Different manufacturing processes have different strengths and weaknesses as some are best suited to making small numbers of customized products, while others excel at producing large volumes of standard item. Companies must therefore carefully consider the strengths and weaknesses of different processes and make appropriate decisions as part of their overall business strategy not just in relation to the right equipment but also to include people, facilities and physical layouts as well as information systems (Bozarth and Handfield, p. 55). Consequently, an ideal manufacturing system must be flexible and yet efficient, with low unit production costs.
Based on the above, you are asked to take as an example a product or a service from an industry that you are familiar with (e.g., food, technology, healthcare, retail, services, automotive), and critically:
i. Examine the current process design of that product or service in alliance with the 4 Vs model and illustrate the operational process by using either a Flow Chart or Value Stream Map technique.
ii. Discuss how implementation of Lean Principles and Just -in- Time (JIT) manufacturing may assist in achieving a more flexible and yet efficient process design. Justify your answer by referring to the 5 Performances model.
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