Case 10: Unsafe for Children: Mattel’s Toy Recalls and Supply Chain Management
1. How should Mattel evaluate the decision to contract out its manufacturing to offshore firms? How should the risks of contracting be weighed against the benefits of lower-cost production?
2. What procedures did Mattel have in place to ensure the safety of its products? Why were these procedures insufficient to prevent defective products? What procedures do you recommend?
3. Who is ultimately responsible for ensuring the safety of imported toys in the U.S.? What is Mattel’s responsibility? How about the Chinese manufacturers and the U.S. and Chinese regulatory agencies?
These are individual assignments. Students should write these cases completely independent of other students in the class. Secondary sources, however, can be used and should be properly cited. (See the discussion on citations above.) Students should answer the questions indicated for the case on the syllabus. The write-ups should be no more than two pages double-spaced.