OPS330T Strategic Operations and Logistics Week 5 Apply

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Submission #1:

Submission Score:110 / 110 (100.00%)
Grade Time:May 29 at 19:10
Submitted On:May 29 at 19:10
  1. PlastiPharm employs several modes of transportation for delivery of its products to its customers. In the past, it relied solely on shipping by truck. However, in recent years, customers have demanded more input into the delivery modes. Why should PlastiPharm allow its customers to have any say in how their products are delivered? Or should they not allow it? Please select the best explanation.
    • Allowing a customer to become involved in transportation decisions, which are highly complex, is not a good idea and should not be allowed.
    • Choosing different modes of delivery should be left to the company as it best understands what the customer needs are based on customer contracts.
    • Allowing customers to choose a delivery mode based on factors that are most important to them – speed, reliability, cost, environmental impact – will better meet their needs.
    • The company should allow customers to select the delivery mode they desire because they might have an arrangement with a certain carrier.
    FEEDBACK6 / 6  (100.0%)
  2. Five years ago, PlastiPharm implemented a supply chain visibility system, which allows the company and its customers to see where product and parts are at any given time. It took time, however, to train employees to use the bar code scanners every time product was in transit. It also took time for PlastiPharm’s suppliers and carriers to buy into the technology, but the system has now been successfully implemented and is fully operational. Which statement best explains a major benefit of visibility technology?
    • Managing information is common now for all companies and having visibility technology indicates to customers that the company is progressive.
    • Indicating where products and parts are located at any given time allows the company to better manage the labor force that handles the items.
    • Supply chain visibility technology allows for quick change to take place and for demand to redirect supply to where it is needed most.
    • The company found that advertising it has a supply chain visibility system is the best way to attract new customers.
    FEEDBACK6 / 6  (100.0%)
  3. PlastiPharm hired a new production supervisor for its day shift. He pushed relentlessly to fulfill customers’ orders early, thinking that early was always better. However, several customers started complaining about the timing of the deliveries. Why would some customers not value early deliveries? Please select the best explanation.
    • Some companies found that early deliveries usually were delivered to the wrong location, which created problems for their production flow.
    • Early delivery requires customers to adjust their labor to accommodate the movement of products.
    • Some businesses operate on a just-in-time basis, so it is critical that suppliers hit delivery slots exactly when requested.
    • Early delivery is usually beneficial to customers even though it might be initially inconvenient; it’s much better to be early than late.
    FEEDBACK6 / 6  (100.0%)
  4. PlastiPharm’s logistics system has been improved over time to become extremely efficient. Movement of supplies and product has been mapped to reduce waste of motion. Packaging and shipping have been improved to take advantage of full truckloads and backhauls. Which of the following statements best explains how these efficiencies benefit the company, its customers, and the economy in general?
    • Improving logistics allows employees more time to interact more with each other and increase their connections within the company.
    • The improvements in the logistics system has increased the opportunity for the company to develop better partnerships with its suppliers and customers.
    • The efficiencies realized in the company’s logistics has allowed senior management to make better decisions about other systems to improve.
    • Improving logistics systems has reduced logistics costs, which has reduced the cost of living and increased the standard of living in many countries.
    FEEDBACK6 / 6  (100.0%)
  5. At PlastiPharm, customer expectations have changed drastically over the years as new technology and new tools have been developed to increase efficiency and reduce costs. Not all costs have been reduced, however, and the company must carefully monitor inventory, transportation, and packaging costs in addition to its production and administrative costs. What is one of the biggest challenges the company faces to meet customer needs as well as manage its own costs? Please select the best explanation.
    • The company needs to identify and evaluate tradeoffs in other costs and balance them all in order meet customer needs at the right cost.
    • The company must always determine how best to deliver shipments to its customers as quickly as possible.
    • The company needs to continually assess its financial obligations in order to charge the highest price it can for its products and meet those obligations.
    • The company should always work to determine how best to forecast demand in order to meet its customers needs and increase customer satisfaction.
