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6468 Words Dec 9th, 2013 26 Pages
CASE STUDY: THE BLUE SPIDER PROJECT

“This is impossible! Just totally impossible! Ten months ago I was sitting on top of the world. Upper-level management considered me one of the best, if not the best engineer in the plant. Now look at me! I have bags under my eyes, I haven’t slept soundly in the last six months, and here I am, cleaning out my desk. I’m sure glad they gave me back my old job in engineering. I guess I could have saved myself a lot of grief and aggravation had I not accepted the promotion to project manager.”


History


Gary Anderson had accepted a position with Parks Corporation right out of college. With a PhD in mechanical engineering, Gary was ready to solve the world’s most traumatic problems. At
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With the poor job market for engineers, Gary and his colleagues began taking coursework towards an MBA degree, should the job market deteriorate further.

In 1975, with the upturn in DoD spending, Parks had to change its corporate strategy. Parks had spent the last seven years bidding on the production phase of large programs. But now, with the new evaluation criteria set forth for contract award, those companies winning the R&D and qualification phases had a definite edge on being awarded the production contract. The production contract was where the big profits could be found. In keeping with this new strategy, Parks began to beef up its R&D engineering staff. By 1978, Parks had increased in size to 2,700 employees. The increase was mostly in engineering. Experienced R&D personnel were difficult to find for the salaries that Parks was offering. Parks was, however, able to lure some employees away from the competitors, but relied mostly upon the younger, inexperienced engineers fresh out of college.

With the adoption of this corporate strategy, Parks Corporation administered a new wage and salary program that included job upgrading. Gary was promoted to senior scientist, responsible for all R&D activities performed in the mechanical engineering department. Gary had distinguished himself as an outstanding production engineer during the past several years, and management felt…

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