Each and every firm is engaged in business because it has services, products and in some cases a combination of a product and service which it offers to its clients as a solution to a particular want or need that they have. This therefore means that objective of each and every business entity is to get these services and products readily available to clients through the company's operations. It can therefore be ascertained that every single deed which is directly linked with the manufacturing of services or products from the initial stage of raw materials to the transformational processing level of planning and decision making, equipment, human resource activity and facilities coupled with the available technology to the finished product is what is known as operations. Operations management therefore refers to the process of conversion which transforms inputs like raw materials and labour into useful outputs or finished products. Operations management therefore ensures that everything is done rightly each and every step of the process (Doerr, 2009).
The two selected for research are Kudler Fine Foods and the Toyota Companies. Kudler Fine Foods deals with services while the Toyota Company deals with Manufacturing. The main guideline for this research is to compare and contrast their operation management and marketing and identify their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Kudler is an upscale profitable gourmet store that has locations in California, Del Mar and La Jolla. Its mission is to provide its clients with the finest in selected wines, foodstuffs and other related needs that are available in the unparalleled environment of the consumer. Clients who visit the Kudler Stores normally demand fresh organic foods and specialty. Kudler Foods must therefore offer excellent quality products to keep its customers satisfied and ensure product availability (Epstein, 2007).
Kudler Fine Foods, founded by Kathy Kudler who is the owner is well aware of the need to present or give an increased product line because the clients have been increasingly demanding organic products. Research done by the Associated Press had also indicated that there was a growth in Sales of Organic Foods from 15% to 21 % each year as compared with the two percent to 4% for total sales attributed to food. Cathy therefore has a chance to increase retail sales and operational efficiency in its three branches by changing its supply chain that is charged with the responsibility of contracting with organic produce local growers (Fine, 2009).
The effect of change in the Supply Chain will as a result force Kudler Foods to examine the possible opportunities and risks and therefore be in good position to initiate changes to its operations in order to satisfy its customers through provision of quality products. By possessing the right performance measurement standards and quality control tools, the Company is capable of moving forward so as to develop supplier relations, improve its operations, expand the customer base and the business in general to maximize its profits, offer new products and satisfy its loyal customers. To ensure that it retains its competitiveness, Kudler Foods needs to understand how the processes and processes work have to match with the needs of the company (Gale, 2010).
For Toyota Company, operations management is a vital business area which deals with production and manufacture for the company. The post sales service and production are two important aspects which measures the efficiency of the Toyota Company's business operations which in turn monitors how its resources are utilized so as to meet the expectations of the clients. The operation management is therefore concerned with governing the resource utilization of the Toyota Company's profits through management of efficient use of scarce resources and managing in order to produce the goods that are able to satisfy the customers' needs and wants (Hartline, et al, 2008).
The main factor that therefore differentiates services from products is tangibility. Even though the service and manufacturing industries have different operations, the world is now moving towards more and more service based industries in which operations management approaches, theories and other methodologies that are used in the manufacturing industry are able to be applied in the service industry. Some principles of operations management between the Toyota Motor Company and Kudler soft foods should be clearly be looked into (Paley, 2005).
When it comes to processes and activities, there are big differences between a manufacturing based organization and a service based environment. For instance, when it comes to the production line of a factory like lets say Toyota Motor Company where most activities involve dealing with materials transformation, many processes are involved. Among the processes involved include components where each bit of any item that is needed in making a car is normally supplied by over four thousand suppliers and are then transported to the plant which is relevant. Sequentially, during the manufacture of the chassis, the frame, that forms the base of a vehicle is normally moved on a conveyor so that the car is equipped with the gas tank, axle and shaft among other things (Render, 2010).
Strengths for Kudler Fine Foods
The strength of this company is that it has a strong backing from the other branches and as such, its customers are able to pick their products from any of the branches. The company is also highly customer centric and therefore it properly utilizes effective customer relationship management skills so as to win over it current and future clients. Its mission statement is also aimed at provision of quality services for its customers (Richter, et al, 2009).
Weaknesses for Kudler Fine Foods
The weaknesses of Kudler Fine Foods is that it has not adapted the modern ways of doing business like for instance development of the electronic point of sale terminals (EPOS) at its outlets and as such, many customers are kept waiting at the tills to pay for their products. Another weakness is that the company has never conducted a market research to see what its competitors are offering their customers and therefore, the company cannot be able to strategize effectively. The company does not also motivate its employees to even work harder to satisfy its clients (Simpson, et al, 2011).
Opportunities for Kudler Fine Foods
Kudler Fine Foods is continuing to offer more and more food products for its clients. The company is also considering opening up some other branches in various states to increase its profitability. Kudler Fine Foods is also looking for new methods of retaining and attracting more customers to purchase its products.
Threats for Kudler Fine Foods
The company is facing stiff completion from other new entrants in the field of foods and as such, it will need to work extra harder in order to deal with the competition. The landscape within the market is also not all that conducive for Kudler Fine Foods. The company also lacks the required funds to enable it to expand to greater geographical locations.
S.W.O.T Analysis for Toyota Motor Company
The Toyota Motor Company has been known for its fast and inexpensive manufacture of cars. The company is well known with its brand name and it is the world's third largest car manufacturer. The name Toyota has some prestige as compared to some other vehicles to the higher end in the market and it is also known for manufacturing the best selling car known as Camry and for manufacturing other strong brands like Scion and Lexus. Its strongest strength is that it has a well known name and it has a trusted reputation since most American people are familiar with the products of the company and therefore feel safe. The company's ability to put out new models year in year out has enabled it to remain at the top of the modern trends through incorporation of safety devices and new popular features (Turner, 2010).
The threats of the company include the fact that it can't be possible to totally avoid competition and therefore the company could only continue to put its new modern models of cars at a low cost. And by making sure that their cars surpass or adhere to the current safety standards, project their image as much as possible and avoiding negative publicity, the company is able to continually enjoy reaping the benefits arising from its respectable name. Honestly, many consumers are discouraged by the reality that gasoline prices have in recent years more than doubled. The company should also aim at discussing the availability of vehicles which appeal to different demographics arising from its competing manufacturers (Epstein, 2007).
Its weaknesses include not utilizing the hybrid technology and the increasing gas prices. The company is also unable to manufacture more stylish models of vehicles which are affordable and appealing to the younger buyers. The company is also experiencing classier vehicle varieties which come from different manufacturers. The opportunities of the Toyota Motor Company are that it is a strong competitor in the industry of automobiles and therefore it is capable of using its much of its strength to maintain its position and overcome its weaknesses. It should therefore avoid the negative impacts that arise from its threats and take advantage of the opportunities (Epstein, 2007).