Process Improvement

Process Improvement

Write a report that explores an existing process in need of improvement at Toyota at the time of the 2010 accelerator crisis. This process will be at the center of your operations improvement plan (OIP). This assessment should build on the work you did in Assessment 1, looking more closely at key details.

Your report should outline your process improvement idea and include the following elements:

  • Problem statement: What exactly needs to be improved? Use problem framing and cause-and-effect analysis to develop a brief, preliminary problem statement. Note: You will expand your problem statement in Assessment 3.
  • Background of the issue: Detail relevant historical data, including how long the problem has been occurring and what it is costing the organization. Note: You are not expected to provide specific data results at this early stage of your investigation.
  • Impact: What could happen if the problem continues as it is? What could happen if the process is improved? Outline both tangible and intangible pros and cons for improving the issue or ignoring it. Identify some potential general business results and impacts on business relationships.
  • Desired outcome: How will your new process be different from the old? What competitive advantages will it yield? How will it impact stakeholders? Consider the cost-benefits of the process improvement, estimating how much will it cost the organization and outlining how costs will be offset by the benefits derived.

The work you do for this assessment will inform your work in future assessments. You will also draw on it for the final, comprehensive OIP that you will submit in Assessment 6.

Additional Requirements

  • Length of assessment: 3–5 typed, double-spaced pages.
  • APA formatting: Format resources and citations according to APA style and formatting.
  • Font and font size: Times New Roman, 12 point.


Toyota Specific Resources

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Additional Resources for Further Exploration

You may use the following optional resources to further explore the Questions to Consider and assessment topics.

Operations Management

The following resources offer a foundational broad view of operations management.

You may want to search this blog for the following terms: automotive recalls, operations improvement, and strategic planning.

Case Studies

The following case studies are recommended for further examination of the topics addressed in this assessment.

You may wish to purchase this resource from Thunderbird School of Global Management.

  • Greto, M., Schotter, A., & Teagarden, M. (2010). Toyota: The accelerator crisis [Case No. A09-10-0011]. Glendale, AZ: Thunderbird School of Global Management.

You may wish to purchase this resource from Harvard Business School Publishing.

  • Gray, A. E., & Leonard, J. (2009). Process fundamentals [Case No. 969-023]. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Publishing.

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