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Abc Steel Company Essay

1729 words - 7 pages


December 10, 2006


Robert Cruz, newly appointed Shop Manager of ABC Steel Company, was making his way through the plant back to his office. He had just reviewed the company’s most recent operating statistics with his boss, Rudyard de los Santos, Operations Manager. The statistics were shocking: ABC Company’s production backlog had reached such proportions that top management decided not to accept any further business. The company was paying penalties of P50, 000.00 a day due to non-fulfillment of contract delivery dates.

ABC Company was one of ...view middle of the document...

Robert had isolated a number of critical problem areas in the fabrication shop. Production control was a constant problem. Schedules were drawn up improperly and they were seldom met. For example, a local construction firm had recently contracted ABC Company to build 2 dump trucks. The contract price agreed upon was P150,000 each, and the trucks were to be delivered in 8 weeks. ABC Company had failed to meet the delivery date. The first dump truck was delivered after 10 week’s time, and the production statistics revealed that “out of pocket” costs for the first truck exceeded P170, 000. The second truck had yet to be delivered, and Robert estimated that fabrication costs for the two would total nearly P400,000. It was discovered that labor and material estimates had been inaccurate. More importantly, Robert listed four reasons why target dates were not met: (1) the targets were unrealistic, (2) shifts in manpower requirements were not anticipated,
1All fabrication activities were carried on in separate sections of the plant called “bays”. Most work orders were started and completed in one bay; less than 20% of the production work flowed from one bay to another.

(3 there were no consistent “follow-up” policies and (4) machine scheduling was so poor that during one week, a huge cutting machine lay idle, while during the next week it had to be run 22 hours a day.2

As shown in Exhibit 1, Rudyard de los Santos was acting Production Control Manager. He and Gabby Alcantara, (Shop Production Control Supervisor), were working on a more effective system of production control. But Robert believed it would be at least six months before any new system would be ready for implementation. As the General Manager admitted, production and control was a “hit and miss” affair.

Another problem Robert Cruz inherited when he took over the fabrication shop was a shortage of skilled manpower. ABC Company had long prided itself on being a producer of top quality steel products. The use of skilled welders, cutters, and steel workers was ABC Company’s only assurance that this quality could be maintained, and in recent years such skilled workers had become scarce.

Finally, Robert had been told that there were serious “discipline” problems in the shop. Workers were often tardy. They fraternized constantly during working hours, and often disregarded the authority of their leadmen and supervisors. Ninety percent of the laborers came from a nearby baranggay, and many were also baranggay leaders tended to be more lax in implementing company policies and taking disciplinary action against the workers. Other baranggay leaders who did not hold positions of responsibility with ABC Company were able to undermine the authority of the leadmen and supervisors in the shop. Two of the five Bay supervisors were described by the workers as “baranggay leaders”; two were described as being “not important” in the baranggay. ...

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