Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Ford and Fordism

In his piece Flashlights not Bailouts, Phil Gilbert describes the classic CBD/SOA argument: standardization/rationalization/reuse.

"One of the three (Ford) is in demonstrably better shape than the other two, and it's no mystery why. Two years ago, when he took the reins of Ford, Alan Mulally identified two things that needed to change: parts costs have to go down, and engineering productivity must go up."

"Get it? The white collar workers who design the cars have to move from artisan to engineer, and they need to work together across all the company's platforms to use common parts."

I asked Phil if this was Fordism?
Phil responded thus:

"Ford used standardization of task to drive down costs. I'm suggesting 'standardization' of transparency to drive down risk."

Thus Fordism progresses from the economics of scale to the economics of governance. This fits well with the story about SOA I've been telling in this blog.

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