Introduction to operations and supply chain management

1. The suitable quantitative forecast model for Jacob is the Last Period Model. Basically, a forecast is an estimate of the future level of some variable. In this case, the set of three drivers namely the Bomber, the Hooker, and the Sir Slice-A-Lot constitute a variable and the work cell is another variable. It can be seen that the future level of the variable including the three mentioned drivers is a function of time which determines the demand. The total number of sales is increasing with time which entails that the demand of the drivers is increasing showing a relation between the two variables, demand of drivers and time. As such, the type of forecast is demand and it is at market level since the numbers of sales seem to be increasing in the market in which the firm operates. This model has been chosen because it uses a series of demand observations over a period of time in a chronological order in order to develop forecasts. Therefore, the Last Period Model has been selected because it is assumed that the demand of each of the three drivers is constantly increasing with time. This model assumes that the level of demand for the current period is used as a forecast for the next period. For each period, it can be seen that the current demand of each driver seems to be increasing as illustrated in the table of data given. As such, this is a suitable model that can be used to forecast demand of the drivers offered by Top Slice Company.
2. According to the Last Period Model, Top Slice Company should have the expanded work cell up and running by the end of June 2012 as presented in the table given. For each month, it can be seen that the total number of the three drivers is increasing by an average of about 25. For instance, in January 2012, the number of drivers manufactured was 2559 and in February of the same year they increased to 2584 showing an increase of 25 drivers. In March 2012, a total of 2609 drivers were manufactured again showing an average increase of 25 drivers from the previous month. Therefore, the end of June is the ideal period to have the work cell up and running. As noted, the current work cell is capable of producing only 2700 drivers a month. Given the monthly average increase in the number of drivers manufactured, it can be seen that by the end of June, about 2675 drivers would be manufactured and by July, the maximum capacity of 2700 would be reached. Therefore, it is wise for Jacob to initiate the expansion of the work cell earlier in order to avoid inconveniences when the current work cell reaches its maximum capacity against the constantly increasing demand of drivers. A grace period of one month would enable smooth transition from the current production capacity to the desired level of manufacturing that can keep pace with the increasing demand for drivers.