A Fighting Chance: New Strategies to Save Jobs and Reduce by Sally Klingel, Ann M. Martin

By Sally Klingel, Ann M. Martin

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Extra info for A Fighting Chance: New Strategies to Save Jobs and Reduce Costs

Sample text

Although the Mexican vendor was within Xerox quality specifications, the members of the executive committee and of the CST agreed that the quality was higher in CMO than in the vendor plant in Mexico. Nonetheless, some management representatives who were familiar with the Mexican vendor argued that its quality could be raised to CMO levels at little cost. The union argued that just-in-time delivery requirements could not be met or quality requirements maintained without a substantial change in costs.

For these reasons, and with a healthy skepticism of management's calculations, the CSTs spent some time challenging the target. Castings, which spent a long time disputing these figures, lost valuable time from its pursuit of cost savings. Teams did discover costs to be missing or incorrect in some of the benchmarks, which only confirmed doubts about the accuracy of the targets. A second problem with the benchmarks occurred because they were based in part on foreign exchange rates, which were fluctuating daily.

Through CSTs, the union has gained more influence over management's operational decisions, specifically by negotiating over the cost-saving proposals of the team. More involvement by hourlies in monitoring internal costs and the costs of vendors has given the union more input into the decision to outsource. Instead of having to react to the news that management has found a lower-priced vendor, the union and management will now evaluate outside and inside costs continually, including quality and delivery considerations, based on data collected over time.

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