DYNACORP ANALYSIS 10
Themain systemic factor that is hindering DynaCorporationfrom attaining maximum performance is the political aspect, of theFront/Back structure, the organization adopted recently. The companyadopted the design because consultants claimed that it was the mostefficient structure that InformationTechnology and Communication(ITC) companies are using to achieve maximum performance. The designadvocates that the marketing team would serve as a distinct front-enddivision in charge of selling all the Dynacorp Systems and products.Nonetheless, the marketing team would be knowledgeable on thefunctioning of the products such that they would offer supportservices to the customers. Similarly, the marketing division wouldalso learn the requirements of the present needs of the customers andthen communicate the issues to the engineering department. Thedevelopers would in turn create systems and products that aretailored to match the needs of customers. The political structure ofthe organization has caused the poor sales volume in the organizationsince the engineering department is divided into, which include thedesign and production divisions. The former department invents andintegrates the desired features in the products and systems while thelatter focuses on manufacturing the invented designs.
TheFront/Backdesignis intended to accomplish all-embracing strategic goals that enhancethe development of the company. For example, the marketing departmentacts as a link between the engineering department and the customers.This implies that the marketers have technical skills regarding thefunction of the products and systems so that they can effectivelyhelp customers in solving their problems using the applications. Inaddition, the marketing department listens to the needs of thecustomers, and then informs the engineers so that they can designsystems that are customized to solve the clients’ problems(Thompson & Choi, 2005). However, the political lens portraysDynacorp’s new structure as an arsenal for conflict and competitionamong groups and individuals with differing needs. For example, thedesign and production engineering divisions are located in differentstates. In case, the production manager realizes a fault in thedesign that may require improvement prior to manufacturing a productor a system, is difficult to find assistance from the developers. Thedesign engineers often go different ways after making a model andforwarding to the production department. Besides, the entire team ofdesign engineers is supposed to be available even if the modelrequires minor adjustment on a given section (Katzenbach & Smith,2013).
Themarketing department also criticized the manufacturing sector forfailing to expand into the Asia-Pacific regions and outsource somemanufacturing functions. The marketing argued that this step couldhelp in making the products manufactured by the organization moreaffordable. Dynacorp’s sales volume was significantly decreasingbecause the organization was losing its market to the competitors.The rival companies had a capacity for manufacturing high quality andcheaper products and systems than the Dynacorp’s alternatives. SomeDynacorp’s managers argued that the company could increase itssales volume and profit margin through outsourcing some services. Inaddition, they also proposed establishing new manufacturing plants inthe emerging markets. Since the factories benefit from localexpertise and proximity to the market, Dynacorp could easily surpassits sales target. However, the production managers opposed theproposal because it could allegedly affect the quality of thecompany’s final products (Tosi, & Pilati, 2011).
Dynacorp’sFront/Back structure constituted the dark side of the organization’soperation, as it had no strategy for connecting the productdevelopment functions. The marketing division was required to learnthe customers’ desired improvements in Dynacorp’s systems andproducts, and then inform the design engineers to include thefeatures. However, the marketing department does not communicate thecustomers’ recommendations to the designers. The company’smanagement had established a product manager position, andcross-functionalproductdevelopment teams that were supposed to ensure the intelligencegathered is incorporated in the future systems. However, one of themanufacturing managers argued that Dynacorp has cross-functionaldevelopment ‘meetings’ instead of ‘teams’ as the partiessupposed to share knowledge does not listen to each other (Thompson &Choi, 2005). For example, when the engineering department disagreeson a development issue, they discuss it among themselves instead ofsharing the issue with the marketing department. In addition, thedevelopers often reach an “engineering solution” prior to meetingthe cross-functional team hence, the other parties are not involvedin creating a solution. On the same note, the politics of thecross-functional team does not unite the members. Instead, theparticipants do not share knowledge that can help them to improve thecompany’s products (Tosi, & Pilati, 2011).
