Process Flow Diagrams
Process Flow Diagrams
1. Consider the Custom Molds, Inc. case on pages 125-127 of the text. Prepare a process flow diagram of the Mold Fabrication process and the Parts Manufacturing process, showing how they are linked. We will discuss this flowchart in class on March 29.
2. Founded in 1966, DAV is one of the world’s largest insurance companies with locations in 32 countries. Given the description below, flowchart the New Policy Set-up process as it existed in 1996.
Individual customers who wanted to set-up a new policy would visit one of DAV’s eighty branch offices or make contact with an agent. They would then fill out an application and sometimes attach a check. The branch office then sent the application package through company mail to the VEG division in Hamburg. In addition, a customer might also fill out the application at home and send it directly to a number of DAV locations, which would then transfer it to the Hamburg operation.
Once received, VEG separated the various parts of the application, then scanned it and digitized it. The electronic image was then retrieved from a server and delivered to an associate’s desktop client computer. The associate was responsible for entering the information on the form into the appropriate database. If the information supplied on the application was complete, a confirmation notice was automatically printed and sent to the customer. If the information was incomplete, then another associate, trained to deal with customers on the phone, would call the customer to obtain the additional information.
If the customer noticed something wrong on the confirmation notice she received, she would either call a toll-free number or send in a letter describing the problem. The Customer Problem Resolution division dealt with problems arising at this point. An updated confirmation notice was sent to the customer. If the information was correct, the application transaction was complete.
3. Prepare a process flow diagram of the field service division process at DMI, as described below. Start from the point where a call is received to the point where a technician finishes the job.
DMI was a multi-billion dollar company that manufactured and distributed a wide variety of electronic, photographic, and reprographic equipment used in many engineering and medical system applications. The Field Service Division employed 550 field service technicians who performed maintenance and warranty repairs on the equipment sold by DMI. Customers would call DMI’s National Service Center (NSC), which received about 3,500 calls per day. The NSC staffed about 40 call-takers.
A typical incoming service call was received at the NSC and routed to one of the call-takers who entered information about the machine, caller’s name, type of problem, etc. into DMI’s mainframe computer. In some cases, the call-taker attempted to help the customer fix the problem. However, call-takers were currently only able to avoid about 10% of the incoming emergency maintenance service calls. If the service call could not be avoided, the call-taker usually stated the following script, “Depending upon the availability of our technicians, you should expect to see a technician sometime between now and (now + X).” (“X” was the target response time based on the model number and the zone.) This information was given to the customer because many customers wanted to know when a tech would arrive on site.
Call-takers entered service call information on DMI’s computer system, which then sent the information electronically to the regional dispatch center assigned to that customer location. (DMI had five regional dispatch centers with a total of about 24 dispatchers.) Service call information was printed on a small card at the dispatch center. About every hour, cards were ripped off the printer and given to the dispatcher assigned to that customer location. The dispatcher placed each card on a magnetic board under the name of a tech that the dispatcher believed would be the most likely candidate for the service call – given the location of the machine, the current location of the tech, and the tech’s training profile.
After completing a service call, techs called the dispatcher in the regional dispatch center, cleared the call, and received a new call assigned by the dispatcher. After getting the service call from a dispatcher, a tech called the customer to give an expected time of arrival, drove to the customer site, diagnosed the problem, repaired the machine if parts were available in the van, and then phoned the dispatcher for the next call. Sometimes techs did not have the right parts for a repair. When this happened, the tech informed the NSC and the part was express mailed to the customer; the repair was done the next morning.