Ford vs. GM: The Evolution of Mass Production (B) Harvard Case Solution & Analysis

This case explores the very different routes taken by the Ford Motor Company and the General Motors Corporation in the first three decades of the twentieth century. After significant experimentation, a mass production system that transformed the vast majority of jobs in the factory into regular tasks was perfected by Ford Motor. It pioneered the moving assembly line; also measures that became mechanized and integrated were pursued by it. While it single-mindedly focused on cost minimization leading to a spectacular market success for time, the resulting inflexibility made it difficult for the business to react to market changes.This created a chance for others and General Motors, particularly in the face of technological shifts to closed-metal stamping technology and body designs, in addition to the advertising-led thought of the annual model change. The case provides exploration versus exploitation a setting to analyze several frameworks, the emergence of dominant designs, and vertical integration versus transaction costs and supplier holdup. The (A) case closes with the question of what GM should do about provider Fisher Body.

PUBLICATION DATE: August 15, 2013 PRODUCT #: 614011-HCB-ENG

This is just an excerpt. This case is about TECHNOLOGY & OPERATIONS

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