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1. How would you describe Boeing's approach to project management?

What are its basic elements? Its strengths and weaknesses?


Boeing project Management approach was methodical and detailed processoriented

as

they

outsourced

major

production

components,

handled

the

partnerships on the risk-sharing model and paid special attention to the overall
process, whether it is market Assessment, Configuration, Cost estimation supplier or
Production management. Boeing approach to build flexible design aircrafts with
inherent growth potential provided advantage to fulfill diverse customer needs.
Basic elements in Boeing strategy included leveraging its competent areas in global
marketing, technological leadership customer support and production skills.
Strengths:

Market strategy to have flexible plane designs with scalable potential.

Dedication to commitments and meeting deadlines

Focus on teamwork and inter functional cooperation

Use of several PM tools : Master Phasing Plan , Parameter estimating


techniques

Regular communication even it convey bad messages.

Weakness:

For implementing Boeing New Airplane program, Boeing took 3 years of time
to identify the good and bad practices which I believe is some wastage of
resources and time. They could have invested some time in identifying the
practices and could have started working simultaneously on the project
implementation.

Production of only eight 767's per month means high-risk factor stretching
the break-even revenue point long into the future.

2. What is your assessment of the company's parametric estimation


techniques?

Estimates

were fine-tuned

to

account

for difference

in plane

programs: Paying close attention to fine tuning means that Boeing managers
clearly understood the requirements and end results from different airline
programs.

Analyzing data from Benchmarking Program, 727:

Many tasks would

remain same for different airline programs, so taking benchmarking from


earlier projects helps to plan design modifications and vendor negotiation
strategy optimally.

Effective use of Computer Aided technologies to manage Change


orders Boeing contains 3.1 million parts, so keeping track of change orders
can be very challenging task, Deploying Computers system provided a
systematic approach to manage and track orders. The stored data can also be
further used to understand which Change orders occurs regularly and can be
improved upon.

Considering historical program data for predicting future estimates was a


robust and effective technique as learning curve accurately estimates the
number of labor hours to build planes in future.

3. How does Boeing manage risk? (Please consider financial, market,


technology and production risk).

Line Flow Process to manage and schedule several work stations.

Change Control: Tracking of internal and external changes monitored closely


by Managers to maintain timely schedule and filing formal procedure to finalize
even the basic design.

Worked closely with 1300 suppliers from initial planning to final delivery to
ensure product quality: for instance, Boeing Engineering Management helped
to select Italian and Japanese Engineers to work on 767 program.

Cost-Risk Planning : Authorization of new planes only after order of 100


planes is received

Audit teams were deployed to carefully review the programs: Only


experienced Boeing Managers were put on the team to review every significant
element of the 7X7 program.

Meticulous review of all Existing projects to identify relevancy.

Analyze historical data to understand design characteristics, such as speed,


length relationships

Detailed laboratory tests were conducted to check strength of Composite


Materials

4. Which method should Boeing use to convert the cockpits? Why?


Changes should be made on off-line production in retrofitting separate
Cockpit area

It would prevent disruption of Learning Curves and schedules. For instance,


first 767 had 12,000 changes while the seventieth will have 500 changes with
fewer people needed for the activity.

Problems can be handled in a dedicated Cockpit area. Problems could be


identified and corrected on the spot rather than disguised by multiple assembly
lines

Detailed level of Technical and functional testing can be done in less time
with better accuracy

Cost & Time effective : Operating retrofit as separate project will provide
better control over tasks and would optimize efficiency in terms of costs and
time