    FEEDBACK5 / 5  (100.0%)
  6. The shipping department at PlastiPharm was asked to increase its efficiency in loading finished products and unloading incoming supplies. The department analyzed its movements and realized that employees spent only 42 percent actively engaged in value-added work. The rest of time was spent waiting – waiting for trucks, waiting for paperwork, waiting for product to show up at the dock. The department worked with several other departments to redesign existing processes and workflows to ensure the continuous movement of product to the shipping department so its employees were more actively engaged. Why is it important for the shipping department to devise ways to reduce the time its employees wait? Please choose the best explanation.
    • Reducing the time spent waiting helped the shipping department identify other projects its employees could work on.
    • Devising ways to reduce wait time allowed the shipping department to identify all the processes in which it was involved.
    • Eliminating waste is an important part of the company’s lean journey, and identifying ways to reduce wasted time is a high priority for senior management.
    • By reducing wasted time, the shipping department helped improve the flow of products to customers and increased customer satisfaction.
    FEEDBACK5 / 5  (100.0%)
  7. When PlastiPharm began its lean journey, the company’s focus was on cutting back costs by increasing efficiency and reducing waste. In its drive for efficiency, it significantly reduced the number of employees in its logistics departments. The company found, however, that many employees complained about being overworked because there just weren’t enough people to do all the work that needed to be done. As one employee said, “Being lean doesn’t mean that you don’t invest in resources, including human resources.” The company eventually hired a few more people and found that its employees were more engaged, more adaptable, and more able to focus on quality work instead of trying to do as little as possible as quickly as possible in order to say projects were completed. Choose the statement that best explains how the company can benefit from a lean, but not too lean, human resources approach.
    • Allowing employees time to breathe enables them to have more energy, less stress, and time to interact with their coworkers.
    • Employing an adequate staff gives the company time to design and improve employee engagement activities.
    • Having enough employees and ensuring employees are engaged and adaptable allows the company to be resilient and respond quickly in case of a crisis.
    • Having an adequate labor pool allows the company to give its employees time to complete important projects.
    FEEDBACK5 / 5  (100.0%)
  8. When PlastiPharm reviewed its contracts for product delivery, it was interested in developing a long-term relationship with a trucking company that was reliable and could deliver product to all areas in the contiguous United States. While these traits were definitely important to the company, what other factors should it consider and why? Please select the statement that would best benefit the company.
    • Looking at the way a trucking company respects and appreciates its drivers can tell the company a lot about what it really values and if those values match their own.
    • When looking at additional factors for consideration, the company should review the carbon footprint of each potential partner in order to adopt a more sustainable transportation mode.
    • To maximize profits, the company should also consider the speed of delivery as well the ability of a company to respond quickly to change.
    • The company should also consider how long a company has been in business and their reputation so customers will be more comfortable using their services.
    FEEDBACK6 / 6  (100.0%)
  9. The cost of delivering a truckload of product 500 miles to a neighboring state typically costs PlastiPharm around $4,000. When the company asked for a bid to move a load 30 miles, the trucking company replied with a $700 bid. Why weren’t the costs per mile similar? Please select the best explanation.
    • Short trips are not able to take advantage of the fuel efficiency generated when a truck is driven at 65 miles per hour. Thus, the company needs to charge more to cover costs.
    • A short trip does not mean that less work is done or that cargo takes less space, so the trucking company needs to ensure costs cover its capital investments.
    • A minimum standard fee for pick-up and delivery, regardless of the distance of the delivery, increases the cost of local deliveries.
    • The cost of local deliveries is higher because short trips still require quite a bit of effort on the part of the trucking company.
    FEEDBACK6 / 6  (100.0%)
  10. The transportation manager at PlastiPharm encountered problems when she discovered the trucking company they used most often provided inaccurate bills of lading (B/L) on several shipments. Why was it important for the manager to obtain accurate B/L?
    • A bill of lading is a legal document that states the contract terms and also acts as a receipt, which enables the manager to appropriately account for expenditures.
    • The transportation manager felt responsible for the errors and did not want to lose her job because of the mistakes the trucking company made.
    • An inaccurate bill of lading exposes the transportation manager to potential criminal prosecution should something go wrong with the shipment.
    • Not managing the shipping process correctly increases the risks the company takes for delivery to its customers.
