Apple Inc s Returns Management Practices

Notably, operations are intrinsically associated with supply chain and definition of operations management is incomplete without highlighting supply chain (Stevenson and Hojati, 2007. Heizer, Render and Weiss, 2004).
Supply chain consists of a sequence of several events and organisations that are essential for completing the process of operations management. Supply chain and operations management coexists and comprises activities such as forecasting, inventory purchasing and management, quality checking, scheduling, information management, production, packaging, distribution, delivery and customer service. An important aspect of operations management is production system where input is added in the transforming processes and output is generated. The production system can be classified as mass production, continuous production, batch production and job shop production depending upon the nature and quality of produced goods (Stevenson and Hojati, 2007. Heizer, Render and Weiss, 2004).
The initial production system of Apple Inc was mass production system comprising excessive material handling, poor layout and high degree of functional operations. The system was heavily mismanaged with high overhead cost, excessive inventory, lack of material planning and ineffective inventory system. The mismanagement increased product cost and eventually affected firm’s finances. Since Job’s return, the production system was changed towards betterment by integrating lean production system. Jobs considered outsourcing as one of the important production decisions. Chinese firm Foxconn became its production and assembling partner where simplicity was maintained in layout due to unskilled labours. Apple is focused on efficiency, flexibility, cost and quality and it is reflected in Foxconn’s flexible line production strategy. Short production cycle, repetitive jobs and simple conveyor system at foxconn