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BOMBASTIC!Boeing Going Through An Internal Crisis  
User currently offlineCiro From Brazil, joined Aug 1999, 662 posts, RR: 6
Posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 6996 times:

The msg below is circulating among Boeing's employees. A friend of mine, who works for the company, sent it to me. Of course, we have to assess and weight the comments, however it is worth to analyze such perspective.

Somehow spooky....


Cheers!


Ciro


---------------------



The Downfall of a Great American Airplane Company - An Insider's Perspective


Subject


Recently, there has been much attention focused on the "Boeing brain drain" that may have contributed to the February loss of Shuttle Columbia. However, most people do not realize that a similar "brain drain" is occurring within the Commercial Airplane division of Boeing.



Because of Boeing's massive layoffs and strategy of offloading design work to foreign design centers, the company has lost control of its engineering processes. The recent actions of the Boeing Company in its Commercial Airplane division are seriously jeopardizing the quality and safety of its airplanes. Hopefully, the company's current course of action will not lead to the same tragic consequences that occurred on February 1, 2003.



Our Credentials

Before we begin, we wish to establish our credentials. Since we are current Boeing employees, we obviously don't want to give information that can positively identify us.



This paper was composed by a group of aerospace design engineers with many years at the Boeing Company. We have been involved in several new airplane programs across a variety of functions and have intimate knowledge of the inner workings of Engineering at Boeing.



We are "in the trenches" every day, involved in the nuts-and-bolts business of designing airplanes. We have a unique and in-depth insider's view of the damage being sown at the Boeing Company by Phil Condit and his cohorts.



Introduction


During the past several years, Boeing Commercial Airplanes has been offloading its design engineering work to foreign "design centers". American engineers and technical designers are being laid off by the hundreds while Russian engineers are quietly hired at the Boeing Design Center in Moscow. Many of the Russian engineers are not nearly as experienced as the American engineers being laid off. Engineering layoffs have cut so deeply into Boeing's talent pool that knowledge has been irretrievably lost. And the layoffs continue.



Soon Boeing may reach (if it hasn't already) a "point of no return" where irreversible damage has been done to the company's ability to design and build safe airplanes, even with its so-called "risk-sharing partners".



Boeing's senior management has often stated that they are not willing to "bet the company" on another new airplane program as they famously did with the 747. They are pursuing a strategy of accumulating a network of "risk-sharing partners" so Boeing can concentrate on its core competency of "large scale systems integration."



We are willing to state that Boeing's management is "betting the company" on a misguided and ridiculous outsourcing plan that is gutting the company of its hard-won knowledge base and human assets. The safety and quality of Boeing airplanes is at jeopardy because of the foolhardy actions of Boeing's senior management, and even the hint of safety and quality issues with Boeing's airplanes can have disastrous results for its Commercial Airplane business.



The former executives of McDonnell-Douglas (which arguably as a company was, in the end, a complete failure in the design and manufacture of commercial aircraft) have taken control of Boeing and seem determined to gut the commercial airplane business - all in the name of "increasing shareholder value". Harry Stonecipher, John McDonnell and Mike Sears, along with Phil Condit and Alan Mulally are destroying what was very recently a vital, dominant American company. These men will probably enjoy massive short-term gains in the value of their stock options, but there is a price; the loss of the long-term viability of Boeing in the commercial aircraft business. We have to look back less than a decade to see where these men are leading Boeing - to the once glorious McDonnell-Douglas Commercial Aircraft division which has since faded into oblivion.



The design and manufacture of commercial aircraft has been a lucrative business for the United States for many decades. The aerospace business has consistently been the largest exporter in the United States economy. Boeing is willingly and recklessly giving this business away to its future foreign competitors.



It is time Boeing's practices become public knowledge.



Some Perspective


It is important to remember that Boeing's commercial aircraft business is a bit different from the standard manufacturing company. Boeing design airplanes - not washing machines, toasters or clock radios.



Every day, millions of people entrust their lives and the lives of their friends and family to the quality of Boeing airplanes. Every day, your and our husbands and wives, sons and daughters, fathers and mothers climb aboard a 727, 737, 747, 757, 767 or 777 with faith that experienced Boeing engineers did their job well. Although many airplane passengers pray to God for a safe flight, it is often Boeing engineers who, with their skill and knowledge, have the power to grant that prayer.



