Professor C. Lennon
Orion, a division of a large aerospace company with 7000 employees (Larson and Gray, 2011), evolved from a project organization structure for the matrix structure with prime objectives of utilizing limited resources effectively and reducing cost (Larson and Gray, 2011).
Usually Orion would undertake three to five large projects and also work on thirty to fifty small projects (Larson and Gray, 2011).
It was required that they eliminate higher production costs, low quality, customer dissatisfaction, and lack of strong project ownership to successfully complete the new high profile project code named Jaguar (Larson and Gray, 2011).
Mike Rosas was assigned to be the project manager of Jaguar project which was the important project of ORIAN that had just been awarded by the government to build the next generation of high-speed, light-rail trains (Larson and Gray, 2011).
Rosas realized that the increased competition always come with the higher performance expectations regarding completion time, quality, and reliability and cost. In addition, organizing and managing projects in Orion structure would be a key to achieve the expectation of Jaguar project. Due to cost utilization and the limitation of resources, the organization was developed to matrix structure (Larson and Gray, 2011).
There were four persons who had responsibilities for different tasks on the completion of the project. However, project management was limited only to the design and development (Larson and Gray, 2011).
A series of related jobs that are focused toward a major solution is a project. Projects take time, money, people, and other resources to perform successfully. Project management usually controls these resources as well as planning the project and allocating resources where needed. Before a project is started, management decides which organizational structure will be used to run the project. There ...
In addition, the development and manufacturing period of a project such as Jaguar would take around 6-7 years to complete. There were many points which were identified as problems such as quality concerns, customer support, and scope creep (Larson and Gray, 2011).
Of these concerns, Rosas was aware and tried to figure out with his staff the best way for new Jaguar project. Followed are a few recommendations I would make to Rosas about organizing the Jaguar project (Larson and Gray, 2011).
First off, very little design for manufacturability was done, and the production ramp was complicated, inefficient, and stressful (Larson and Gray, 2011).
It also created higher than expected production costs. Rosas should include manufacturing, quality, and logistical support in the project management structure the design phase. Project management is limited to the design and development of new products; manufacturing and quality issues would be dealt with after the fact. The failure to factor in manufacturing, quality and logistical support during the design phase is a major weakness of the present structure. Finding a way to better integrate design and development with manufacturing, quality and customer support would be helpful. Secondly, Rosas should use a dedicated project team to improve the integration and project efficiency. It would be an excellent alternative and may even have a great impact on the entire organization. After all Orion began as a project organization but turned to a matrix structure because it did not have enough resources to accommodate project demands. While everyone accepted that a matrix arrangement was the only way to accommodate all of Orion’s projects, the shifting back and forth of personnel across multiple projects took its toll on the progress of individual projects (Larson and Gray, 2011).
1. Establish the project objective, and make a list of your assumptions about the project. Project objectives The project aims to transform the previous annual report done by the research center into a more eye-catching, organized report that can used to effectively promote the ‘not-for-profit’ nature of the center and enable past & potential donors to realize the contribution made by the ...
The shuffling of personnel slowed down progress because additional time had to be devoted to bringing new members up to speed on current developments (Larson and Gray, 2011).
In addition to better project integration, another major concern is the time it takes to develop and deliver new products. I would recommend that Rosas consider applying concurrent engineering to the problem which would help shorten the project’s duration to avoid costly delays and design modifications which were inconsistent with customer requirements.
To reflect these changes and apply my recommendations Rosas would have to allow changes to be made to the organizational chart and the master plan. I would first redraw the master plan to engage in manufacturing and logistical support in parallel to design which would shorten the project’s lead time and also reformulate the composition of the top project management team to better cross-functional integration such as the quality assurance manager, to implement a quality program that will enhance the reliability, availability, and maintainability of the product, and the integrated logistical support manager to ensure all activities that require project/customer support after delivery (Larson and Gray, 2011).
Project manager is a vital role in persuading the project activity and have higher authority.
Other major changes between the way Orion has managed projects in the past would also have to change and would include: 1)Enhance cross-functional integration (especially between design and manufacturing) 2)Accelerate project completion time 3)Project management now covering the entire design, manufacturing, and delivery process, with Production, ILS, and QA managers as part of the top project management team 4)Expand responsibilities of the team leaders, responsible for developing and testing of specific subsystems (including subsystem quality and manufacturability, budget, cost and quality).
Team leaders will act as project managers for their specific system (deliverable) of the project.
These changes will show improvements and eliminate the problems identified earlier by Orion. First, production costs should be reduced because manufacturing issues will be incorporated in the design and development process (Larson and Gray, 2011).
... under the responsibility of one project manager. The project manager will mediate between the client, FAA, and the design team. The design team will be split up into ... this time the project manager will also evaluate the documentation and complete it before commencing the next phase. 4. 3 Project Support Functions Quality assurance ...
Then quality should be improved since it will be factored directly into the design of new products. Customer support should definitely be improved because they will be more actively involved in the design and development phase. Evaluation should enhance their commitment as well as provide them with a head start in preparing documentation and designing training programs. Then Orion can enhance project ownership by insisting that at least half of the personnel work full time on the project while having a core group working full time on the project should improve team cohesion and productivity. Lastly, scope creep should be reduced because team leaders are more accountable for budget and schedule (Larson and Gray, 2011).
Likewise, the active involvement of professionals from manufacturing, support, and QA should help the design engineers to pay attention to practical considerations.
Erik W. Larson and Clifford F. Gray (2011) Project Management: The Managerial Process 5th ed.