GSGM7334: Serbaneka Toy Company- Kamal, the Project Manager at Serbaneka Toy Company (Serbaneka), had just submitted a proposal for additional funding to the new product review committee: Project Management, Case Study, UNITAR, Malaysia

Serbaneka Toy Company

Kamal, the Project Manager at Serbaneka Toy Company (Serbaneka), had just submitted a proposal for additional funding to the new product review committee. He recommended that Serbaneka introduce, through its retail distribution network, a new children’s game based on the popular cartoon characters Upin & Ipin.

Kamal felt that if he could get the game out in the market before Hari Raya Puasa, Serbaneka could take full advantage of what he felt would be a strong market demand. He estimated that the sales for these types of games could reach up to RM 200,000. However, due to the volatility of the market for these types of games, Kamal could not be certain that the product would have the same level of market acceptance the next year. It was now May 6, 2023, and Kamal knew he would have to manage the timing of the project carefully in order to meet the deadline for delivery of September 15th, 2023 which was just 19 weeks away.

Serbaneka’s head office was in Kajang, Selangor, where it also operated a manufacturing plant and distribution centre. Whenever possible, Serbaneka preferred to manufacture its products in-house.

Kamal expected feedback from the new product review committee at the end of the week, at which time he would begin coordinating the launch of the project. Since Kamal was an experienced project manager, he established a preliminary schedule of activities, as shown in Exhibit 1 below.

Based on this schedule, Kamal felt he could start work on some activities immediately, such as finalizing the product design and placing an order for the equipment. However, many of the activities had to be performed sequentially. For example, he could not train the workers until the equipment was installed and the tools for the machine were completed. Similarly, he could not order the raw materials until the engineering work was completed and the advertising plan was completed since the advertising plan would influence the ultimate colour selection.

Concerned about the delivery schedule, Kamal investigated opportunities to cut the project time. After talking with the marketing manager, Cik Siti, Kamal learned that he could reduce the cost of product advertising. Cik Siti anticipated only a small 1% reduction in sales for each week of lost advertising. However, Cik Siti indicated that Kamal needed at least six weeks of advertising for a new product of this nature.

Kamal also spoke with Shahrul, the production manager at the tool shop. Shahrul offered to speed up the tool building by working on two consecutive weekends, for an additional cost of RM10,000. Shahrul thought he could improve their delivery time by two weeks if Kamal authorized this additional cost.

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Questions:

1. Prepare the network diagram for the above project. How long will it take to complete the project?

2. Establish the ‘float’ or ‘slack’ times for each activity.

3. Based on the information in the case study, evaluate the options Kamal has to meet the September 15th deadline. What is your recommendation?

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