Remanufacturing at Cummins, Inc.

by: Brian Talbot, Xiuli Chao

Publication Date: November 23, 2009
Length: 18 pages
Product ID#: 1-428-798

Core Disciplines: International Business, Operations Management/Supply Chain

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Teaching Note

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Cummins is one of the world’s largest manufacturers and remanufacturers of diesel engines. This case focuses on their largest remanufacturing business, which is based in the U.S. and Mexico. The competitive landscape for this industry is described along with a fairly detailed look at Cummins’ forward and reverse supply chains and their remanufacturing operations. The reader is placed in the role of the new vice president of their remanufacturing division, Sarah Bentley, who is challenged by her CEO to resolve seemingly random late deliveries to several important customers. What makes this challenge particularly difficult for Sarah to understand is the fact that Cummins has been very successful in implementing lean techniques. This has resulted in very flexible, high quality and responsive operations, and overall, great customer satisfaction. Sarah will discover that the remanufacturing business in assembly environments imposes additional considerations on forecasting, production planning, etc.

Teaching Objectives

After reading and discussing the material, students should:

  • describe appropriate business terms and principles approriate to this case,
  • apply critical concepts from earlier learning to define a solution to the case,
  • successfully articulate data and information in support of the solution proposed,
  • critically analyze and discuss other responses and solutions to the case,
  • draw lessons from the case analysis,
  • generalize the learnings of this case to other business challenges and decisions in organizations other than the one analyzed in this case study,
  • demonstrate leadership and scholarship in analysis.