Hightone Electronics Case Analysis

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Register to read the introduction… It is found on page 25 and titled, "Hightone Electronics, Inc."
Summary of the Facts of the Case: Hightone Electronics, Inc. (HEI) is an electronic components supply company founded over 50 years ago. The company has a reputation for high quality and service. HEI's simple business of supplying radio repair shops with parts has grown to include home delivery, and larger customers such as technical schools, universities, and well-known corporations. The company stocks and sells over 22,000 different items and most customers receive their order within 48 hours. George Gonzales is the operations director for HEI. He has been tasked with making operations management decisions necessary to make HEI a successful Internet-based business. Mr. Gonzales agrees that this is an important step for the future success of the company but believes there is more to solving the problems of the transition to web-based than the board thinks.
Case Questions:
1. Explain why operations management is critical to the success of a
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A transition to web-based ordering though, would require changes. First, the company would need to upgrade its technology. Either through outsourcing or internal servers, the company would need to create a website. The website would need to be able to handle the customer traffic without crashing. Also, the website would need to be user-friendly so as not to frustrate and turn away potential customer. Customer support personnel would need to be trained to guide customers with questions about the website. Second, and more important than the actual website, is coordinating orders so that requested goods are shipped to the proper customer. Each order transaction will not be entered by a person. Therefore, all of the information gathered by the website will need to be converted to orders easily understood by warehouse …show more content…
Yes. The core functions of the physical locations of the catalog-order business will remain mostly the same as before. They will receive orders, and ship out goods. However, the methods of obtaining orders, customer feedback, return orders, special orders, and many other less notable but still necessary functions will change drastically. If done properly, it will most likely streamline the business, but the initial transition will be difficult.
2. Recall that HEI wishes to continue its reputation of high quality and service. Identify key operations management decisions that need to be considered. * Will we receive more/less orders? * If demand increases, can HEI supply the demand? * If demand decreases, can HEI "weather the storm" until demand rebounds? * What new personnel will be required? * Can current employees be trained? * Do new, more technically-advanced employees need to be

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