Currently, Boeing is making severe cuts in its design engineering staff. The cost savings probably look great on paper. But the real question is how do these cuts affect a company in which airplanes are designed? Airplanes - on which millions of people fly each year. Airplanes - to which we entrust our lives every time we fly. Airplanes - that can experience catastrophic failure due to engineering errors.



Due to their current strategy of off-loading design work to inexperienced engineers and laying off their own highly experienced employees, Boeing management has created an environment where these errors are much more likely to occur.



The most telling statement about the trend of engineering at Boeing is this statement, which is heard more and more often from fellow engineers: "After seeing how engineering is done here today, I'm afraid to fly on the next new Boeing airplane."



Some Facts About Airplane Design


It is obvious that an airplane, especially a large commercial aircraft, is a very complicated machine to design and build. What the general public does not understand is that, however difficult they think it is to design and build an airplane, their belief is not one-fiftieth as complicated as the reality.



It takes many years of experience to learn the intricacies of airplane design. Not only does an engineer need to understand how to design detail parts, assemblies and installations, but also where the parts are manufactured, how the parts are manufactured and how they are put together. Engineers are required to understand lead-times and scheduling to make sure drawings are released on time to support vendor requirements. The responsibilities of an engineer are immense.



In addition, engineers need to control the configuration of the airplane. The parts that go on an airplane depends on many factors:



1) The base model (737, 747, 757, 767, 777)

2) The derivative (737-700, 737-800, 737-900, 757-200, 757-300, 777-200ER, 777-300, 777-300ER, 777-200LR)

3) Standard options (Small cargo door, large cargo door, overwing exits, in-flight entertainment systems)

4) Customer-specific options (Seats, purser stations, the color of the carpet)



There are literally millions of possible configurations. Knowing which parts go on which airplanes is a very important part of an engineer's job.



The systems Boeing has implemented to control airplane configuration (as part of the DCAC/MRM effort) are immensely complex and constantly changing. There are many technical designers and engineers who spend large portions of their time just learning and understanding these systems. Most engineers only have a cursory knowledge of these systems and rely on local "experts". The problem is that these local "experts" are becoming fewer and farther between and their numbers are diminishing rapidly as layoffs continue.



Boeing is lucky that the FAA does not have an audit planned in the near future.



The Offloading of Boeing's Design Engineering


The key to Boeing's success has never been its plants, tools and buildings, but its superior engineering and its willingness to take calculated risks. Both of these assets are disappearing rapidly.



Although much emphasis has been put on such manufacturing concepts as "lean manufacturing" and "just-in-time inventory", it is important to realize that regardless of the efficiencies of the manufacturing process, an airplane or any product cannot succeed without quality engineering design. In the past, Boeing's elite engineering corps has met the challenge and produced the world's best commercial aircraft.



Currently, Boeing is rabidly pursuing a strategy of offloading engineering design work to overseas "design centers". This process began more than a decade ago with "design transfers" to the Japanese (Kawasaki, Mitsubishi and Fuji Heavy Industries). It continues today at a more rapid and frightening pace.



Boeing Design Center - Moscow


Currently, the fastest growing off-load "design center" is located in Moscow, Russia. There are around 350 engineers employed at this center. They are designing primary and secondary structures, interiors, floors and other systems.



There appears to be a common misconception that Russia is a land of promise where the streets are paved with PhD aerospace engineers begging for jobs. The belief is that not only do these brilliant engineers have doctorates, but they have decades of top-notch aircraft design experience. In addition, they are willing to work for 20 to 25% of the pay that American engineers receive. How can Boeing lose?



The reality is that BDC Moscow is manned with few experienced engineers and many, many greenhorns - inexperienced engineers who have graduated within the past few years. Boeing engineers are being pressured to off-load design work to Moscow - to these legions of inexperienced engineers.



Even if we assume that all of the Russian engineers have PhDs and are experienced, ask yourself the following questions:



1) How and where did they gain aircraft design experience? On what new Russian airplane programs have they cut their teeth in the past 10-15 years?

2) How do Russian commercial aircraft compare to the quality, efficiency and safety of Boeing's airplanes?

3) Which leads to the final question: Based on Russian commercial aviation history, do we really want to fly a commercial airplane designed by Russian engineers?



The Russian engineers have to be given some credit. They are nice guys, likeable and smart with relevant college degrees, but they lack several important traits:



1) Experience designing airplanes.

2) The ability to speak English well enough to have an in-depth technical conversation.

3) The ability to take initiative and to come up with creative solutions.



