Process Problem

Process Improvement
By: Jeremy Krull

Problem Statement: In 2008, Toyota achieved its long-held goal of becoming the no. 1 carmaker in the world, passing General Motors, which had been the leader since 1931.   Shortly after Toyota gained that distinction, global auto sales plunged, leading to a loss for the fiscal year of $4.8 billion, the largest in the company’s 72-year history.
As Toyota returned to the positive in late 2009, its reputation for safety and quality were battered by a series of recalls.   The issue of unintended acceleration would lead the company through a bruising gantlet of government investigations, lawsuits from crash victims and one of the heaviest fines ever imposed on a car manufacturer in the United States.
Quality was the main point of interest throughout the Toyota crisis and seems to still be at fault even today.   Quality is (1) the characteristics of a product or service that bear on its ability to satisfy stated or implied needs and (2) a product or service free of deficiencies (2011, Pg. 55).   Obviously the case for Toyota was that they floated away from the quality aspect of production to the quantity of production.   Toyota was focused hard on being the biggest auto manufacturer in the world and they were looking to cut as many corners as they could.   But unfortunately, most corners that were cut caused problems and Toyota ended up in a huge deficit with recalls, claims, and millions in payouts.   Toyota needs to bring its focus back to the customer focus basis that it once had that made them so successful.   By going back to their basics, they can put confidence back into the consumer and start rebuilding their empire and eventually make their way to the top consumer pick.
Background of the issue: Recall timeline
  * Sep 26, 2007 – US: 55,000 Camry and ES 350 cars in "all-weather" floor mat recall.
  * Nov 02, 2009 – US: 3.8 million Toyota and Lexus vehicles again recalled due to floor mat problem, this time for all...