Operations Management

Introducing the Quality Control to Uruguay: Will Japanese Management Be Accepted in Another Culture?

For 18 months, Mr. Kazuo Sakamoto had been in Uruguay under the sponsorship of Japan Aid, the major implementing agency for Japan's international cooperation projects. As an advisor under the technical cooperation program, his objective was to introduce the concept of the Quality Control Circle (QCC) to officials and companies in Uruguay.

Managing a NGO

This is a case about conflicting visions of an organization's purpose. Terakoya Support is a Japanese NGO that supports language courses taught in Myanmar. Advanced undergraduates and introductory grad students in nonprofit management and international development courses will benefit from defining and clarifying the problems and issues in the case. "Managing an NGO" can draw out how differing types of commitment to an organization drive operational issues.

The Overcrowded Clinic

"The Overcrowded Clinic" is an excellent case to introduce graduate students to simple process analysis and process improvement. By analyzing wait times, bottlenecks and other common variables in process analysis, students individually or in groups quickly grasp the possibilities for immediate improvements in service delivery and use of scarce resources.

Maintaining Mission Through Organizational Change: Providence Portland Medical Center

This is an excellent case to illustrate the politics and organizational intricacies of hospital restructuring. Written by a team from the University of California, Berkeley, "Maintaining Mission" describes the efforts of Providence Portland Medical Center (a hospital with a strong religious mission) to control expenses by redesigning its patient care services at the patient care/nursing unit level. Awareness of the need for change was prompted by increasing pressure to cut costs in Oregon's managed care environment.

Rhododendron County Health Department

This case study is about the struggle of a rural county health department to maintain financial and political balance in the face of rapid population increase. This case provides students with valuable lessons in restructuring and downsizing, joint hospital affiliation, decision-making, negotiation, management, and surviving in a managed care climate.

Hospital Consolidation

Set in rural Wyoming, this is a multi-faceted consolidation case, which depicts the efforts of Holy Family Hospital and Gorsich General Hospital to reduce operating costs by combining services. Assisted by a consulting team, hospital administrators must decide the extent of their consolidation efforts. This case provides a glimpse into a highly charged and complex scenario, which shows the conflict between the hospital's potential savings and the ideological/cultural conflicts of the involved parties.

Downsizing at the Dodge Clinic

This is a finely woven case about a hospital's decision to overcome its operating loss by downsizing. The case, which is presented in three parts, forces students to grapple with complex decision-making processes as they follow the divided debate of the hospital's governing board.

Public Managed Care in Easternville: A Case of Opportunities

Experimental programs are gaining popularity among state policy makers as a means to innovate in small, protected steps. This is an excellent managed care case about two experimental projects intended to provide a uniform set of benefits to low-income patients.

Hospital and the Group, The

In the rush to integrate physician practices into PHO-like structure, accountability for physician productivity is frequently ignored. Neither hospital administrators nor physicians are eager to deal with "control" issues such as physician productivity or income, and yet integrated structures must ultimately be accountable for production, income and profitability. The case depicts a new six physician primary care group practice, which runs into problems when a hospital executive at Holy Medical Center is assigned to manage the group.

Snow Removal

Operations management and customer service in a political environment are crucial skills for public and non-profit managers. The Snow Removal case is a classic in public administration for teaching ways to analyze operational circumstances. To many students and instructors, analyzing capacity and demand often seem daunting. But this case, and a companion case on service delivery systems Case Processing of Welfare Assignment Collections allows plain language, low-math skills approaches, which take into account important dimensions of politics and resources.