Trentware plc is a medium-sized pottery manufacturer which is based in the English Potteries. The company has fared badly over the last 10 years mainly as a result of Japanese competition, and recently this has led to major changes at the senior management level. The new Managing Director is determined to increase the company’s market share, and you are a member of the ambitious new management team which intends to extend the company’s range of tableware designs. Trentware’s immediate objective is to launch a new high-quality product for the Christmas market in 18 months’ time. Over 30 possible designs have been subjected to both technical analysis (to assess their production implications) and extensive market research. As a result of this analysis, the number of potential designs has now been winnowed down to six. Some of these designs are thought to offer more risk than others because of changes in fashion, similarities to competing products and possible production problems. Now one design has to be selected from the six remaining. Risk analysis has been applied to each of these six designs and some of the main results are given below:

(a) You have been asked to explain to a colleague, who is unfamiliar with risk analysis, how these results are likely to have been derived. Draft some notes for your colleague and include in your notes an evaluation of the usefulness of the technique.

(b) Compare the risk analysis results for the six designs and discuss how a decision could be made between them.


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