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Custom Chip case: Management Case Study


Custom Chip, Inc. is a manufacturing company that specializes in components and custom chips that are used in satellite transmitters, radars and radio frequency apparatus. The company was established in 1977 and has been flourishing swiftly ever since. Frank Questin, one of the managers at Custom Chip under the Product engineering department is facing a lot of challenges while trying to carry out his duties and responsibilities.

The challenges sometimes made him query his efficiency and effectiveness in accomplishing his managerial responsibilities. This paper analyses the key problems that faces Frank, Pros and cons of Frank’s managerial style, source of conflicts in different departments, advantages and disadvantages of Custom Chip organizational structure and steps that Frank should take to improve this situation.

Key problems facing Frank

One of the problems facing Frank is inadequate time to accomplish his duties and responsibilities due to frequent disruption and problems brought to him by his colleagues. He lacks the time to develop a proposal that would help in resolving difficulties of documentation in manufacturing. Secondly, lack of accessibility to application engineers is another problem that faces Frank.

Frank’s department has to work hand in hand with other departments to accomplish the company’s objectives. The lack of accessibility to people working in other departments leads to poor coordination of activities which eventually affects the final output of the organization.

Thirdly, Frank also faces the problem of understaffing in his department. This exerts a lot of pressure on the few employees to accomplish the numerous tasks more effectively and efficiently.

Pros and Cons of Frank’s managerial style

According to Custom Chip case, Frank tries to solve a number of conflicts that arise among the people in the different departments. He uses collaborative managerial style to handle and solve the conflicts. Collaborative style allows the participation of all the people involved in solving the conflict. Some of the advantages of collaborative style include trust building among team members through discussion and dialogue.

The collaborative process also enables the people involved to gain access to new and superior information and ideas from each other. Furthermore, collaborative style ensures a better chance for substantive outcomes. On the other hand, collaborative style is time consuming and is likely to lead to a lot of friction among the people involved.

Source of conflict among the different departments

The major source of conflict lies in the objectives of the departments. The departments in Custom Chip Company include product engineering department, manufacturing department and application engineers department. Each department might compromise quality of work just to achieve their objectives.

For instance, the product engineering department is responsible for improving and maintaining outputs hence they have the mandate to stop production if it is not up to standards. Stopping production may prevent the manufacturing department from achieving its objective of meeting standards of productivity and working within a time frame.

Pros and cons of Custom Chip Inc.’s organizational structure

Custom Chip Company operates under a functional organization structure where the organization is partitioned into the different functional areas. The different areas are headed by specialists who have authority over other employees in that function. Advantages of functional organizational structure include better departmental control due to specialization.

The structure also encourages simplified training and follows principle of career specialization. On the other hand, functional structure may lead to poor coordination between functions.

Moreover, the structure might limit the growth of the organization due to overspecialization and narrow perspectives of the key staff. Furthermore, the organizational structure may encourage conflict of interest between the different functions of the company.

Steps for improving Custom Chip Company

Frank being the product engineering manager, he is responsible for all the employees and functions under his department. In order to improve the situation of the company, Frank should mobilize his team to coordinate with application engineering department during the design phase.

The product engineers can make use of their expert knowledge to provide valuable input in order to improve the yields of new products. Moreover, Frank’s department should engage in intensive research in order to help in improving the end product. In addition, they should accurately document the steps of manufacturing their products, particularly those that are in high demand in order to avoid any delays.


From the Custom Chip case, it is evident that Frank faces a lot of challenges while carrying out his duties at the company. He tries very hard to have an amicable relationship with fellow colleagues despite their disagreements every other time.

In every organization especially that with functional structure, there are many activities that need proper coordination with other departments in order to be accomplished more efficiently and effectively.

One or more departments may feel that their work is being sabotaged if the other does not fulfill their assigned objectives. This might lead to a lot of friction and conflict which in the long run might interfere with the ultimate performance of the company as a whole.

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"Custom Chip case: Management." IvyPanda, 21 Dec. 2019, ivypanda.com/essays/custom-chip-case-management/.

1. IvyPanda. "Custom Chip case: Management." December 21, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/custom-chip-case-management/.


IvyPanda. "Custom Chip case: Management." December 21, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/custom-chip-case-management/.


IvyPanda. 2019. "Custom Chip case: Management." December 21, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/custom-chip-case-management/.


IvyPanda. (2019) 'Custom Chip case: Management'. 21 December.

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