Essay by   •  February 17, 2011  •  Case Study  •  1,096 Words (5 Pages)  •  1,556 Views

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We have studied KristenÐ²Ð‚™s Cookie CompanyÐ²Ð‚™s planned production process, and have drawn a number of conclusions based on our analysis. The understanding of our analysis will be facilitated by the following flow chart, which shows each step along the production process. The coloration denotes work performed by each member of the two-person workforce, and capacity and timing are specified below for each step:

From the above chart, we see that when the process is continuing at maximum efficiency, filling one order of a dozen cookies will take 26 minutes.

The oven will be a source of bottlenecking since its portion of the process lasts ten minutes while the preceding and ensuing steps require a total of eight minutes each. Below is a Gantt chart which clarifies this bottlenecking phenomenon. For simplicity, we have combined the removing and cooling step with the packaging step:

If we choose to consider the pure capacity of this production process (neglecting startup and finishing time), we see that, once the production is underway, each batch will add another ten minutes to production time. However, we see that from the moment the first batch goes into the oven (eight minutes after beginning operations), if we use the oven at maximum capacity without pause, and allow for the eight minutes required for cooling, packaging, and completing the transaction after taking the last batch out, we can produce x dozen cookies in y minutes where y=8+10(x)+8 . If we assume that operations run for four hours every evening, then we see that we can produce 22 dozen cookies every night, and that four minutes will remain without productivity. Realistically, at least four minutes will be needed each evening to preheat the oven before operations and to clean the kitchen before closing, but for the purposes of this analysis, we have chosen to neglect this time and consider only the time spent physically producing cookies.

As mentioned above, there are two members of the workforce in question: a first person to prepare the cookies for the oven, and a second to complete the baking, packaging, and the transaction. In order to complete an order of one dozen cookies, the first person will work for eight minutes, and the second will, excluding the time that the oven requires to bake the cookies and the cooling time, work for four minutes. As can be seen from the flow chart above, the electric mixer that will be used to prepare the cookie dough can mix enough dough for three dozen cookies at once. While mixing more dough at the beginning would leave a few free minutes for the first person to complete other tasks such as ordering raw materials, we mentioned above that we are only considering the time necessary to actually produce the cookies. Additionally, the production itself would not be any faster since the bottlenecking occurs at the oven. Because no time can be gained by producing multiple batches, it does not seem worthwhile to offer a discount for such orders. Below is a second Gantt chart describing the production of three dozen cookies when the mixing is done all at once at the beginning of the process.

We consider also the quantity of materials required to operate the production line. One mixer is sufficient since it can be used and cleaned quickly enough to keep up with the oven. Two baking trays are needed to keep up with the oven since one batch will be in the oven while the preceding batch will be scooped onto the tray.

This analysis becomes increasingly precise as we consider nightly demand for 60 dozen cookies where, for any given price p, D(p)=60-6p. Since profits can be defined as P=(p-vc)*D(p),

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