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Wednesday, 15 August 2018 19:46

Tesla Disrupting the Automotive Industry With Extreme Manufacturing

Written by Pale Blue Dot Research, Seeking Alpha




It was up to the designers to figure out how to cram as much vertically integrated production capacity as they can into the factory while at the same time having a goal of doubling the current assembly line speed of the best factories. The task backlog included such items as a certain percentage of automation and a reduced number of operations which links directly back to product designed for automation.


One of the key characteristics of Scrum are regular releases of functional iterations. We saw this when the line went through several shutdowns while process improvements were made. Successive burst rates were followed by sustained rates. Manual operations became automated and some automated operations became manual. Some robots were replaced, some were reprogrammed and all this happening because of a deliberate and strategic application of Scrum's backlog task burn down.


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What seems to be chaos and disorder are actually weekly sprints with backlog grooming that tweak and fine tune the selected strategies. We saw that with Flufferbot and the GA4 tent.


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(source: YouTube)


The tent itself was also not the first iteration of this structure as there were already three other Sprung structures already in use at Fremont with the second largest one almost half the size of GA4.


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(source: AutoGuide)


We also saw real time updates to the production process itself, including streamlining welding and testing requirements as mentioned in the roadshow article, "Tesla changed its testing regimen for the Model 3, and that's OK - Roadshow"


In short, Agile Scrum sprints lead to iterations and versions whether it's the software that runs the car, the car components themselves, or the machine that builds the machines. They all have a wishlist, a backlog of tasks to achieve that list, production sprints producing functional iterations, and a sprint review to refine the task backlog for future iterations.


Deloitte reports that a network of teams is the future of organizations. The team of teams model already exists in a Scrum of Scrums, a.k.a. Scrum at Scale. I won't go into the details of this concept, but it basically scales the Scrum methodology to the organizational level which we see Tesla doing with its layoffs, and organizational restructuring as the company itself is going through iterations as it fine tunes its backlog of organizational tasks.

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