DIY Health Tests

DIY Health Tests

At-home health tests may promote better health at a lower cost.

Lab testing ranks high among the most unpleasant experiences people endure in their lifetimes. Because of their adverse relationship with lab testing and its cost, patients tend to miss screenings or simply ignore them. Everlywell has created multiple at-home tests that make it more convenient and cheaper for patients to get tested.


Video Spotlight: At Home Lab Testing


This post is based on the Bloomberg Businessweek article, At-Home Health Tests Get the Direct-to-Consumer Treatment, by A. Cohen, July 23, 2019, and the YouTube video, EverlyWell – At Home Lab Testing – How It Worksby EverlyWell, December 19, 2017. Image source: Shutterstock/peter verreussel.

Discussion Questions:

1. Using the HOQ framework, what are customer and product/process design requirements for lab testing?

Guidance: The patients’ or customers’ requirements are: health, convenience, speed, privacy, low cost, reliability, and personal involvement in care. The product/process requirements include test availability at major pharmacies, at-home testing for privacy, affordable retail cost and partnership with insurance companies, easy mail-in process, online results and professional consultation, and CLIA-certified labs.

2. What are the steps you go through when getting a lab Continue reading

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Lean Green PCB Machines

Lean Green PCB Machines

Applied Technical Services, maker of printed circuit boards embedded in products from sneakers to streetlights, follows lean principles to achieve operational success despite supply challenges such as part shortages, rising component costs, and bloated lead times.

Its 2018 operational achievements include 99.6% on-time delivery, 22% improvement in first-pass yield, 127% increase in production employees, and $140,000 cost savings from improvement projects.

This post is based on the Industry Week article, 2018 IW Best Plants Winner: ATS Defies the World, by Travis Hessman, March 21, 2019. Image source: Ron Chapple Stock/FotoSearch/Glow Images

Discussion Questions:

1. What elements of total quality management contribute to Applied Technical Services’ operational success?

Guidance: Elements of Applied Technical Services’ total quality management include having a culture of serving customers, having a close relationship between engineering and production, having a close relationship with customers and suppliers, using a team approach to meet quality, delivery and revenue targets, and empowering employees to be change agents.

2. In what ways do lean operations address Applied Technical Services’ supply challenges?

Guidance: Elements of Applied Technical Services’ lean operations include streamlined production and material flows , waste elimination, standardized work and tools, continuous improvement, visual control, high quality, and high-performance culture.

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Domino’s Expands Use of Virtual Ordering

Domino’s Expands Use of Virtual Ordering

Domino’s is trying out an Artificial Intelligence (AI) system to take phone orders.

Domino’s ordering assistant, “Dom”, has been available on smartphone apps since 2014, and has been very successful as part of the phone app, allowing customers to place voice orders.  Using voice commands provides a hands-free methods of placing an order.

Dom also exists as a chatbot on Facebook and on Domino’s webpage.  Now, Domino’s is moving this technology to phone orders with a limited test introduction.

This post is based on the Chain Storage article, Pizza chain’s virtual ordering assistant takes on a new task, by Deena M. Amato-McCoy, April 23, 2018. Image source: Shutterstock / Ljupco Smokovski.

Discussion Questions:

1. Why would Domino’s want to use this technology?

Guidance: The biggest reasons are related to cost.  The workers at the store can now concentrate on filling the orders rather than taking the phone calls, or tracking orders.  This should result in labor savings.

2. What problems might Domino’s encounter with the use of Dom for phone orders.

Guidance: Previous uses of Dom, including voice ordering through the smartphone app, have been well received.  Domino’s use of humor Continue reading

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