World class manufacturing in the maize milling industry - a case of Mombasa maize millers limited
Sokwalla, Sharuq A
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Global competition has called for innovation and application of best practices. World class manufacturing practices has been identified as a strong answer to the global competition. Mombasa Maize Millers Limited, a king-pin firm in the maize milling industry in Kenya adopted World Class Manufacturing practices in quest for increased operational performance. The objectives of this study were to investigate the extent to which Mombasa Maize Millers Limited has adopted World Class Manufacturing practices, the challenges that Mombasa Maize Millers faced while adopting World Class Manufacturing practices and the effect of World Class Manufacturing practices on the operational performance of Mombasa Maize Millers Limited. This was a case study since the unit of analysis was one organization. Primary data was used for the study. This involved interviewing senior managers at Mombasa Maize Millers Limited. Content analysis was employed in analyzing the data. The third objective required quantitative data where a t-test was done to determine whether the operational performance of Mombasa Maize Millers Limited had improved after adoption of World Class Manufacturing practices at Mombasa Maize Millers Limited. The findings from the study suggest that the organization had adopted World Class Manufacturing practices such as JIT, TQM, TPM, EI, SCM and MRP. The study also revealed that Mombasa Maize Millers Limited had encountered challenges such as employee apprehension, increased expectations of efficiencies, staff resistance and use of technology. These challenges were overcome by top management support, availability of resources and consideration of staff input. The study further found out that there have been improvements in operational performance in variables such as input, output and extraction rates of flour. Other operational performance achievements noted were reduced wastage's and lower down-time of machinery. As part of the recommendations, the research puts forward a necessity for innovations and for continuous improvements. The researcher also recommends flexibility in adapting to technological advancements as this is a dynamic world that demands timely evolvement towards the changing customer tastes and preferences.