Operations Management - Supply Chain Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

One of these strategies relies on
integrating services into manufacturers' products. In order to be
successful at implementing such a strategy, certain factors must be taken
into consideration.
The most important factors that must be taken into consideration by
manufacturers in the service integration process are probably availability
and customization. Basically, availability is represented by time and
location. For example, through service integration, the delivery activity
has been modified. Many companies provide a 24/7 service for their
customers in order to gain competitive advantage. Other modifications
regarding availability include the combination of automated Internet
services and telephone access for certain domains of activity where this
possible and useful.
Customization refers to flexibility and directing it externally
towards the customer, and not directing it internally on the production
process. Basically, customization focuses on modifying the standard product
so that the new, modified product suits better with individual requirements
that customers have. Therefore, the production process must be flexible
enough to allow the accommodation of several individual customer
Although integrating services into manufacturers' products requires
financial investments and time, one must take into consideration the
positive aspects brought by the process, like: improved product
performance, customer training, and expanded product capabilities.
4. Given the new service innovations' dual framework, involving the
end product, on the one hand, and the service delivery method, new services
can be categorized as window dressing, breadth of offerings, revolutionary,
and channel development.
Window dressing services refer to services that do not differ very
much from other products of the company. Also, these new services are
delivered in almost the same manner. Such window dressing services are
represented by new items on restaurant menus, new routes or destinations
for airlines, or new courses at colleges and universities. Given the fact
that such new products are similar to other products offered by the
company, their impact cannot be an important one. However, the advantage is
that such new products can be brought to market quite quickly.
Breadth of offering services category includes services with a visible
design change, but with similar delivery process. For example, a company
that owns a hotel or a restaurant starts with one location, but than
expands to a greater number of locations, each new location having
particular traits that the other locations do not have. Therefore, the
design is different for each product variant, but delivery is the same.
Revolutionary services are more complex. They incorporate very new
content, on the one hand, and very new delivery method, on the other hand.
They have certain disadvantages, as revolutionary products take longer to
bring to market, and they also require important investments.
Channel development services refer to services that are no different
to the company's current services, but are provided through a new channel.
Such new services include automated teller machines, or products sold
through the Internet, and not only in traditional shops. Service quality is
one of the factors that must be taken into consideration by the company
when delivering its…

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