This final point is an important one. Decades of communist rule have apparently made it difficult for some Russians to make decisions. They want to be told what to do, down to the most minute detail.



Designing a new airplane with the Russians is like working with a bunch of new college hires - except these new hires don't speak English very well - if at all! Are there any volunteers for who wants to fly on their class project?



All that seems to matter to Boeing's senior management is that Russian engineers are significantly cheaper than American ones. It is important to note that although the Russians are cheaper, a number of significant inefficiencies are introduced:



1) The language barrier

a. It is difficult enough discussing technical issues with an American engineer, let alone with a Russian who has only taken 3 months of English classes.

2) Time zones

a. The only way to communicate with BDC Moscow is via e-mail, conference calls and video conferences. The problem is that there is only a 1 or 2 hour window of opportunity to hold conference calls or video conferences.

b. Because of the brevity and ineffectiveness of conference calls, Boeing engineers waste hours and even days trying to resolve issues via e-mail - when it would only take 10 minutes to walk to the next cube to explain to Phil what needs to be done.

3) Physical distance

a. Documents take days to reach Moscow. Once again, if the work was done within Boeing, it would only take 10 minutes to walk to Harry's desk and drop off the document.

b. CATIA models need to be transferred to Russia in a process that takes hours. If the work was done locally, a model could be transferred almost instantaneously.



Out-sourcing has made a complicated process exponentially more complicated. In the engineering world, complicated processes are known to produce one thing consistently - errors.



The initial results on the quality of work from BDC are frightening. Much of their work on recent programs has had to be completely re-done. Changes that were supposed to be made aren't made properly, and changes that shouldn't have been made are widespread. Luckily, (until recently) there have been enough experienced Boeing engineers to catch these errors. This is no longer the case after the last painful round of layoffs. It is only a matter of time before a potentially dangerous error slips by.



Yet another concern is that the majority of Russian engineers working at the Boeing Design Center in Moscow are contract (temporary) employees who are overseen by a much smaller number of Boeing direct employees. What keeps these engineers from remaining loyal to Boeing? There is a very real threat that Boeing will face a situation in the near future where their domestic (American) talent has been ravaged and the Russian engineers move on to other opportunities (such as contracting overseas for much higher salaries or within Moscow at Airbus' newly opened Moscow Design Center).



Is it really a wise business decision to hand over proprietary knowledge to foreign engineers or even worse, foreign contract engineers? Common sense would say no. Phil and Harry seem to think that this is the way to "increase shareholder value".



We think that they are destroying the company.


Airbus in Moscow (and Puget Sound?)


It wouldn't be fair to omit the fact that Airbus has also opened a Design Center in Moscow. However, the main difference between Airbus and Boeing is that Airbus is smart and doesn't intend to have the Russians do primary systems and structures design, instead limiting them to interiors work. Airbus isn't willing to give away the "crown jewels".



In fact, there is a large contingent of Boeing engineers who would welcome the opening of an Airbus Design Center in the Puget Sound region. What better way for Airbus to "stick it to Boeing" than to open a Design Center in Boeing's back yard and poach a large number of highly talented aerospace engineers who would willingly jump ship?



Many of us would be sorely tempted to work at the Airbus Design Center - Seattle. At least with Airbus, we would be working for management that makes rational long-term business decisions.



Boeing's "Core Competency": Large-Scale Systems Integration


Boeing has stated that they want to concentrate on their "core competency", which Phil Condit says is "large-scale systems integration".



Integration takes place at the individual engineer level, which is where Boeing is cutting. The front-line engineer is where the rubber meets the road, but Boeing has made it clear that engineers are merely "costs" to the company, not assets.



The relevant questions to ask here are:



How can Boeing hope to successfully be a "large-scale systems integrator" if they don't have enough experienced, qualified engineers to do the integration?
If Boeing's engineers no longer understand the technical aspects of the airplane's design and manufacturability, how can they integrate?
At What Point Do Boeing's Suppliers Decide They No Longer Need Boeing?


We have heard that Phil Condit's perfect vision for Boeing is where all of the design and manufacturing work is offloaded. Meanwhile, Boeing (consisting of Phil and his secretary) sits in a penthouse office in Chicago at the top of the pyramid and collects a fat profit margin, thus "enhancing shareholder value". As comic as this may seem, it is probably not far from the truth.



Boeing is throwing away thousands of irreplaceable engineers while giving away to its vendors knowledge based on decades of empirical data from Boeing's countless tests and studies. This knowledge, both in the Design Manuals and in the engineers' heads is Boeing's competitive advantage.



