Xerox Corporation is an American company founded in 1906 as Haloid Company. The company began as a manufacturer of photographic paper and equipment. Joseph Wilson inherited the “business from his father who was the founder of the company and propelled it to new heights” (Patnaik 47).
Wilson signed an agreement with Chester Carlson to develop Carlson’s idea of printing using the toner commercially. The technology was named Xerography. The company “changed its name to Haloid Xerox in the year 1958 and subsequently in 1961 to Xerox Corporation” (Doyle 2). Currently, the company is under the leadership of Ursula Burns, who is both the Chairman and chief executive officer. Xerox has a presence in over 180 countries worldwide, and it employs over 140,000 people.
The company deals in document management, business process solutions and software services. Xerox Company provides a multitude of products and services to its clients worldwide. They include business services, office equipment, and production equipment. The company’s dynamic nature has enabled it to survive technological changes in the industry. Xerox has made several acquisitions in its lifetime as part of strategic survival.
In the year 2010, Xerox acquired Affiliated Computer Services as part of its strategy to integrate technology into its operations. Xerox reported an annual revenue of $19 billion in the year ended 2014, and its share price at the New York Stock Exchange was going for $10 as of 24th July 2015.
What Xerox is doing
Xerox core business was to produce printing solutions for office and photography industry. Since its inception in 1906, it has dwelt on improving printing solutions and document management. The company has invented a variety of printing machines and technologies. It continues to research and come up with technology that will ensure excellent document management. Currently, Xerox provides document management solutions as a four-part system.
Managed print is one of the services that Xerox offers, and it is meant to save the user of the services up to 30% of probable printing costs. The service provides a document management solution from the printer, the movement of the material and the storage of the document.
The technological advancement has resulted in the world moving from paper dependency to soft copy operations. Xerox has invested in cloud technology as a reliable system for storing information. The company has partnered with its affiliates to develop secure clouds systems that run as part of Xerox services.
Xerox approaches its objectives through a crisis-driven strategy (Patnaik 42). The approach looks into the future and makes deductions on what problems the current processes might face. Consequently, the company is always ready for possible challenges. Xerox refers to this segment as a managed print service.
The company has a centralized print service that enables organizations to operate their documents securely. Xerox Company achieves this by assessing the needs of a particular group and coming up with a package for the specific client. Moreover, the company develops software that organizations use to convert documents from one format to another.
Under the Enterprise Content Management, Xerox has come up with a system that enables organizations to organize their information. The system works by networking all the information and relating it where it is needed. The company uses cloud technology that saves documents remotely. Xerox Company has deployed the enterprise care management staff to different departments including healthcare, manufacturing, payrolls, and banking among others.
Back office transaction processing is the fourth facet under the business process solutions. It provides services that enable organizations to achieve their administrative roles. The organizations range from private entities to government institutions.
What Xerox Manufactures
Xerox manufactures different types of office equipment that are used in everyday running of organizations. A majority of the tools are document-related and meant to manage documents in the simplest way possible. The tools include photocopiers, scanners, printers, multifunction printers and other printing technology. Xerox Company manufactures multifunction printers that consolidate different functions into one machine.
The printers can print in either black and white or in color (Doyle 2). Besides, they can trim documents, fold them, and prepare emails according to the mailing list. A majority of the Xerox Company’s equipment can be described as single-function machines. A majority of the devices that the Xerox Company manufactures come in various series.
Therefore, the company gives the clients a large pool to choose from depending on their needs (Peter 3). Other than office equipment, Xerox manufactures production equipment used in the print industry. The machine is meant to support printing personnel who need high-speed quality machines for their work. Xerox has also developed digital devices that are capable of handling a myriad of tasks at high speed.
Xerox in Ireland
In Ireland, Xerox trades under the name IBS, a Xerox Company. The company came into operation in the year 2013 after Xerox acquired IBS. Later, IBS, a Xerox company consolidated all the other operations of Xerox. Although it operates currently under the name IBS, Xerox initially commenced its operations in Ireland in 1963 as Xerox Limited. The company boasts of more than 18,000 clients, and it has offices in seven locations in the country.
