Case Study Of Rapid Prototyping

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Case Study Of Rapid Prototyping

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Case Study Of Rapid Prototyping

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Discuss about the Case Study about Rapid Prototyping. 

The report focuses on the case study about Rapid Prototyping. The case study mainly aims at the project management problem that may occur if the project management methodologies are not implemented in a proper way. Frank Billings dreamt of working for a rapid prototype equipment manufacturer. However, after finishing his engineering, he joined Cocable as he was overloaded with school loans and paying off those loans was his first priority. After working In Cocable for a few years, he got the chance to work for his dream job, that is to work with rapid prototyping [1]. The case study assessment discusses the project management methodologies and their inefficiency unsuccessful implementation regarding this case. The detailed analysis of the case study is elaborated in the following paragraphs.
Case Study Assessment
The case study assessment broadly discusses the lesson learnt from the case, problem definition and their probable causes. It further elaborates how the way, project scope could have been better.  
Problem Definition
Frank, after getting the opportunity to work for his dream project, worked day and night for three months to complete the project in the scheduled time. He was given this project as his performance of work in Cocable was praiseworthy, however, he was inexperienced in the field of rapid prototyping. The result was that, the machine failed to perform in the test run although it was built according to the specifications. The main problem was that, CAD the model was 62 inches long while the maximum allowed length for the rapid prototyping machines can be a maximum of 55 inches. The confusion arose as according to Cocable, GE requested the length to be 62 inches; however, GE claimed that they never specified the maximum length. The result of the confusion was that, the whole project was running late.
Possible Causes
The probable causes of the project failure are listed below-
1) The machine failed as the length of the CAD model was 62 inches instead of 55 inches. The drastic difference in the length is mainly due to the unclear specifications provided by Cocable.
2) Frank was in experienced in the field of rapid prototyping and therefore, it was not a very good decision to handover the project to Frank, which was to be completed within a very restricted time [2].
3) A proper project methodology includes a project plan, which was not followed in this case.
4) The specifications of the project were not clear and Frank after getting the project did not cross check the requirements and specifications even once before initiating the project, which was one of the major cause of the problem [3]. 
5) The time allotted to Frank was very and it is difficult to manage and implement every phases of a project methodology in that constricted time.
6) The project scope was not clearly defined which was one of the major causes of the problem [4].
7) Frank did not clarify the specifications given to him and started working on the project with the wrong specification.
Lesson Learnt
The lesson learnt after evaluating the case study is that, clarifying the specification of a project with every stakeholder is essential. No communication gap should be ensured in any project. The confusion about the specification of the CAD model arouse due to a gap of communication among the stakeholders. Moreover, since the prototype was to be built for an airplane engine, there was no room for error. Therefore, the three months allotted for building the machine was too low keeping in mind the complexity of the project.
Who should pay for the changes?
Cocable is responsible to pay for the changes because the entire project was given to Cocable and Frank was working for them. Therefore, it was the responsibility of Cocable to have a clear specification of the project. It the specifications of the CAD model were crosschecked with GE at the initiation of the project, Cocable could have prevented this considerable loss and late in delivering the completed project. GE will not pay for the changes as GE hired Cocable for the project and it was their responsibility to clarify the project specifications before starting on with the work [5].
What could have been done?
In order to define the scope in a correct manner, a proper project management plan was necessary. The communication plan among the stakeholders of the project was not clearly defined and very little communication was carried out among them, which was a major reason of the specification confusion. A proper project plan and communication plan could have improved the project scope [6].
In order to avoid the problems:
1) Cocable could have maintained an approved document of the specifications, and then GE would not have been able to deny their claim.
2) Frack could have ensured that the project progress report is submitted to Cocable from time to time.
3) Cocable should have help regular meetings with GE to inform them about the project progress and take their feedback.
4) The project should have been allocated a longer time as Frank was in experienced in the field of Rapid prototyping although he had a wide knowledge about the subject.
5) Frank should have also clarified the project specification before the project initiation
6) Proper unit testing was necessary before the final test run [7].
Therefore, from the above discussions, it can be concluded that the project failed mainly because the project management methodologies are not implemented successfully across the organization. The confusion about the specification of CAD model mainly arose because of the communication gap between GE and Cocable. This mistake led to the project delay and a huge loss of money. This loss could have been avoided if a proper project methodology was considered for this particular project. The project development methodology applied in this case has numerous loopholes and therefore, led to the significant loss. This could have been avoided with a strategic approach towards the problem.
Campbell, D. Bourell and I. Gibson, “Additive manufacturing: rapid prototyping comes of age”, Rapid Prototyping Journal, vol. 18, no. 4, pp. 255-258, 2012.
Pham, Duc, and Stefan S. Dimov. Rapid manufacturing. Springer Science & Business Media, 2012.
H. Kerzner, Project management. Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons, Inc, 2017.
Mirza, Muhammad Nabeel, Zohreh Pourzolfaghar, and Mojde Shahnazari. “Significance of scope in project success.” Procedia Technology 9 (2013): 722-729.
Young, Trevor L. Successful project management. Vol. 52. Kogan Page Publishers, 2013.
Pham, Duc, and Stefan S. Dimov. Rapid manufacturing. Springer Science & Business Media, 2012.
Larson, Erik W., and Clifford Gray. Project Management. McGraw-Hill, 2013

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