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published: 15 Dec 2017

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Abstract:
Agility is often mentioned but seldom defined or clearly illustrated. This case discusses UNICEF’s response to the sudden disruption of its aid supply chain to Yemen after the bombing started in 2015. It illustrates how a forwarding hub was quickly established in Djibouti and dhow vessels were used to reach small Yemeni ports from there. The case analyzes the supply chain, the organizational and strategic aspects of agility and discusses how UNICEF can further develop its strategic agility as an organizational capability. It can be used in supply chain and strategy classes, as well as classes on change management and fast decision making processes in organizations.
Part A outlines the events leading up to the Yemen Crisis and presents the challenges faced by UNICEF. Part B then describes UNICEF’s response to the crisis. Part B is restricted to instructors but can be distributed to students as well. The same goes for the supplementary teaching note, which gives an analysis of the response with regard to strategic agility. Please visit the dedicated case website to access supplementary material.

Pedagogical Objectives:
Agility is required in dynamic environments but poorly understood. This case tries to explain how an organization has built multiple elements of agility in its supply chain and organization over the years and has been able to deploy them fully in a recent crisis. It explains what the basic building blocks of agility are and how an organization can develop an overall strategic capability by combining these components into a strong competitive advantage. The setting is a crisis in humanitarian aid due to a conflict and the organization is UNICEF.

Keywords:
Humanitarian Logistics, Emergency Aid, Strategic Agility, Supply Chain Management, Change Management, Sudden Change, Humanitarian Organization, Agility, Humanitarian Relief, Disaster Relief, Strategic Sensitivity, Collective Commitment, Resource Fluidity

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published: 15 Dec 2017

  • Topic: Operations
  • Industry: Humanitarian Logistics
  • Region: Middle-East

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Abstract:
Agility is often mentioned but seldom defined or clearly illustrated. This case discusses UNICEF’s response to the sudden disruption of its aid supply chain to Yemen after the bombing started in 2015. It illustrates how a forwarding hub was quickly established in Djibouti and dhow vessels were used to reach small Yemeni ports from there. The case analyzes the supply chain, the organizational and strategic aspects of agility and discusses how UNICEF can further develop its strategic agility as an organizational capability. It can be used in supply chain and strategy classes, as well as classes on change management and fast decision making processes in organizations.
Part A outlines the events leading up to the Yemen Crisis and presents the challenges faced by UNICEF. Part B then describes UNICEF’s response to the crisis. Part B is restricted to instructors but can be distributed to students as well. The same goes for the supplementary teaching note, which gives an analysis of the response with regard to strategic agility. Please visit the dedicated case website to access supplementary material.

Pedagogical Objectives:
Agility is required in dynamic environments but poorly understood. This case tries to explain how an organization has built multiple elements of agility in its supply chain and organization over the years and has been able to deploy them fully in a recent crisis. It explains what the basic building blocks of agility are and how an organization can develop an overall strategic capability by combining these components into a strong competitive advantage. The setting is a crisis in humanitarian aid due to a conflict and the organization is UNICEF.

Keywords:
Humanitarian Logistics, Emergency Aid, Strategic Agility, Supply Chain Management, Change Management, Sudden Change, Humanitarian Organization, Agility, Humanitarian Relief, Disaster Relief, Strategic Sensitivity, Collective Commitment, Resource Fluidity

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published: 31 Aug 2017

  • Topic: Operations
  • Industry: Computer industry, Retail
  • Region: North America

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Abstract:
On 15 May 2001, the first Apple retail store was opened to the public at Tysons Corner, Virginia, and the same day a second store was opened in Glendale, California. With retail branded experiences virtually unknown in the industry at the time, the decision to launch the Apple retail programme was greeted with scepticism. However, within the first week they welcomed 7,700 visitors, with sales of almost $600,000 – testimony to its undoubtable success – and went on to roll out another 24 stores.
Fifteen years on, there are over 450 Apple stores globally, with higher sales per square foot – $5009 – than any other retail location in the United States. Even today, people still wonder what made them so successful and how it can be replicated.
Having successfully designed a brand-defining experience for Apple retail that created immense value, Eight Inc. had to decide how this level of success could be replicated for other potential clients. The case describes the relationship between Apple and Eight Inc., who were initially hired by Apple co-founder Steve Jobs to work on first the MacWorld tradeshows. It traces the steps in the process, from establishing the case to each minute detail in the design process. The case describes how the team built not just a store but a breakthrough branded customer experience.