Boeing is training and arming its future competitors.



The Boeing vision is that eventually the "partners" will design and manufacture body sections, already "stuffed" with the required systems (electrical wire bundles, hydraulics systems, insulation, etc). All of these activities would be coordinated and "integrated" by a small staff of Boeing engineers. The body sections would then be shipped to Everett (or Wichita or Long Beach or Fort Worth), where a small group of Boeing assembly workers would button the sections together.



In all honesty, does this deserve the lion's share of the profits? How much better can the Japanese complete this function in Japan?



At what point do Boeing's suppliers decide that they no longer need Boeing?



JAI (consisting of Mitsubishi, Kawasaki and Fuji Heavy Industries) is more than capable to do the manufacturing. In addition, they can do the stress analysis and design work. Boeing has spent the last 10 years handing over their computer "templates" for stress analysis - along with books containing all of Boeing's hard-won knowledge of fatigue analysis, structural damage tolerance and corrosion prevention, which was accumulated over decades of testing and in-service experience.



If JAI is capable of doing both the design and manufacturing of airplane structural components, Rolls Royce, Pratt and Whitney and GE provide the engines, Rockwell-Collins provides the avionics and interior components are BFE (Buyer Furnished Equipment), what does Boeing bring to the table? Boeing's doing the easy part! Why would these companies allow Boeing to sit at the top of the pyramid and take the fattest profits? (Hint: The answer isn't "Boeing's core competency of large-scale systems integration".)



Employee Morale



How can current employee morale, especially among Boeing engineers, be described? There is no hyperbole too outlandish to describe how low morale has fallen.



There is a strong adversarial feeling that has developed among engineers against management - especially upper management. Engineers believe that management would like nothing more than to eliminate the entire Boeing engineering department. Perhaps they're right.



There is a pervasive feeling of doom and fatalism. Engineers believe that there is no future for them at Boeing. The engineers with 20 or more years at Boeing are stoically waiting for that golden day when they will retire and wash their hands of the mess that Phil Condit and Harry Stonecipher have created.



It is frightening to see how few experienced engineers are left in the company. When the company is forced to bring in contractors to do high-level design work, it is indicative of a major problem. There are not enough people left to do even a small development program. How will Boeing handle the 7E7?



In addition, Boeing is handing out WARN notices to direct employees while these same employees are surrounded by on-site Russian and Japanese engineers!



Performance Management


One of Boeing's criteria in its "Performance Management" is to measure how front-line

management and lead engineers are offloading work to Moscow. The more work the lead engineers and managers are willing to offload and the bigger the smile on their faces as they do so, the more likely they will not be laid-off but will be promoted and given raises.



Can you imagine it - having your career depend on how willing you are to give your job away and to train your replacement in the process? Even if you are cheerful in supporting the offloading of engineering work, your reward may still be a WARN notice. How's that for a morale-builder? How's that for an environment in which airplanes are designed?



The 7E7 and Future Airplane Programs


It can arguably be stated that Boeing has cut their engineering staff so deeply that they do not have enough remaining talent to tackle a new airplane program.



It is well-known that Boeing's engineering staff is greying. Many of the engineers are within 10-15 years of retirement age - and most of those are counting the years, months, days, hours and minutes until that magical time. Trust us when we say that there has already been a huge loss of "tribal knowledge" that can never be recovered. In 5-10 years, when these greying engineers begin to retire, the resulting knowledge loss may well prove fatal to Boeing Commercial Airplanes.



Boeing is rapidly approaching, if they have not already passed, the "Point of No Return". The layoffs have been so deep that knowledge and engineering ability has been irrecoverably lost.



The Effect of Development Cost on Product Quality


There were a series of lessons supposedly learned from the fantastic success of the 777 airplane program. A tremendous amount of money was spent developing this airplane, much of it on trail-blazing new techniques such as:



?? Concurrent Product Design

?? Digital Pre-Assembly/Mockup

?? Co-location of personnel (i.e. designers, stress analysts, manufacturing engineers)

?? Integration of customers into the design process



This "front-loading" of cost, where money was spent on the engineering/ development of the airplane, paid off spectacularly. The rework in the factory dropped precipitously, saving millions in ongoing manufacturing costs. The number of rejection tags dropped by over 50%. The factory said that building the 777 was like putting together Tinker Toys.



Today, the 777 is one of Boeing's two best-selling airplanes.



