Operations Management Introduction A major factor to consider with regard to managing a café is enhancing efficiency. Efficiency is important not only because it reduces costs, but also because it leads to happy customers as they can get the right product at the right time (Wilson & Blunt, 2013). In a case such as Meowski’s Café, it is absolutely necessary to be able to give the customers freshly prepared drinks and freshly baked cakes and biscuits. This should be done without delaying the service. Managing this kind of a situation will need a well orchestrated plan to make sure that the customers can have the product as soon as they want it, but without having to be given stale products (Kumar, 2008).
To manage this, the following will be important with regard to the value chain operations of the café; Downstream activities This will involve two major things Connecting the customers with the right pet Some customers may want to ask for a specific cat (pet), or a specific breed of cat. In this case, to enhance the way such a customer experiences the services offered by the café, it will be necessary to make this possible for the customer (Foss & Stone, 2001).
Technology will definitely play an important role to make this a reality. Additionally, it could create better customer relationships (Rajola, 2003). Meowski’s Café will provide the customers with an app which they can use to preorder a pet and say exactly which pets they are hoping to spend time with. When they use the app to send his information to the café’s database, the staff at the Meowskis can then make the pet available to the customer at request.
Supply chain analysis diagram for Meowski’s Café Offering the customer the best beverages and snacks such as coffee, biscuits, cakes, etc Meowski’s Café will be seeking to offer the customers with the best baked products. This will mean that the café will need to source high quality raw material from the right suppliers who will be able to provide these when needed. Use of information technology Meowski’s Café understands the need to involve IT in their operations to enhance service and product delivery.
Meowski’s Café will use an application that is installable in a Smartphone. Meowski’s Café will give the customers the application that they will install in their phones. If a customer wants to preorder some products such as a cup of coffee, they will do it through the app and the app will use the internet to update the database at the case. Using this information, the staff at the Meowski’s Café will anticipate this order and prepare it just in time. According to Richards (2011), this is one way to have a lean business environment where products and services are prepared only when needed by the customer.
Using the app, the customer will be able to order the pet that he or she wants to spend time with in the Meowski’s Café when she comes to the café. For instance, if a customer has just left office in the evening and intends to spend some time in the Meowski’s Café, he or she will consider how long it will take to reach the café and then order her beverages and specify the time he will be arriving at the café.
This will provide enough information for the staff at the café to make sure that everything is done in a lean way. Lean in this case refers to producing products and services only when there is a ready order rather than mass producing and storing the products while waiting for the customer to order (Ohno, 2008). This system of production was introduced by Taiichi Ohno in Toyota Inc. as a way to reduce costs and wastes in the manufacturing of automobiles. It has become very popular for all types of business which want to increase efficiency it service and product delivery (Sudit, 1996). Upstream functions The upstream functions will include three distinct areas which are important for the Meowski’s Café.
This will include raw materials associated with the pet food, the raw materials used for the human foods, and the pets themselves. The lean strategy used for the delivery of service in the Meowski’s Café will also need continued evaluation for efficiency. As Wireman (2005) says, this is necessary to ensure that there are no lapses as time goes on.
Flow chart indicating the process of ordering materials and preparing customer’s orders Raw material for food Because most of the items will be needed in the bulk, it will be possible to order from one large supplier. The advantage of ordering from a big supplier is the guarantee of a continued supply. The same Smartphone app will be seen by the suppliers to manage the inventory. The database can be shared with the suppliers so that the suppliers can have real time data on the supplier needs.
This will need another app for the supplier which will be updated from the database. Once the database received customer’s orders, it will automatically update the suppliers with whatever is needed and the suppliers will supply enough raw materials to serve the orders of a specific day. Because the Meowski’s Café will be using a lean approach in delivering its services, it will mean that the raw materials will only be purchased on demand rather than buying in bulk for mass production. All raw materials will be bought just to meet the production of one day.
This will have the advantage of avoiding cost of holding materials, the cost of inventory management, and the cost of inventory damaged during storage (Ndubisi & Kuei, 2005). Conversely, there are potential disadvantages. For instance, if the suppliers are not reliable, that may create a gap in the supply and this will mean that the café may not be able to serve these customers well. Lean manufacturing is a way to reduce wastage and reduce efficiencies that are caused by mass productions (Ohno, 1988).
Suppliers of cats The Meowski’s Café will require constant supply of pets (cats) which will be course from reputable breeders and rescuers. There are a number of reputable rescuers and breeders around Brighton and this will provide a good supply of these cats to the Meowski’s Café, the rescuers are able to rescue lonely cats that don’t have owners and clean and train them. The cats they can supply the café are high quality and friendly and will be good for the customers. Reference list Foss, B. & S Stone, M.
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