Pedagogical Objectives:
1. To introduce and analyse a framework to design branded experiences. The case shows how designing a (retail) branded experience is different from designing a space or designing a service, and supersedes the latter. It also shows the business value that can be created through branded experiences.
2. The role of brand values in guiding the design principles for all the elements that contribute to the user experience. Understanding what those brand values are and how they are perceived by the target user is crucial in the design process.
3. A branded experience is the engagement of the user with the brand through the products/services, communication messages, the staff (and other users) behaviours, and the physical (and digital) space. The management of the experience design process requires an approach that combines modular and integrative principles. While the design of products/services, communication, behaviours and space are typically done separately by different disciplines, the integration of all these elements must be considered throughout the process so that they combine to create a holistic experience.
The design of the Apple retail stores was not just an example of a good experience design, it was a breakthrough in the computer, technology and retail space. This provides a rich context to discuss the key success factors behind creating an outstanding branded user experience. One was the level of deep and detailed involvement of top-level management throughout the process, critical in defining the brand values that guided the rest of the design process and enabling the team to push the boundaries.

Keywords:
Innovation, Design, Retail, Experience Design, Computing Industry, Organizational Transformation

published: 28 Aug 2017

  • Topic: Operations
  • Industry: Public sector
  • Region: Asia

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Abstract:
The Ministry of Manpower in Singapore is designing a new employment pass processing centre. Working with a lean-thinking approach and using previous centers as a template, the project team proceeds to plan an updated version with faster processing times and improved interiors. Unexpectedly, plans grind to a halt as the civil servant in their line of reporting raises some crucial queries that call into question the very basis of the new centre’s lean and optimal design. Time is of the essence and the project head is now faced with two very tough options: proceed with minor incremental changes that may not meet expectations, or go for a complete redraft which requires time and capabilities that the team may not possess. Which will be his choice? The case stops here to allow a class discussion to evaluate the two options on how to proceed. This provides an ideal setting to discuss how to manage a new-to-the-firm design-thinking project.

Pedagogical Objectives:
After reading and analysing the case, students will be able to: • Evaluate the pros and cons of lean thinking vs. creative thinking methodologies. • Apply the steps and processes of creative thinking. • Examine the importance of excellence in user experience via the customer’s journey through the system. • Apply their understanding to consider the factors required to bring about transformation through design thinking in their own organizations. • Consider the need for excellence in public sector services, as in those for the private sector.

Keywords:
Innovation, Design Thinking, Public Sector, Organizational Transformation

published: 26 Jun 2017

  • Topic: Operations
  • Industry: Aviation
  • Region: Global

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Abstract:
The case presents a new business model in the jet engine industry - performance based contracting for jet engine maintenance. It explains the trade-offs, challenges and guidelines for successful implementation of these contracts, including direct and supply chain effects.

Pedagogical Objectives:
To illustrate a new business model, and highlight different contracting schemes.

Keywords:
New Business Models, Performance-Based Contracting, Risk-Driven Business Model, Contracting, Supply Chain Management, Aviation, Rolls-Royce, Maintenance, Incentives

published: 29 Mar 2017

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Abstract:
The case shows how concepts from operations management can be applied to a service setting (as opposed to manufacturing). With private equity as the setting, it aims to help students understand how to use systematic process and queuing analysis to design a professional service operation.
Please visit the dedicated case website to access supplementary material.

Pedagogical Objectives:
1. Systematic process analysis 2. The role of uncertainty in creating non-value-added time 3. The trade-off between efficiency and ability to attenuate the ill-effects of uncertainty by creating slack—(hence high utilization may sometimes lead to suboptimal outcomes). 4. Systematic sensitivity analysis for strategic planning.

