with the current trends and the state of the company. Charles used safety and pension schemes innovation for the employees to concentrate in their work (Gerald, 1981). The paternal approach was respectful of the workers and therefore was no considered to be like the welfare where the integrity was taken aback (Gerald, 1981).
To add to that, they both believed in application of technology and investment as the first application of profits in the company. The technology would reduce greatly the cost of production through innovation at the different sections of production. This would in return increase the profit margin for the company. High levels of innovations and integration of management, machines and the employees, must be carefully balanced to increase the production levels of a company. As indicated above, the employees in any production management unit form the most important asset that should carefully handled to raise the production levels at all times.
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