However, now Harry Stonecipher and John McDonnell want to cut development costs on the 7E7 to 40% of 777 levels. Do they expect to get an airplane of similar quality to the 777 for that price?



Engineers are already forced to make unpleasant compromises with their design because of the shocking scarcity of resources - compromises that threaten the quality, safety and performance of the airplane.



We believe that Boeing Commercial Airplanes is headed down the same path as McDonnell-Douglas. Tight-fisted executives dole out miserly portions of budget to "save money" and "increase shareholder value". What they end up with are inferior products that fail in the marketplace.



If proof is required, ask yourself: "What is left of McDonnell-Douglas' commercial aircraft business?"



The 717.



Isn't that proof enough of where Boeing is being led?



Are we willing to entrust the future of Boeing's Commercial Aircraft business to the same people who destroyed McDonnell-Douglas?



Conclusion


The Boeing Company is headed down a dark and dangerous path. It is heading down this path at a reckless pace with little regard to long-term consequences. High-level executives are making decisions that, on paper, may look promising, but are in truth destroying the company. The safety and quality of Boeing airplanes is at jeopardy because of the foolhardy actions of Boeing's senior management.



There has been little discussion about this in the media. Perhaps this story is not newsworthy. However, everyone with whom we have spoken has been...let's say "shocked" (although that does not do it justice)...when told of what is going on. We am not prone to exaggeration. We are engineers. We live and breathe logic and facts. We are witnessing first-hand the destructive effects of Phil Condit's "Vision 2016". There may not be a Boeing Commercial Aircraft Company in 2016 because of Phil Condit.



What has been described herein is truth. We can only hope it also turns out to be "newsworthy".



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



The fastest way to become a millionaire in the airline business is to start as a billionaire.
48 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineGreg From United Kingdom, joined May 2005, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 6851 times:

No offense, but that's written by some very disgruntled employees.
To believe it, would show a very high degree of ignornance.

I'll leave someone with more time to go through and refute most of the hogwash....


User currently offlineBeltwaybandit From United States of America, joined Mar 2003, 495 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 6816 times:

A passionate argument made by persons with a passionate interest in protecting their jobs. I truly take offense (and find unprofessional) the suggestions that safety is being compromised. Any employee making that suggestion could and should be terminated on the spot. To say that, you must be willing to take down the entire company -- that will not save many jobs.

User currently offlineJGPH1A From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks ago) and read 6790 times:

Some sadly familiary complaints there, related to outsourcing generally - one day soon I hope somebody will write a chapter in a Management Handbook entitled "You Pay Peanuts - You Get Monkeys". Outsourcing may save money in the short-term but time and time again it has been shown in all sorts of IT environments, that the product suffers and so ultimately does the customer - knowledge and experience are as valuable resources as any, and like any valuable resource, it doesn't come cheap.

User currently offlineOkie From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 2854 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks ago) and read 6779 times:

Sounds like an engineer about to reach menopause.

User currently offlineCodeshare From Poland, joined Sep 2002, 1854 posts, RR: 1
Reply 5, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks ago) and read 6749 times:

Well, it's just like in the movies: cut costs and a tragedy will happen. Ihope it won't.

Russan engineers are not that bad, but Airbus were smarter. And they are going to keep being smarter.

Outsorcing and cost cutting is a common practice in many companies today. Perhaps the business consulting is bad ( hello Andersen ?).



How much A is there is Airliners Net ? 0 or nothing ?
User currently offlineGigneil From United States of America, joined Nov 2002, 16345 posts, RR: 86
Reply 6, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks ago) and read 6730 times:

I'll leave someone with more time to go through and refute most of the hogwash....

Someone with more time likely will not have any relevant information with which to refute the "hogwash"... the document was well written, and clearly documents individual elements which are excellent points. Unless you personally work for BCA, or anyone else here, my guess is there's not a single one of us qualified to refute or validate any of the contents.

To believe it, would show a very high degree of ignornance.

It shows a high degree of ignorance to dismiss it out of hand. Despite none of us being well versed in any of the matters discussed, we know what the ex-MCDD execs have said over and over, and we see the same sorts of trends in each of our respective industries from our respective management staff - as well as market pressures and the state of the economy. Its all extremely believable, and I'd go so far as to classify it as likely - unless someone else at BCA can provide an opposing view.

A passionate argument made by persons with a passionate interest in protecting their jobs. I truly take offense (and find unprofessional) the suggestions that safety is being compromised.