Keywords:
Management of Professional Services, Queuing Analysis, Service Operations, Private Equity, Process Analysis, Workflow Analysis, Staffing

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published: 29 Mar 2017

  • Topic: Operations
  • Industry: Private Equity, Consulting
  • Region: Asia

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Abstract:
The case shows how concepts from operations management can be applied to a service setting (as opposed to manufacturing). With private equity as the setting, it aims to help students understand how to use systematic process and queuing analysis to design a professional service operation.

Pedagogical Objectives:
1. Systematic process analysis 2. The role of uncertainty in creating non-value-added time 3. The trade-off between efficiency and ability to attenuate the ill-effects of uncertainty by creating slack—(hence high utilization may sometimes lead to suboptimal outcomes). 4. Systematic sensitivity analysis for strategic planning.

Keywords:
Management of Professional Services, Queuing Analysis, Service Operations, Private Equity, Process Analysis, Workflow Analysis, Staffing

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published: 29 Mar 2017

  • Topic: Operations
  • Industry: Private Equity, Consulting
  • Region: Asia

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Abstract:
The case shows how concepts from operations management can be applied to a service setting (as opposed to manufacturing). With private equity as the setting, it aims to help students understand how to use systematic process and queuing analysis to design a professional service operation.

Pedagogical Objectives:
1. Systematic process analysis 2. The role of uncertainty in creating non-value-added time 3. The trade-off between efficiency and ability to attenuate the ill-effects of uncertainty by creating slack—(hence high utilization may sometimes lead to suboptimal outcomes). 4. Systematic sensitivity analysis for strategic planning.

Keywords:
Management of Professional Services, Queuing Analysis, Service Operations, Private Equity, Process Analysis, Workflow Analysis, Staffing

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published: 30 Jan 2017

  • Topic: Operations
  • Region: Global

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Abstract:
Decentralized supply chains - with a greater number of hubs and depot locations – are designed to be more responsive to disasters around the globe by getting primary relief items such as food, water and medicines to beneficiaries quickly. This case explores the centralized vs. decentralized tradeoff for the secondary support supply chain of an international humanitarian organization (IHO). Using data from a real organization (unnamed), it asks whether supply chains for secondary support items should be the same as those for primary relief goods, and how earmarked funds impact the supply chain configuration. It presents information on donations, secondary support demand and response in mega disasters, and optimized data and simulation results. These allow for extensive data analytics, interpretation, and Excel modeling skills to be utilized, as well as students’ intuition.

Pedagogical Objectives:
1. Understanding the trade-offs between centralized and decentralized humanitarian supply chains; 2. The impact of earmarked funding on humanitarian supply chains and decision making; 3. Differences between humanitarian and commercial supply chains; 4. Variations in humanitarian demand: the supply chain for food and water may differ from that of 4WD support vehicles and building supplies.

Keywords:
Humanitarian Logistics, Global Supply Chain, Global Facility Location, Global Supply Chain Network Configuration, Temporary Hubs, Earmarked Funding

published: 29 Aug 2016

  • Topic: Operations
  • Industry: Pharmaceutical Industry

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Abstract:
This case illustrates different growth strategies in the pharmaceutical industry. R&D management is a critical component of growth strategies, and the case demonstrates the importance of using a holistic framework for R&D when expanding the firm's business footprint. The case serves the purpose of comparing organic and inorganic growth strategies, and identifying the steps that are critical for the execution of these strategies.

Pedagogical Objectives:
The case can be used in either a 90-minute MBA class discussion or a 4-hour executive class discussion on the topics of Supply Chain Management, R&D Management, or Strategic Management. The key issue is the linkage between the strategy of growth and the execution skills needed to implement the strategy. The case discusses business model innovation at length, and compares different processes needed to innovate successfully

Keywords:
R&d Management, Supply Chain Management, Growth Management, Mergers and Acquisitions, Healthcare Industry

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