Toyota’s goals for operations are affected both by internal as well as external factors. Do you feel that Toyota’s operations are more affected by external or internal factors?
Operational goals are focused, specific targets for the Operations Management function in an organization. Operations management refers to the use of resources by an organisation in order for it to provide goods and services that are right for customers.
As firms need to ensure that their operational goals are consistent, they can be influenced or determined by internal factors. The chances of the business’s overall goals not being met are high if they don’t match. Toyota’s main goal is to give customers the best quality and lowest cost at the shortest lead time, all while minimising their environmental impact. As such, Toyota will base its operational objectives on efficiency and environment. Toyota’s goals are to improve efficiency and reduce environmental impact. They have set their operational objectives accordingly. They would have set different operational goals if their corporate aims had been different (for instance, to be most profitable). Overall, corporate aims are important because they determine and decide what the operational targets should be.
External factors are also important in influencing operational objectives for businesses such as the environmental legislation/pressures from the government and consumers. Businesses that are eco-friendly can benefit from certificates and rewards. Other businesses may not. Toyota and other car companies are increasingly focusing on this eco-friendly feature. Both the government and consumers have pushed businesses to adopt it. Toyota has established a number of new operational targets based around the environment, including a reduction in emissions by 50%. Toyota may have been motivated by the environmental costs and benefits associated with being more eco-friendly. Environmentally friendly objectives are not always in line with corporate goals, especially for smaller firms and firms looking to maximize profits. Toyota has won numerous awards for their investment. Big Tick has gained a great reputation and no doubt increased demand.
A firm’s resources and product can also have an impact on operational objectives. Different markets (niche vs mass) can also create different goals. Toyota is known for its successful and profitable business. Toyota also has an easy-to-mass produce product, which makes it a good candidate to be a mass producer. Toyota is able to achieve ambitious goals through their expensive and good training/HR. This is how they have set their objective to “never transfer poor quality from one member to another” and this has been a result of their human resources system. Toyota’s goals have evolved or changed as a result of its resources, size and other factors.
The technology factor can also influence the level of ambition and, in some cases, determine it. Because technology is improving, it’s possible to do more improvements. This will save you money in the long run but also help improve/influence the business’s goals. Toyota considers this to be a key factor when it comes to influencing their operational goals. Their long-term goal is to maximize efficiency and to achieve this, they need to add a lot of technology to the process. They have introduced more energy-efficient cars and reduced the time needed to change models. The business can save money by reducing waste and implementing the 5R’s. The more advanced technology is, the better a company can perform and the lower the costs. This influences how far they can reach their goal and how realistic their operational goals can be.
As a conclusion, both internal and external factors affect operational objectives in varying degrees. For instance, the pressures of the environment and the positive reputation that would come from being more environmentally friendly could cause a business to have eco-friendly goals. Toyota is an automobile company, so I’d say external factors are more important to them than other businesses. Despite this, I feel for most businesses that internal influences are more important. They may even have an impact on the overall goals of the business. Overall, it would seem that internal goals would be a more significant factor for most companies when determining their objectives. However I believe for Toyota and many other car manufacturers, recent developments in technology and the changing environment will have an impact on the company’s operational objectives.