You sound like a good company man there, BeltwayBandit. If a core team of engineers is convinced that safety is being compromised, one would think they have a moral and personal obligation to sing it from the rooftops, not just soldier on like little worker ants. In fact, your suggestion of the opposite is offensive on a much more basic level.

Its like working for an automotive manufacturer and understanding fully that there are glaring flaws in the vehicle's braking system - one that could kill a family of 5. Your job and the wellbeing of the company should be your absolute last concern - if its one at all.

I would never permit my name to be associated with work that I feel is subpar, and clearly neither would these engineers. That's almost the definition of professionalism.

To say that, you must be willing to take down the entire company -- that will not save many jobs.

Sometimes you have to burn the village to save it.

This forum spends a lot of time complaining about American jobs and the export of work to other countries - now when American workers at one of our favorite companies are starting to feel the impacts of it, we want to turn a blind eye?

N


User currently offlineDanny From Poland, joined exactly 12 years ago today! , 3505 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks ago) and read 6658 times:

Sounds like a frustrate who desperately tries to save his job. All based on ridiculous assumption that American engineers are better that foreign ones.

User currently offlineGigneil From United States of America, joined Nov 2002, 16345 posts, RR: 86
Reply 8, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks ago) and read 6625 times:

All based on ridiculous assumption that American engineers are better that foreign ones.

No. Do not try to warp what was said. They specifically itemized the shortcomings of the engineers being hired by the BDC, and not a single one of them was their nationality.

N


User currently offlineNa From Germany, joined Dec 1999, 10371 posts, RR: 11
Reply 9, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks ago) and read 6616 times:

That shit happens everywhere because labour-costs are simply to high in many western countries.

It sounds like some people afraid of losing their job with no positive perspective left try to make a desperate move.
What´s written in there may to some extend be frustration, but looking at the world as it is today there´s some truth in it: product quality is deteriorating if you let unexperienced youngsters do what professionals did before. You can see it in the car business already: Quality goes down.
Experience doesn´t necessary mean high quality, it sometimes even comes with lack of will for innovation and protecting the Status Quo, but experience is part of superiority.
Young, fresh spirit isn´t the right recipe for everything. And the outsourcing of such a key business out of the country is a very bad sign, a sign of despair of the Boeing managers.

It´s very sad what´s happening at Boeing these days. And the target to "save 40%" on developing the next product 7E7 doesn´t make a future passenger confident that high reliability and thorough testing is no.1 on the job.


User currently offlineOsteogenesis From Germany, joined May 2003, 647 posts, RR: 2
Reply 10, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks ago) and read 6612 times:

I totally agree with you Gigneil,

I also work as an engineer, and I know that the gap between engineering and management is growing bigger all the time. Management often treat engineers as easily replaceable employees. They many times don’t understand the complexity of engineering complicated products.

Today many companies are run buy managers how don’t have the foggiest notion of their products, and the complexity involved.

And it seems that this is happening in a big scale at Boeing.


User currently offlineGreg From United Kingdom, joined May 2005, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (10 years 7 months 3 weeks ago) and read 6547 times:

If you read through the bullshit, it's clearly a labor issue. Full stop.
Engineers are upset that the 'next big thing' out of BCAC is going to be largely outsourced to several nations (a la Airbus). It won't take three times as many engineers to develop the 7e7 compared to the 777. Clearly, they are setting up how unsafe it will be in order to protect their union jobs. It's a typical union tactic.

Shame on them.

And for the record, that diatribe is hardly well written.


User currently offlineModernArt From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (10 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6469 times:

Nothing to add, other than agreeing with Greg 100%.

User currently offlineTravellin'man From United States of America, joined May 2001, 530 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (10 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6433 times:

I agree with Gigneil and Osteogenesis.

This is hardly whining. If you believe that a handful of individuals are not capable of taking down a company in the long run for their own short term profit, you need to study your history again. Industry has fled the U.S. not simply because of "higher labor costs" and other cliche'd arguments, but because of a lack of commitment and investment. Steel for example didn't have to leave the U.S. the way it did in the 70's and 80's. The people running the show simply wanted to make more money by doing less. So, no R+D, no desire to stay competitive, only a big cashing out. American industry has a habit of shall we say getting lazy. Look at the cars we produce! The Japanese have been ahead of us since the 50's when they voluntarily included things like safety belts, reduced gas mileage, and today, fuel hybrid cars! The big 3 in Detroit never really wanted to compete with them because a) people don't buy cars just for value, and so they can be convinced into buying anything, even if it is inferior, and more importantly b) it would have meant reinventing in their infrastructure, which would have drained their short term profit.