Xerox Company has partnered with other manufacturers of equipment to enable it to serve its clientele in the best way possible. The outsourcing of services is a modern approach to business that allows a player to consolidate gains and minimize risks. The IBS, a Xerox company, is a satellite branch of the Xerox Corporation and is meant to consolidate Xerox’s gains in Europe. With a client base of 18,000 customers, it became necessary that Xerox combines its operations. It also necessitated bringing in other potential competitors and strategic manufacturers.
Technical Description of Experience
The writer of this report is a student on external placement at Xerox as part of the fulfillment of the academic requirement. The Student was able to gain hands-on experience by working in the manufacturing sector of the company that involved assembling of the part to make a machine.
The placement happened over a seven-week period, and the student was supposed to work in different departments. The first office handles the detrashing process. The unit receives various parts of a machine from different manufacturers. The activities of the department include testing the parts to ensure that they are sound in terms of quality. Workers in this department are tasked with the duty of ensuring that the supplied components meet the required standards.
In this case, the student, though on placement, is treated like any other employee and expected to meet the required standards. The learner is also expected to test the motherboards of the machines. The department deals with spare parts, and the student works under the supervision of a section head.
The student faced numerous challenges while working in the department. Some resistors were faulty leading to double work because the student had to retest the motherboards. Working in this department enabled the student to understand the functionalities of a Xerox motherboard, how it is assembled and tested.
The student gained knowledge on how to distinguish between functional and faulty resistors. The second week involved working in a unit that deals with the manufacture of duplex inverters. The duplex inverters are assembled and shipped to other branches as spare parts. The student had to learn the entire process of producing the inverters and the logistics of delivering them to the field engineers.
The primary challenge of working in this department is that the toner using parts require thorough scrutiny to ensure that they are fit for use. The components can easily fail to work in the case of a slight fault. Therefore, the student needed to be extra careful. The objective of working in this department was to gain experience in toner-related parts. The third week of the placement was spent in the unit that produces mechanical spares.
The student formed part of the team that handled inspection of mechanical components and repair of parts that did not meet the required standards. Besides, the student dealt with parts that needed debugging. The challenge faced in this area was discharging duties that were outside the job description. It was hard for the student to handle some processes. Consequently, the student had to rely on the experienced staff.
The fourth week was spent in the duplex manufacturing and repair unit. The placement was done on a rotational basis that saw the student revisit some departments. The learner felt that the experience gained, though invaluable, was limited to three areas. During the sixth week, the student dealt with inspection of electronic boards to ensure that they meet the required standards.
The student also manufactured mechanical spare parts based on the demand. It gave the student a chance to learn how production process is structured. The problem encountered was that production process was not consistent since it depended on orders. At times, the department was required to produce a high number of mechanical spares due to increased demand.
The student felt that the placement period was not adequate. It was hard for the student to work in multiple departments. Xerox is a big company that can provide invaluable experience to the student, therefore, the belief by the student that the placement was limited. A solution to this experience can be found in a defined working relationship between the student the company where the expectations are synchronized between the two.
Xerox is a good example of a dynamic company that has thrived under technological changes. The company has diversified and transformed in line with technology, therefore avoiding the misfortunes that befell many businesses. Xerox has evolved its operations and products by examining the clients’ present and future needs.
The company has achieved its success through continuous research and development programs. The success has also come as a result of strategic acquisitions and disposals. Whenever one of its branches fails, Xerox moves fast to dispose it before it runs into losses.
Doyle, Jon. “Xerox Authorised Agent Model Combines Global Quality and Local Expertise.” Carribean Business 43.20 (2015): 1-3. Print.
Patnaik, Rajnand. “Crisis Driven Strategy: A Case of Xerox Corporation.” Journal of Business Strategy 11.1 (2014): 42-53. Print.
Peter, Johnstone. “Xerox Plans for a Multichannel Future.” Seybold Report 14.22 (2014): 1-8. Print.