Rio Bravo IV - Case Analysis
Question 1. Are there any justifiable reasons for this response by NUMMI/Toyota people? Or was it just nit-picking?
Yes, there are justifiable reasons. In the Japanese culture, quality is the one of the most important determinates in choosing a supplier. They had specific standards that they developed and applied throughout their entire organization, they expected the same from their supplier (Garbage in - Garbage out premise). They saw promise in Rio Bravo IV's willingness to adapt to these changes and they rose to meet the challenge because they soon realized the benefit of this strong TQM could have in the plant. In fact some concepts spread to Rio Bravo IV's suppliers, such as kanban (JIT?) having just enough products for the order to be shipped that day, thus eliminating works in progress and holding inventory.
Question 2. This practice (restricting the reject holders) is an application of what concept from this chapter?
This is an example of undercapacity planning.
Packard had the exceptional ability of organization through all levels of it's production. Everything had order, a specific place, specific time plan. Packard originally had a large rack to place defective/undesirable products during which a certain period of time would be allotted for reviewing these problems and determining a solution (kaizen). By reducing the size of the rack, fewer defective/undesirable products could be placed on the rack, this forced people to develop solutions as they worked on the product. Also in the back of their head they realized that this left fewer room for error and variation in products. They even applied this process to the drinking water, if water is not in the rack, it is destroyed, there is no room for excess capacity (inventory).
Question 3. In what Rio Bravo IV operations...