Dynacorp’soperation culture has also prevented improved performance of thecompany after it adopted a new operation structure. Product managersare supposed to move across their profession boundaries so that theycan acquire knowledge at different production levels. Nevertheless,the company often promotes individuals upwards without letting themwork across different production units. This implies that the productmanagers are promoted with limited skills thus, they are supposed tolearn the functions of other departments quickly when still holdingsupervision role (Katzenbach & Smith, 2013). Any product managersare often former members of cross-functional teams in the company,but they lack vast experience because they work at functionalcapacity. On the same note, the experienced product managers areoften in very high demand. This implies that they hardly find time torecruit upcoming product designers. As a result, Dynacorp’screativity level has significantly is experiencing slow improvementwhile the competitors have been enjoying faster technology growth.The improved quality of the competing products has taken a huge shareof former Dynacorp’s market (Tosi, & Pilati, 2011).
Thehigh cost of Dynacorps products and systems have decreased its salesand returns. The production manager’s internal politics advocatesthat the company should manufacture all its products in plantslocated in the United States. The high-quality products in turn makemarketing Dynacorp products easy. Nevertheless, the company is losingits market share to the competitors that are capable of makingquality products and at a lower price. Similarly, the production teamoften recommends design improvement on the products at criticalstages. This makes revision the design difficult because engineersstart working in other projects once they complete making a model.The production managers often identify issues with the design modelduring the manufacturing process. Each time they request forcorrection of the design, the engineers can take a long time to solvethe issue because they are located in another state. Additionally,improving small design issues often take many days, months and weeks.The delay in fixing models’ problems makes the final product oftenseveral months late. The delay allows competitors to offer rivalproducts and systems before in advance, thus the reduced customersdemanding for Dynacorp’s systems (Tosi, & Pilati, 2011).
Recommendationsfor solving systemic factors in Dynacorp
Dynacorpcan deliver products to the market on time by bringing the designengineers and production team in the same geographical location. Thismakes it easy for the production experts to develop a closerelationship with the designers, which expedite solving potentialissues in the design. Presently, the design engineers and productionteam are located in different states. Besides, the parties do nothave a close relationship the groups require for convenientconsulting and discussion of potential improvement on the model. Ittakes a long time for the design engineers to fix issues thatproduction managers identify (Katzenbach & Smith, 2013).
Theorganization should also begin outsourcing some of its productionservices and units in order to reduce the overall cost of making theproducts. Establishing a manufacturing plant in Asia-Pacific cansignificantly reduce the overall manufacturing cost. A lowerproduction cost would in turn give it ability to lower the cost ofits products such that they can compete effectively with the rivalmanufacturers. The company has been losing contracts to their rivalsbecause they offer the customers cheaper and flexible solutions.Moreover, the company can surpass competition though establishingplants in emerging markets. The plants in the region improve thesales of the company since the local developers understand thecustomer requirements efficiently (Katzenbach & Smith, 2013).
Lastly,the company should either train or hire a new team of marketingexperts that have technical knowledge on the operation of thesystems. The marketers should have adequate knowledge to explain tothe customers how the products and systems functions and the tasks itcan do. On the same note, the sales persons should investigate theclients’ challenges and recommend possible solutions to the designengineers. The sales team is supposed to be problem solvers.Experienced production managers should supervise Dynacorp’scross-functional teams in order to ensure that participants share,evaluate, and design systems tailored to suit given customers (Tosi,& Pilati, 2011).
Insummary, bad politics used to govern the Front/Back structureDynacorp adopted in hindering its capability to reach its targetsales volume. The organization requires a better-trained sales teamthat offers solutions to the clients. Besides, the company shouldoutsource some production units from overseas as a measure to reducethe overall manufacturing cost. Furthermore, poor relationshipbetween the engineers and marketing team has also been hindering ontime delivery of products to the customers.
Thompson,L. L., & Choi, H.-S. (2005). Creativityand Innovation in Organizational Teams.Mahwah: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, US.
Katzenbach,J.R. & Smith, D.K. (2013). TheWisdom of Teams: Creating the High-Performance Organization.Harvard Business Press.
Tosi,H. L., & Pilati, M. (2011). ManagingOrganizational Behavior: Individuals, Teams, Organization andManagement.Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Pub.