Draper Engineering Case Study

Draper Engineering Case Study

Draper Engineering Ltd makes a range of drive shafts and track rods for the automotive and transport industry.  The company has invested heavily in modern

manufacturing technology in order to remain competitive.  Current customers include four of the major European car manufacturers and two large American truck

manufacturers.  A large proportion of this technology is still not working today.

The workforce at Draper’s is very loyal.  Many of the technical and middle management personnel have worked for the company for over 20 years respectively.  However,

in the last 5 years staff turnover in the production area has been high.  Many incentives have been tried to reverse this trend, but all have failed.  For management

and staff technical grades, staff turnover is low, but the recent appointment of a new operations director has resulted in one or two notable departures.  Eighteen

months ago the in-house logistics operations were outsourced to Hardy Logistics Ltd a large international logistics company with numerous international contracts.

Hardy’s performance to date has been rather indifferent with numerous late deliveries and a significant amount of damaged stock being delivered to customers.  In

recent months there has been some improvement in the quality of this service, especially with regards to late deliveries.

Draper’s have a large engineering department headed by the Director of Engineering who is responsible for over 150 employees.  The company works a three shift system

and has up to 12 maintenance personnel on any one shift.  The functions of the engineering department are broken down into the following:

•    Routine maintenance
•    Project engineering
•    Development engineering
•    Design
•    Fabrication
•    Site services

A few years ago the site services was outsourced to Bang IT and Bend IT a building company and since then Draper’s have been beset with problems.  It is a frequent

occurrence for jobs to be started and then finished about 6 months later.  This often has serious impact on production and recently scaffolding was put up in the press

shop and no work has taken place so far.

The shift maintenance personnel report to the shift manager who in return reports to the production manager, despite the fact that their immediate line manager is the

Engineering Maintenance Manger who frequently leaves them work to do on shift.  This often causes friction between various members of staff as there is a varying level

of skills among the shift engineers and shift electricians with some being competent time served tradesman and others not.

The project and developmental engineering work frequently lacks co-ordination and planning.  Many projects are not adequately thought through and it is often the case

that new equipment arrives for installation and no one knows what it is for.  Where work is planned, it is often the case that the relevant section manager has not

been informed about it.

Planned maintenance is almost non-existent and most maintenance is done on the basis of “If it isn’t broken then don’t try and fix it.”  A recent company shutdown for

maintenance was an absolute disaster, with large amounts of maintenance not completed on time, and in some cases, machines were stripped down to only find that the

replacement parts had not been ordered.


1.    Perform a SWOT analysis on Draper Engineering using the case study provided.  Explain in detail how Draper can improve five of the issues identified from the

SWOT analysis.

2.    Analyse how Draper’s could re-organise the maintenance department to improve efficiency.

3.    Discuss how Draper’s should deal with Bang IT and Bend IT in order to improve the performance of this contractor.

You report should be laid out as follows:

Title Page
Contents Page
Question 1
Question 2
Question 3
Reference page


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