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Operations Management - Case Analysis: Southwestern University

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Operations Management - Case Analysis: Southwestern University

Southwestern University: (C)*


The popularity of Southwestern University’s football program under its new coach Phil Flamm surged in each of the 5 years since his arrival at the Stephenville, Texas, college. (See Southwestern University: (A) in Chapter 3 and (B) in Chapter 4.) With a football stadium close to maxing out at 54,000 seats and a vocal coach pushing for a new stadium, SWU president Joel Wisner faced some difficult decisions. After a phenomenal upset victory over its archrival, the University of Texas, at the homecoming game in the fall, Dr. Wisner was not as happy as one would think. Instead of ecstatic alumni, students, and faculty, all Wisner heard were complaints. “The lines at the concession stands were too long”; “Parking was harder to find and farther away than in the old days” (that is, before the team won regularly); “Seats weren’t comfortable”; “Traffic was backed up halfway to Dallas”; and on and on. “A college president just can’t win,” muttered Wisner to himself.


At his staff meeting the following Monday, Wisner turned to his VP of administration, Leslie Gardner. “I wish you would take care of these football complaints, Leslie,” he said. “See what the real problems are and let me know how you’ve resolved them.” Gardner wasn’t surprised at the request. “I’ve already got a handle on it, Joel,” she replied. “We’ve been randomly surveying 50 fans per game for the past year to see what’s on their minds. It’s all part of my campuswide TQM effort. Let me tally things up and I’ll get back to you in a week.”


When she returned to her office, Gardner pulled out the file her assistant had compiled (see Table 6.6). “There’s a lot of information here,” she thought.


TABLE 6.6 Fan Satisfaction Survey Results (N=250)(N=250)




Overall Grade




A




B




C




D




F




Game Day




A. Parking




90




105




45




5




5




B. Traffic




50




85




48




52




15




C. Seating




45




30




115




35




25




D. Entertainment




160




35




26




10




19




E. Printed Program




66




34




98




22




30




Tickets




A. Pricing




105




104




16




15




10




B. Season Ticket Plans




75




80




54




41




0




Concessions




A. Prices




16




116




58




58




2




B. Selection of Foods




155




60




24




11




0




C. Speed of Service




35




45




46




48




76




Respondents




Alumnus




113




Student




83




Faculty/Staff




16




None of the above




38




Open-Ended Comments on Survey Cards:




Parking a mess


Add a skybox


Get better cheerleaders


Double the parking attendants


Everything is okay


Too crowded


Seats too narrow


Great food


Phil F. for President!


I smelled drugs being smoked


Stadium is ancient


Seats are like rocks


Not enough cops for traffic


Game starts too late


Hire more traffic cops


Need new band


Great!




More hot dog stands


Seats are all metal


Need skyboxes


Seats stink


Go SWU!


Lines are awful


Seats are uncomfortable


I will pay more for better view


Get a new stadium


Student dress code needed


I want cushioned seats


Not enough police


Students too rowdy


Parking terrible


Toilets weren’t clean


Not enough handicap spots in lot


Well done, SWU




Put in bigger seats


Friendly ushers


Need better seats


Expand parking lots


Hate the bleacher seats


Hot dogs cold


$3 for a coffee? No way!


Get some skyboxes


Love the new uniforms


Took an hour to park


Coach is terrific


More water fountains


Better seats


Seats not comfy


Bigger parking lot


I’m too old for bench seats


Cold coffee served at game




My company will buy a skybox—build it!


Programs overpriced


Want softer seats


Beat those Longhorns!


I’ll pay for a skybox


Seats too small


Band was terrific


Love Phil Flamm


Everything is great


Build new stadium


Move games to Dallas


No complaints


Dirty bathroom




*This integrated case study runs throughout the text. Other issues facing Southwestern’s football stadium include: (A) Managing the renovation project (Chapter 3); (B) Forecasting game attendance (Chapter 4); (D) Break-even analysis of food services (Supplement 7 Web site); (E) Locating the new stadium (Chapter 8 Web site); (F) Inventory planning of football programs (Chapter 12 Web site); and (G) Scheduling of campus security officers/staff for game days (Chapter 13 Web site).


Discussion Questions




Using at least two different quality tools, analyze the data and present your conclusions.

How could the survey have been more useful?

What is the next step?


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