OM in the News: Mexico’s Industrial Hubs and Nearshoring
Jay, Barry and Chuck's OM Blog
by Barry Render
23h ago
An industrial park under construction in Monterrey, Mexico Companies from around the world, writes The Wall Street Journal (Feb, 3. 2023), are moving production and equipment to Mexico as they seek a manufacturing hub closer to the U.S., part of a broader shift in global trade. Some companies are relocating from Asia, while others are investing millions of dollars to raise output of goods that are exported tariff-free to the U.S. (In Table 8.3, we point out that Northern Mexico has become a cluster of electronics firms such as Sony, IBM, HP, Hitachi, and Panasonic). Now, supply-chain disrupt ..read more
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OM in the News: Life Cycle and the Last Boeing 747
Jay, Barry and Chuck's OM Blog
by Barry Render
2d ago
Some legends really are true, writes The New York Times (Feb. 1, 2023), and indeed it is the case that two men on an Alaskan fishing trip in the mid-1960s struck a bargain that wound up starting the era of the jumbo jetliner, which democratized air travel. The first 747 being rolled out of the factory in 1968 “If you build it, I’ll buy it,” said Juan Trippe, the head of Pan American World Airways. “If you buy it, I’ll build it,” countered Bill Allen, the president of the Boeing. Remarkably, barely three years after a handshake agreement, the Boeing 747 rolled out of a giant factory north of ..read more
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OM in the News: The Fast Food Revolution
Jay, Barry and Chuck's OM Blog
by Barry Render
2d ago
McDonald’s has a new Texas restaurant with no tables or seats or bathrooms for customers and a conveyor belt that routes food to drivers who order ahead. Chipotle also offers no place for customers to sit inside an Ohio restaurant that only takes digital orders. Taco Bell is evaluating a new design that features 4 drive-through lanes, double the typical two. Starbucks,  which long described itself as a “third place” for customers to gather after home and work, plans to add 400 U.S. stores with only delivery or pickup service in the next 3 years. Taco Bell is testing a 4-lane drive throug ..read more
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OM in the News: Sprawling Supply Chains and Sustainability
Jay, Barry and Chuck's OM Blog
by Barry Render
1w ago
Companies are rushing to more closely track materials across their sprawling supply chains ahead of expected new human rights and environmental laws, reports The Wall Street Journal (Jan. 24, 2023). Businesses, including consumer-goods company Unilever, clothing retailer H&M, and Renfro (which supplies socks to Ralph Lauren), say they are turning to technologies to help gather data on their supply chains and track materials. Last year, H&M began rolling out a traceability platform for its recycled polyester and man-made cellulosic fibers, such as viscose, that can contribute to d ..read more
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OM in the News: 2022 Was Not a Quality Year for the Airlines
Jay, Barry and Chuck's OM Blog
by Barry Render
2w ago
Chaos. Bedlam. A nightmare. Frustrated fliers spared no superlatives when describing the mess that unfolded in 2022 as travelers returned in full force. Delta had the lowest cancellation rate among major carriers included in WSJ’s rankings. Delta Air Lines’ CEO described 2022 as “the most difficult operational year in our history.” This from the airline that The Wall Street Journal (Jan. 19, 2023) ranked first among nine U.S. carriers in its 15th annual airline scorecard. Alaska Airlines, featured in the Global Company Profile in Chapter 15 of your Heizer/Render/Munson text wa ..read more
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OM in the News: China, Covid-19, and Production Hiccups
Jay, Barry and Chuck's OM Blog
by Barry Render
2w ago
For nearly three years, one of the most dreaded possibilities among China-based manufacturers was if workers contracted COVID-19, reports Supply Chain Dive (Jan, 13, 2023). Under the country’s stringent zero-COVID policy, even a few positive cases in or around a factory could shut down an entire operation for days. Employees prepare crayfish products along an assembly line at a plant in Hubei, China. Many factories there are facing new strains as swaths of workers are out sick with COVID But in the last several weeks, the script has flipped. The Chinese government began lifting its zero-COVI ..read more
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OM in the News: 3-D Printing and the Future of Global Manufacturing
Jay, Barry and Chuck's OM Blog
by Barry Render
3w ago
Now that much of the hype around 3-D printing has died down—no more of that 2010s-era talk about a Star Trek-style replicator in every home—a funny thing is happening to this technology. It’s becoming a widely used, and in some respects quietly revolutionary, update to the way that people manufacture and process things we rely on every day—from cars to industrial machinery to food. “What’s more, the way this technology is being used could have implications for the shape of global supply chains to come,” writes The Wall Street Journal (Jan. 14-15, 2023). A quick refresher from Ch ..read more
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Guest Post: Location– Facility Repurposing Failures
Jay, Barry and Chuck's OM Blog
by Barry Render
3w ago
Prof. Howard Weiss is providing Guest Posts will I am travelling. Figure 8.1 of your Heizer/Render/Munson textbook lists 6 factors affecting the decision about what site to select at a local level. Another factor at the site level is whether or not it is possible to take over an already existing site. In two previous blogs I have discussed successful repurposing of facilities in general and repurposing of closed Kmart buildings. Unfortunately, not all repurposing decisions turn out well. One case below shows the problems to the organization taking over the facility while the second demonstrate ..read more
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Guest Post: Supply Chains and Transportation Options
Jay, Barry and Chuck's OM Blog
by Barry Render
3w ago
Prof. Howard Weiss is providing Guest Posts while I am travelling abroad. There have been many articles detailing the supply chain problems at the California coast. In particular, this blog has an article detailing the ship backup at ports and an article detailing the recent unclogging at those ports. There are three main methods for manufacturers to acquire capacity for shipping their goods. They can contract out for space from a shipping company; they can charter an entire vessel; or they can own their own container ships. Several large companies have recently changed from booking space with ..read more
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Guest Post: Product/Service Lifecycle– Landlines, Operators and Cellphones
Jay, Barry and Chuck's OM Blog
by Barry Render
1M ago
Prof. Howard Weiss is providing Guest Posts while I am travelling abroad. Recently Bloomberg reported that AT&T will end its operator service in 21 states, meaning that 3 million customers with digital landlines can’t dial 0 and get directory assistance. At the conclusion of World War I, there were roughly 180,000 operators employed by telecommunication companies. The number peaked to 350,000 in the 1950s but is now down to 550. The decline in the need for operators is due to two obvious factors:. 1) There has been a steep increase in the number of households that have replaced landlines w ..read more
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