    FEEDBACK6 / 6  (100.0%)
  11. At PlastiPharm, delivery of products to the right customer at the right time is of paramount importance. The transportation manager must stay on top of when shipments are received by customers, not just when they leave the company’s shipping dock. In certain parts of the United States, the transportation manager schedules delivery, if possible, in the early hours of the morning or late at night. Why would the transportation manager want to schedule deliveries at these times? Please choose the best explanation.
    • Because truck drivers like to drive at night, the transportation manager can schedule night deliveries to accommodate their preferences.
    • Delivery during these times allows the trucking company to avoid congestion and reduces the chances of late deliveries.
    • Delivering in the early morning or late at night allows a truck driver to find parking more easily and reduce costs associated with parking.
    • Because trucking is very competitive, the transportation manager must meet their requirements and schedules in order to be viewed as a good partner.
    FEEDBACK6 / 6  (100.0%)
  12. Because of inaccurate billing issues, the trucking carrier most often used by PlastiPharm is no longer acceptable to the company. The transportation manager had several options, which was good, but she needed a tool to analyze the different carriers using a systematic method that considered the most important criteria. She chose the multi-criteria analysis tool to help her with her task. What benefits does this tool provide?
    • Selecting the multi-criteria analysis tool enables the transportation manager to determine alternative factors that might influence her transportation decisions.
    • The multi-criteria analysis tool provides the ability to quantify subjective criteria and brings discipline and visibility to the process.
    • The multi-criteria analysis tool gives the transportation manager the ability to look at the strengths and weaknesses of each carrier.
    • Choosing the multi-criteria analysis tool provides the transportation manager the ability to focus on the most important criteria for the company’s most important clients.
    FEEDBACK5 / 5  (100.0%)
  13. The senior management team at PlastiPharm is exploring the possibility of adding one or more distribution centers on the east coast of the United States to improve customer service to different regions. During the analysis, the company reviewed more than just transportation costs but additionally looked at costs of inventory carrying, warehouse, order processing, and poor customer service. Which of the following statements best explains why the company would take into account all of these factors?
    • Taking into account all the factors meant that the company was continually looking for ways to minimize separate costs for each department.
    • Considering all factors enabled the company to determine if customer service in different regions of the country would increase.
    • The company needed to make sure it coordinated its decision with key decision makers to ensure they were all engaged and supportive.
    • By looking at all the costs, the company could optimize its entire logistics system and determine the total cost impact.
    FEEDBACK5 / 5  (100.0%)
  14. When discussing the adoption of a transportation management system (TMS) to link with PlastiPharm’s ERP system, the company looked at all aspects of its logistics network for ways to improve. How might a TMS help the company to continuously improve? Please choose the response that best benefits the company.
    • Utilizing a TMS would enable the company to reduce its carbon footprint in all its transportation decisions.
    • The TMS can help improve collaboration with the company’s transportation partners, better manage capacity, and reduce costs.
    • A TMS can help the company garner new customers because it can advertise that it has a system whereby a customer can see new delivery capabilities.
    • A TMS can improve the company’s ability to increase the customer service focus of the transportation department.
    FEEDBACK5 / 5  (100.0%)
  15. PlastiPharm’s warehouse is a hive of activity at certain times of the day. Often, three or four fork lifts operators crisscross paths to place or retrieve components or products high on shelves. Unfortunately, during a very busy time several heavy boxes fell when a forklift operator tried to place a pallet close to them. Fortunately, no one was hurt. However, the warehouse manager insisted that all warehouse employees attend a refresher course on safety. In the absence of an injury, why would the manager take the time to review safety procedures during such a busy time? Please choose the statement which best benefits the company and its employees.
    • Keeping employees safe is the company’s number one priority, and the refresher course will help remind the employees of their responsibility to always be safety conscious.
    • The safety sessions will provide a reminder for the fork lift operators on how to store items properly to prevent any future shifting or falling materials.
    • A refresher safety course can help put the company back on track to maintaining its compliance with OSHA safety requirements.
    • The manager should take time to remind the employees of safety procedures to ensure the company is not held liable for any accidents that might occur.
