Case | HBS Case Collection | April 1986 (Revised May 1988)

Sun Microsystems, Inc. (B)

by Kim B. Clark

Abstract

Dissects the manufacturing process and procedures of a high-end computer manufacturer. The main issue is how to introduce new products and ramp them up quickly in a competitive environment where time-to-market is crucial. Focuses on engineering change orders--how they are proposed, documented, approved, and implemented--and raises questions about how the procedure might be made more efficient. The case also allows students to grapple with other issues, such as how to organize pilot production most effectively and how to organize the process flow in a plant where many products are assembled on the same line.

Keywords: Factories, Labs, and Plants; Time Management; Product Launch; Production; Business Processes; Competitive Strategy; Computer Industry;

Citation:

Clark, Kim B. "Sun Microsystems, Inc. (B)." Harvard Business School Case 686-134, April 1986. (Revised May 1988.)