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Case from journal
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Reference no. JIACS15-03-08
Authors: Robert Sellani
Published by: Allied Business Academies
Published in: "Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies", 2009

Abstract

The case presents students with a combination of quantitative and qualitative aspects of Inventory Management. The products’ high tech nature and unusual short life cycle should have made inventory management a serious priority in the company. The company lacked any detailed sales plan that could be driven down to specific product configurations for manufacturing to produce. This lead to the Manufacturing organization building what it thought would sell due to the Sale organization’s reluctance to accept Inventory level and mix responsibility. Students should examine the role of the Sales organization in forecasting sales and inventory levels and tie this information to product life cycle. The primary subject matter of this case is Inventory Management in a high tech company with a very short product life cycle due to continual product improvements. Rascal-Mildew Inc went from one of the best managed companies in the UK to a company that ultimately succumbed to competitive forces, lead by severe inventory problems. The case has a difficulty level of undergraduate seniors in Operations Management or Auditing and/or graduate level MBA Operations Management or MACC Cost Accounting and/or Auditing programs. The case is designed to be taught in one class (one hour and fifteen minutes), assuming cases are presented in groups of four students, with a fifteen minute presentation per group and fifteen minutes wrap up by the instructor. Student workload should be expected to be eight hours per group or roughly two hours per group participant at the undergraduate level. Workload should increase to ten to twelve group hours at the graduate level.
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Abstract

The case presents students with a combination of quantitative and qualitative aspects of Inventory Management. The products’ high tech nature and unusual short life cycle should have made inventory management a serious priority in the company. The company lacked any detailed sales plan that could be driven down to specific product configurations for manufacturing to produce. This lead to the Manufacturing organization building what it thought would sell due to the Sale organization’s reluctance to accept Inventory level and mix responsibility. Students should examine the role of the Sales organization in forecasting sales and inventory levels and tie this information to product life cycle. The primary subject matter of this case is Inventory Management in a high tech company with a very short product life cycle due to continual product improvements. Rascal-Mildew Inc went from one of the best managed companies in the UK to a company that ultimately succumbed to competitive forces, lead by severe inventory problems. The case has a difficulty level of undergraduate seniors in Operations Management or Auditing and/or graduate level MBA Operations Management or MACC Cost Accounting and/or Auditing programs. The case is designed to be taught in one class (one hour and fifteen minutes), assuming cases are presented in groups of four students, with a fifteen minute presentation per group and fifteen minutes wrap up by the instructor. Student workload should be expected to be eight hours per group or roughly two hours per group participant at the undergraduate level. Workload should increase to ten to twelve group hours at the graduate level.

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