The Story of the Boeing Company

The Boeing Company is considered as one of the biggest and most progressive aerospace companies in the world. The company manufactures both commercial jetliners and military aircrafts. In addition, Boeing Company provides rotorcrafts, missiles, satellites, electronic and defense systems, launch vehicles and produces the advancing of communication and information systems. NASA awarded a contract with Boeing Company, and today it is the prime provider of satellites to NASA’s International Space Station. The company also offers numerous commercial and military airline support services. The products and services produced by Boeing Company are widespread in more than 150 countries of the world; besides, Boeing Company is considered to be the largest US exporter (Boeing Company, 2014).

Boeing Company has an old tradition in producing aerospace-related technologies, and provides numerous innovations on all levels. Nowadays, the company continues to expand the product line to meet all customers’ needs and be on the top among other aerospace companies. The goal of the company is to create new, more effective airplane designs, to create advanced technology solutions, integrate military platforms, provide connectivity on moving platforms, modernize defense systems and the warfighter through network-centric operations, and arrange financing solutions for its clients (Yenne, 2005).

The main headquarter is located in Chicago; there are about 170,000 employees, who work in the Boeing Company in the United States and in more than 65 countries all over the world. The company hires only the high-qualified employees and today it has 140,000 people with college degree and about 35,000 people with advanced degrees. Moreover, the company provides constant educational training to improve the workability of its employees and enlarge their knowledge about the latest tendencies in aerospace manufacturing.

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History

In 1916, William Boeing and Conrad Westervelt founded the Pacific Aero Products Company in Seattle. One year later, Westervelt had to leave the company because of the World War I, and thus, it was renamed into Boeing Airplane Company. The cooperation with Navy had its benefits because it gave the opportunity to manufacture aircrafts, which were first used by the military forces in the World War I. In 1919, Boeing Company started the first international air postal line between Victoria in British Columbia and Seattle. In 1927, they have extended their rage of mail distribution, and some more cities and states were included in this list; among them one can outline San Francisco, Chicago, California and Illinois. For this goal, the designers constructed the first commercial airplane, the Model 40.

World War II gave an impulse to the development of new aircrafts. B-17 Flying Fortress should be outlined among them; the plane is considered to be the pride of the U.S. bombers. This aircraft could be half-damaged, but it still was able to fly and even had a safety landing. During the World War II, the majority of employees in Boeing Company were women, but still the company produced seventeen B-17 aircrafts every day. Another famous aircraft was B-29 bomber, which carried the atomic bomb to Hiroshima in 1945. Later, this model was advanced and the company produced a new model of the B-29 bomber (Sharpe & Shaw, 2001).

In 1950s, Boeing Company started to compete with McDonnell-Douglas, which produced the high-quality propeller aircrafts. In these conditions, Boeing Company decided to give up its military manufacture and start to produce new commercial jet-aircrafts.
In 1958, the company manufactured the 707, and it brought a great a success to Boeing Company; later, this model was advanced by Boeing 727, 737, and finally a famous 747. In 1961, Boeing Company put efforts in the development of other technologies such as the huge Saturn rocket, which brought the Apollo to the moon.

During the next decades, the company put many efforts to improve the models of the commercial aircrafts, and the company upgraded the 707 series by introducing Boeing 777. In 1970, the company finished the designing of the first Jumbo Jet, which could carry 490 passengers. Despite the fact that Boeing Company had been producing the best aircrafts in the world, its manufacture demanded enormous costs, and soon the company was brought to the edge of bankruptcy. In 1973, the company fired almost sixty percent of its staff, but due to the military contracts, Boeing Company could retrieve its previous position in the world market.

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In 1995, Boeing Company faced the same problems again, and almost twenty-five present of its staff had to leave the company. However, the company could bring the new model of 777, which was designed by using the newest computer technologies of that period, and became the blockbuster in the market. The new orders brought billions of dollars to the company, which has become the biggest supplier of the NASA, and produced rocket stages and other components for the international Space Station (Camoletti, Cross, & Evans, 2012).
The number of staff member was reducing during the whole period of the company existence. In 1970 there were 35,000 employees, while by 2003 its number was only 18,000. Starting from 1960s, the company was producing about 600 aircrafts per year, but later its number was dropped to 350. Besides commercial and military aircrafts, the company also produced helicopters, such as the famous Apache.

Company Strategy

Nowadays, the current direction of Boeing Company’s plan of actions is to make an analysis of the non-military aircraft production and to identify its demands. As a result, the company is aimed at finding out the solution that could fulfill this segment. Today there exist two leaders, which manufacture aircrafts in global market; these are Airbus and Boeing. The last one is presented as a free market leader, while Airbus is introduced as not “not-absolutely-free” method of the EU to stabilize competition in the strategic market. According to this fact, there is a great demand to review the Boeing’s strategy execution, provide competitive changes, and stay on the top of the technological progress to increase the marketability of company’s products.

Boeing Company introduces transformation strategy of three points in the commercial segment

This plan includes the following transformations:

  • Making the transformation and simplifying of the offerings.
  • Making the transformation of the relationships with customers in order to satisfy all customers’ needs and provide the orders on time.
  • Making the transformation of the product system, using the lean and process.

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Offering a New Product

The current goal of Boeing Company is the development of Boeing 787, one of the newest and most efficient models, which is designed according to the latest technological achievements in aerospace. The airplane is able to carry three hundred people and fly 9,000 miles, while it requires low costs and low quantity of fuel. The Dreamliner is considered as breakthrough in the aircraft design, and it will also introduce new standards of aircraft’s performance and passengers’ comfort (Norris & Wagner, 2009).

Relationships With Customers

Boeing Company introduces a new conversion program, which will help its customers to run their business more efficiently and conveniently. The company is also ready to respond to all customers’ needs in the Commercial Aviation Services, which works all day round and during the whole year.

Innovation of System Production

The strategy predetermines the usage of disciplined production in order to receive the highest delivery levels during the next few years. The given approach continues to use the Lean principles in the company with the new sources in the business. According to this fact, Boeing ran its “manufacturer of the future”, which is located in Washington. These new achievements with Lean will be useful in dealing with difficult operations.

Lean+

The employees of Boeing Company have successfully used Lean+ principles in order to improve the productivity of several product lines. For instance, Boeing Company has cut down the final assembly line twice on production of the Boeing 737, and today, these new adaptations are used in the assembly line of the Boeing 777. The experience obtained from the Boeing 737 and the Boeing 777 was used for the assembly line of the Boeing 787. Moreover, there is one more example; it is the innovation that was introduced by two Boeing workers. They provided the modification for seat installation; as a result, they reduced installation time on sixty percent and got rid of the necessity to lift the seats from the floor directly into the aircraft (Camoletti, Cross, & Evans, 2012). Their colleagues adapted this approach to provide some new innovation and make the prevention of the additional costs. Lean+ will increase the productivity of Boeing Company, but it requires a detailed study in order to implement this approach more efficiently and widespread in the whole enterprise. The further development of Lean+ will probably give a way for the providing of new improvements in the manufacturing beyond the 787. If the company could achieve this goal, it would receive the numerous advantages over other competitors and a stable position in the market for constant growth.

To sum up, it can be said that Boeing Company has all chances to achieve all these goals successfully, but it should also concentrate its attention on taping other markets in its all operations.

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