Category Archives: Manufacturing

Tesla–A different mix of employees compared to other car companies.

Elon Musk, the savvy CEO of Tesla Motor, has recently posted on Twitter his need for “hard-core software engineers” to work at his company.  His electric-car company is looking to add thousands of employees in coming years.  The company is … Continue reading

Posted in Cost, Labor Productivity, Manufacturing, Outsourcing | Leave a comment

New approach to making product on-demand.

Discussion Questions: This article describes a new system for making items using flexible single-worker cells.  What are the advantages and disadvantages of the system compared to using an assembly line? What if you were a company facing the need to … Continue reading

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Navy Awards Two Shipbuilding Contracts for New Submarines

Discussion Questions: Read the following article carefully.  What are the details of the contracts that that the Navy struck with General Dynamics and Huntington Ingalls? Would not it have been better if the Navy had only awarded one contract?  What … Continue reading

Posted in Cost, learning curve, Manufacturing, Purchasing, Supply Chain Risk, Supply Chain Strategy | Leave a comment

Toyota Consolidating Operations in Texas

Discussion Questions: Carefully read the following article.  What Toyota positions are being moved to Texas?  Why is Toyota making this change? What are the incentives that Texas is offering Toyota?  How significant are these to Toyota’s decision? What are the … Continue reading

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Smartphones–Modular vs Integrated Design

Discussion Questions: The following two articles are related to smartphone design.  The first article describes Google’s idea for a modular design where the user can customize the phone to their exact requirements. The second article is about the cost to … Continue reading

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Factoryless Goods Producers–Should They Be Categorized As Manufacturers?

Discussion Questions: Read the article carefully.  What’s the difference between a manufacturing and service company? Well, what do you think?  Should a company that designs a product, potentially buys the materials, and sells the product, but does not actually make … Continue reading

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Manufacturing Plants in Europe Generate Own Electricity

Discussion Questions: The following article describes what may be a growing trend where companies are becoming self-sufficient in energy needs.  What are the advantages and disadvantages of doing this? It may be that the cost advantages are dependent on government … Continue reading

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