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Custom Molds Inc

In: Business and Management

Submitted By s3xtr1p
Words 1484
Pages 6
1. Case Background
Founded in 1975, Custom Molds Inc. is the producer and supplier of bespoke molds and plastic connectors to the electronics industry. Building on its reputation, the company expanded in-house operations in the 1980s to include the limited production of plastic parts geared towards R&D based initiatives. During the early 1990s, the company realized that the shifting structure and market environment of the electronics industry was starting to impinge on the company’s manufacturing processes. This created a host of issues.

2. The Issues and Possible Causes
The main issue is that their clients have moved away from the old vertical manufacturing structure (i.e. acquiring the upstream/downstream components of the value chain). Instead, they have been building strategic and cost-effective partnerships directly with parts suppliers and this has completely altered the company’s sales mix (i.e. fewer molds are being ordered and the order sizes for parts have increased). This is inconvenient because Custom Molds’ core competency lies within mold fabrication (i.e. project process). Furthermore, Custom Molds only manufactures high quality parts in limited quantities within a limited scope (i.e. R&D based initiatives). Their production processes are not equipped to accommodate the large order sizes for parts, which is indicative of a batch process structure. Plus, the changing environment has highlighted process inefficiencies within the company which are leading to late deliveries. The probable cause is that the company is trying to meet the increased orders of parts. They are in uncharted territory because their operations are not tailored to cope with this type of sales mix. As a result, they might be finding it difficult to ascertain accurate lead times. Switching the internal operational focus to meet the demand for parts may also be causing...

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