    FEEDBACK6 / 6  (100.0%)
  16. The warehouse manager at PlastiPharm was faced with a labor shortage when two employees, who lived about 30 miles from town, could not get to work because of an unexpected storm. Demands on the warehouse were high, and the manager needed to quickly decide how to get materials delivered to the production team utilizing the staff he had. He talked to the production supervisor and asked if the supervisor could share a line worker who’d previously worked in the warehouse, and then he himself operated a fork lift (being certified to do so) in order to maintain the flow of parts to the line. With such a focus nowadays on technology, what did the manager do that a warehouse management system (WMS) could not? Choose the statement that best answers the question.
    • The warehouse manager was able to demonstrate his management skills.
    • The warehouse manager was able to talk with the production supervisor.
    • The warehouse manager created efficiency in a difficult situation.
    • The warehouse manager immediately decide how best to address and solve the problem.
    FEEDBACK6 / 6  (100.0%)
  17. A recent upswing in demand for PlastiPharm’s medical device bags affected the company’s warehouse’s ability to store film, the key component needed for each of its products. A safety stock of film was required by several customers, and there was not enough room to keep the stock in the current warehouse. Therefore, the company conducted a total cost analysis to determine if it would be best to build another warehouse, add on to the existing warehouse, or lease space in a public warehouse that was located within five miles of the production facility. Which of the following criteria is of most importance in the analysis of the need for warehouse space?
    • Carefully considering warehouse needs for layout design is the first and most important criterion for the company to consider.
    • The most important factor for determining warehouse need is the tradeoff between fixed and variable costs.
    • Analyzing product volume the warehouse will handle over time is the most important criterion to consider.
    • The ability to automate a warehouse system and improve efficiency is the most important factor to consider in this situation.
    FEEDBACK5 / 5  (100.0%)
  18. The demand for PlastiPharm’s medical device bags has greatly increased on the east cost of the United States, and the company is considering adding a warehouse in the region. Why would the company, whose plants are in the Intermountain West, California, and Texas, consider adding a warehouse so far from its production sites? How will this best benefit the company?
    • A warehouse on the east coast will allow the company to take advantage of lower labor and land costs.
    • Establishing a warehouse on the east coast will help the company reduce the problem of traffic congestion because of its closer proximity to customers.
    • Locating a warehouse in the right location on the east coast near customers will reduce distance and improve service levels to customers.
    • Having a warehouse on the east coast will enable the company to store additional safety stock in case of emergency.
    FEEDBACK5 / 5  (100.0%)
  19. Twice a year, in July and December, PlastiPharm shuts down its production line for a week. During this time, all facilities are thoroughly cleaned and repaired. This is a busy time for the entire warehouse crew as they go through the facility and identify/tag anything that is out of place, unused, or deemed unsafe in its current location. This step, sorting, is part of the company’s 5S process, and all warehouse employees are involved. Once the clutter is removed, the team moves on to the remaining 5S steps: set in order, shine, standardize, and sustain. Which of the following statement best describes the biggest challenge the team faces in this process?
    • Getting started is the largest challenge faced by any 5S system, and this is true for PlastiPharm’s warehouse as well.
    • The team’s biggest challenge is customizing the 5S system to the warehouse and tailoring it to fit the company’s needs.
    • Involving managers and supervisors is the biggest challenge the company will face, for without them the system will not be sustainable.
    • The biggest challenge is for employees to develop the discipline needed to sustain a clutter-free work environment.
    FEEDBACK5 / 5  (100.0%)
  20. PlastiPharm’s warehouse manager works hard to keep his team in the loop on the company’s strategies and challenges and invites their input early in project planning. The company has implemented both a paper-based and digital suggestion box to gather improvement ideas from employees and rewards them for ideas that are executed. The warehouse team is especially active in the suggestion program because the manager encourages and immediately recognizes those who participate. Why is it important for the manager to put so much emphasis on gathering input from his team members?
    • Implementing employee suggestions always improve working conditions and operations.
    • When employees make improvement suggestions they are more interactive with others.
    • Listening to employee suggestions gives employees confidence to try for higher-paying jobs.
    • Employees who are actually doing the work are often the best people to improve operations.
    FEEDBACK5 / 5  (100.0%)