Yes, we risk seeing the same in comercial aircraft,as this memo highlights.

Again if you think a handful of individuals are not capable of gutting a company worth billions at the expense of many employees, among others, I have one word for you:

ENRON.



It is not enough to be rude; one must also be incorrect.
User currently offlineCiro From Brazil, joined Aug 1999, 662 posts, RR: 6
Reply 14, posted (10 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6353 times:

What I found interesting is not the potential job-loss, but the fact that key skills are being transferred to sub-contractors and, eventually, having them against Boeing itself as competitors. But it is hard to believe the company would be that naive while undertaking such strategy.


The fastest way to become a millionaire in the airline business is to start as a billionaire.
User currently offlineGreg From United Kingdom, joined May 2005, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (10 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6332 times:

Having witnessed first hand issues like these coming up at arbitration meetings...I'll stand by my original comments.

Every union in the world is using Worldcom and Enron of examples on how not to trust management. It makes it almost too easy.

Those with half a brain see right through it.

Please, you guys, it reads like a friggin chain letter for heaven's sake! It's written for the lowest common denominator.


User currently offlineCedarjet From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 7948 posts, RR: 54
Reply 16, posted (10 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6328 times:

If this is true, Boeing are finished. They're never going to finish the Dreamliner (what a STUPID name!), never mind come up with a competitor to the A320 series or A380.

Why Boeing would keep any of the McDD managers after the merger is a mystery. Look at what happened there. Amazing how history is repeating itself, and within a decade!

What a waste.



fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
User currently offlineIslandHopper From United States of America, joined Feb 2003, 327 posts, RR: 2
Reply 17, posted (10 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 6289 times:

This inside "statement" has LABOR UNION written all over it.

I've got news for them...if they accepted competitive salaries instead of organizing and demanding almost twice what engineers at other US companies make (according to a friend who's an engineer at Boeing), then I guarantee all those jobs would have stayed right here in the USA!

Unions are a killer of American jobs. Steel industry, auto industry, and now the airplane industry. Such a shame.


User currently offlineDanny From Poland, joined exactly 12 years ago today! , 3505 posts, RR: 2
Reply 18, posted (10 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 6153 times:

Islandhopper - great point "unions are a killer of ... jobs" not only in USA - in every developed country.

Daniel


User currently offlineCedarjet From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 7948 posts, RR: 54
Reply 19, posted (10 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 6133 times:

Unions may be a killer of jobs (Eastern AL et al) but imagine where workers would be without them. Believe me, there has to be a mechanism in place to stop workers being abused and taken advantage of.


fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
User currently offlineKL808 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 1582 posts, RR: 2
Reply 20, posted (10 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 6076 times:

this is a perfect case of GLOBALIZATION, boeing contracts engineers from other countries which are paid WAY less than there american counterparts, I do have to object that the russians have no skill in building airplanes, I bet they have just as good engineers with enough experience over there.

drew



AMS-LAX-MNL
User currently offlineBeltwaybandit From United States of America, joined Mar 2003, 495 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (10 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 5976 times:

Gigneil writes: If a core team of engineers is convinced that safety is being compromised, one would think they have a moral and personal obligation to sing it from the rooftops, not just soldier on like little worker ants. In fact, your suggestion of the opposite is offensive on a much more basic level.

It's hard to disagree with that. However, the next new Boeing aircraft to carry passengers will probably not roll out of the hangar for several years from now. Safety is not so great a concern at this point; and there are many avenues to pursue (including the FAA, JAA and others) before making a public rant discrediting your own company. By then, however, their jobs might be toast.

Also, if you are willing to "burn the village" to save it, and if you are truly worried about safety, then the writer is morally and personally obligated to take responsibility and credit for the statements simply to give those statements the credibility necessary to save the lives about which they are so worried. Anonymity shows a lack of conviction that makes me question the motives.


[Edited 2003-09-08 20:58:37]

User currently offlineGigneil From United States of America, joined Nov 2002, 16345 posts, RR: 86
Reply 22, posted (10 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 5895 times:

I don't disagree - in order to claim the moral high ground, one does have to identify oneself and take the consequences of that action.

