Online Class Assignment

Process Improvement Plan  

Student Name

Capella University 

MBA-FPX 5016 Assessment 1

Operations Management for Leaders 

Dr. Rob Shah

May 21, 2023

Wild Dog Coffee Company: Process Improvement Plan


Wild Dog Coffee Company is a locally owned coffee company that plans to expand its operations to a new location. The company aims to maintain consistency in its espresso process and menu while experimenting with different food items. Before expanding, it is essential to refine the espresso production process and analyze internal processes to ensure an effective opening of the second location.

Steps of Process Improvement Plan

The coffee and espresso portion of Wild Dog Coffee Company is the core of its business. To facilitate expansion and future expansions, it is crucial to assess and analyze the espresso production process to achieve consistent quality and efficiency. This core process delivers value to external customers (Krajewski et al., 2019). Maintaining consistent quality and high delivery speed across all locations is vital for the brand’s consistency.

To ensure quality and consistency, it is beneficial to adopt strategies employed by fast-food companies like McDonald’s. Such companies excel in standardized work methods, staff training processes, and procurement of raw materials to achieve consistent product and process quality across multiple stores (Krajewski et al., 2019). By applying similar thinking and models, Wild Dog Coffee Company can achieve the same level of consistency and quality.

1. Standardize Work Methods: Develop standardized procedures and guidelines for the espresso production process. Clearly define the steps involved, including measuring and grinding coffee, extracting espresso shots, and steaming milk. This will ensure consistency and efficiency in the production process.

2. Staff Training: Implement a comprehensive training program for all employees involved in the espresso production process. Train them on the standardized work methods, emphasizing the importance of quality, speed, and customer satisfaction. Continuously monitor and evaluate their performance to identify areas for improvement.

3. Supplier Management: Establish strong relationships with suppliers to ensure a consistent supply of high-quality coffee beans and other raw materials. Regularly review and assess suppliers based on quality, reliability, and delivery speed. Consider entering into long-term contracts with preferred suppliers to secure the necessary resources.

4. Continuous Improvement: Implement a system for continuous improvement to identify and address any inefficiencies or bottlenecks in the espresso production process. Encourage employees to provide feedback and suggestions for improvement. Regularly review and update the standardized work methods based on new insights and best practices.

The process from the customer entering the store to the moment they leave with their drink is crucial for Wild Dog Coffee. Appendix 1 provides detailed information on the process of making each espresso drink, serving as a guide for the baristas. While the time required for different orders may vary, the process duration can fluctuate, especially when customers request modifications to their beverages.

Wild Dog Coffee aims to explore several metrics to assess the quality of the process and identify potential issues. The primary metric is the time from order placement to order delivery. Additionally, customer waiting times before placing an order and from order to receiving their drink can help pinpoint delays in the process. Customer satisfaction and error rates are also important for identifying quality-related concerns. Balancing quality and speed metrics is crucial to ensure customer happiness, high revenue, and employee satisfaction.

Beverage Wait Times in Minutes
Please refer to Figure 2 in Appendix 2 for the graphical representation of beverage wait times.

The procedure for making customer beverages begins when they place their order. The cashier processes the payment and prints a ticket for the barista. In the case of online orders, payment is processed through the app, and the barista receives a ticket labeled “mobile” for preparation. The barista follows specific steps outlined in Appendix 1, which vary depending on the type of beverage. After preparation, the barista takes the beverage to the pickup station, or for mobile orders, places them in the designated area.

The espresso shot plays a vital role in Wild Dog Coffee’s process. It can be enjoyed on its own or serve as a base for various other beverages. To ensure the best tasting experience, the espresso should be weighed at approximately eight to ten grams and brewed for about 25 seconds. Maintaining a clean and dry portafilter is essential to avoid affecting the taste with residue or moisture. The extraction process is equally important, as under-extracted espresso tastes sour, while over-extracted espresso results in bitterness.

Process Change Analysis
Wild Dog Coffee analyzed the beverage process times for 50 beverages. This analysis can be applied to future stores to monitor performance. The assistant store manager of the original location suggests a target beverage delivery time of two to three minutes. If the process achieves this goal, it indicates expected performance levels. Process capability refers to a process’s ability to meet product or service specifications. The nominal value for this process is the expected two to three-minute delivery time, and the tolerance is an allowance beyond this expected outcome.

Cause and Effect Variance
To identify the causes of poor performance at Wild Dog Coffee, the six “M’s” of cause-and-effect process variance were explored. Manpower was found to be a significant factor, as a lack of employees can impact beverage delivery time and increase errors. Inadequate standardized training for baristas and the involvement of under-trained cashiers in beverage preparation also contribute to process issues. Machine-related problems arise from older machines that operate slowly or require frequent repairs. Limited supplies due to supply chain disruptions, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic, also affect the process.

Based on the cause-and-effect variance analysis, several improvements are recommended for the new store opening. Hiring more employees would address the manpower issue and allow for proper training and supervision. Increasing the number of espresso machines would help handle busy periods effectively. While supply issues cannot be fully avoided, limiting the menu slightly can mitigate ingredient shortages.

Wild Dog Coffee’s decision to open a second location reflects its existing customer base. To ensure a consistent and high-quality experience across locations, it is essential to implement the recommended changes. These improvements will contribute.


Aupiais, S. (2020, November 10). Barista basics: How to make an espresso in 14 steps. Perfect  Daily Grind. Retrieved September 10, 2022, from steps/ 

Krajewski, L. J., Malhotra, M. K., & Ritzman, L. P. (2019). Operations management: Processes and supply chains. Pearson. Retrieved from %3Bvnd.vst.idref 

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Maia, L. B. (2020, November 23). 28 different types of coffee you drink daily. Lucky Belly.  Retrieved September 4, 2022, from Supply Chains and the COVID‐19 Pandemic: A Comprehensive Framework. (2021). European Management Review, 18(3), 363–382.

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