N


User currently offlineDulles From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 80 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (10 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 5779 times:

I do not see anything BOMBASTIC about it. Offshoring is a natural process, like it or not. If a company is able to pay 5 time less for the same job, it will, do not have any doubts about it, and there is no easy way to stop the process. I cannot see how by eliminating unions it would be possible to make the salaries of the US engineers both competitive on the global market (that is, 75% lower) and satisfactory for the engineers at the same time. One of the greatest advantages of the market economy is its self-regulation; this is just one of its implications. Too bad for the Boeing engineers, of course, but, maybe, it will make Boeing planes a little more competitive with Airbus...

Dulles


User currently offlineArtsyman From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 4745 posts, RR: 35
Reply 24, posted (10 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 5722 times:

I would agree with Greg that this is pure hype, labor fighting talk. Further more it is just a continuation of the monkeys that were cutting cables in the 737 systems a few years ago. Any idiot that cuts cables and endangers lives to make a point, doesn't deserve to have their opinions heard.



It is interesting that the Pro-Airbus brigade are giving this article loads of authenticity, and the Boeing lovers are not. Good to see Bipartisan voting


25 Prebennorholm : We will have to wait a little and see the validity of this document. If the coming days show a voluntary and violent outroar from a vast majority of t
26 Ruscoe : Lets look at the facts. Despite the "brain drain" Boeing produce far more sophisticated aircraft than any European or Russian Corporation. Admittedly
27 Artsyman : Almost every company outsources things, including airbus. This is why some things get built in Toulouse, some in Britain, some in Germany etc etc
28 BoingGoingGone : Maybe you all should get to work instead of spending time thinking up a freakin' memo that long. Go build your 7E7 and shut the heck up. We all have g
29 Midway2airtran : I agree with KL808, nothing but Globalization, I doubt it will effect the products much, if any, might even improve them through different points of v
30 Goose : Unions may be a killer of jobs (Eastern AL et al) but imagine where workers would be without them. Believe me, there has to be a mechanism in place to
31 MITaero : From the inside, this is BS.. probably just some disgruntled employees. It is not 'circulating' among Boeing employees. Most people at Boeing would te
32 Prebennorholm : Artsyman, you are wrong. The EADS design and mfg. facilities in Spain, Germany and Britain are all "inhouse" even if the EADS HQ is physically placed
33 AvObserver : This is all VERY ominous and well within the realm of possibility (the analogy to the U.S. 'Big 3' automakers is a good one) but it's presumptuous to
34 Bd1959 : I can certainly see the cause for concern if this is a genuine memo - I can also see why some of you doubt it's authenticity, citing Unions; as Preben
35 NoUFO : This letter is written like a tabloid, thus ruining the credibility of the author(s). Admittedly, I'm not very well informed on details causing MDD to
36 Polnebmit : Some pretty disgruntled Boeing Employees, all I can say. Face it, it's the result of GLOBALIZATION. It has it's good things, and it has it BAD things.
37 Tavong : Well i really don't know, is difficult to see who has the reason in such theme but in my opinion the Union is not very smart on get that material outs
38 Klaus : I´d be very careful to dismiss it just like that. It appears largely consistent with the publicly announced goals and trends within BCA; And as alarm
39 Tekelberry : Probably written by union employees who bash their company yet still demand high wage and unlimited benefits.
40 CanadianNorth : Well IF this is true, then I think some bigshots at Boeing are really digging a hole that they may not be able to get out of. Local folks often cost m
41 Post contains images Luisinho : Hii folks... This trend is very hot... burns like hell ehee Well, i have some friends working in seatle, and what they say is the same wrote on that m
42 Rongotai : The motives of the writers are irrelevant. So are their value judgments. The only relevant question concerns which of their statements of fact are ind
43 Delta-flyer : Regardless of the writer's motives, the fundamental issues are true. What we don't know for sure is the degree to which Boeing will compromise its abi
44 Mirrodie : didn't even read the thread. Sorry but I got disgruntled when I read the completely pointless heading BomBastic. I mean, C'mon, what the heck was the
45 Emmett99 : "We will have to wait a little and see the validity of this document. If the coming days show a voluntary and violent outroar from a vast majority of
46 Planemaker : From what I have gathered, there is a significant cultural divide between Boeing engineers and ex-MDD management that are now in BCA. The managers are
47 BoingGoingGone : Living proof that Boeing outsourcing is valid: 717-200 CONSTRUCTION Boeing subcontracts the manufacture of aircraft components and subassemblies to ae
48 Gigneil : Bombastic means written in a grandiose way - which the memo clearly was. The title is accurate. N
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