Using Locally And Organically Raised Food Reports Examples
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BUSINESS PROCESS ANALYSIS REPORT ON CHIPOTLE MEXICAN GRILL
Businesses are more than just the summations of their processes. However, it is undeniable that processes play a crucial role in either the success or failure of a business. A business process is simply the systematic method of accomplishing a company’s vision/mission through a set of activities (Biazzo 2000). This analysis report will be focusing on the set of activities or the business process of Chipotle Mexican Grill, a chain of fast casual restaurants that specialize in Mexican food (O’Reilly 2012). Three of its business processes will be discussed, analyzed, and mapped using relationship and cross-functional maps. These business processes include the selection of ingredients, food preparation, and food distribution.
Among these three processes, the report will give a more in-depth look into the first one, which is the selection of ingredients. This more detailed analysis will include an identification of the tightness and dependence between processes, the distinguishing of bottlenecks, an evaluation of its service blueprinting, and an assessment of the process measurement. It will also include concrete ways on how exactly the corporation can improve on the areas that will be tackled.
1. The Organization
The organization that this business process analysis report will focus on is Chipotle Mexican Grill. It is a chain of fast casual restaurants that specialize in authentic and organic Mexican food such as burritos, tacos, burrito bowls, and salads. To date, it has over 1,600 branch restaurants all across the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom (O’Reilly 2012). The reason for choosing this organization is because it is one of the most popular and highly commended fast casual restaurants in the United States due to its strong business model and impressive brand image (Stevens and Lunsford 2014). However, despite its admirable success, there is still room for improvement within the organization. This is why it was chosen for this analysis report: to show that no business is impervious to flaws.
Chipotle’s founder, Steve Ells, came up with the organization’s philosophy of “Food With Integrity” (Chipotle n.d., Food with integrity). This mantra refers to Chipotle’s commitment to ensuring that the food they provide the customers are made from the very best ingredients. And for Chipotle Mexican Grill, the best ingredients are organic and “raised with respect for the animals, the environment, and the farmers” (Chipotle n.d., Food with integrity). At the same time, they still aim to provide quick and efficient service.
1.2 Target Market
The target market of Chipotle Mexican Grill are the millennial consumers. These are young adults, aged 18 to 24, who are college educated, environmentally conscious, tech savvy, and socially aware (Friedman and Roeder 2012). In addition to this, the target market also consists of mostly Caucasians in urban and suburban areas.
Minimizing the use of GMOs and preservatives
Preparing the food by hand to ensure fresh quality
Keeping the menu simple
Depending on a quick assembly line
Creating restaurants with a sustainable design
2. Business Process Identification
An organization’s business process refers to the set of interrelated and step-by- step activities that, in the end, result in the achievement of the organization’s vision/mission statement (Biazzo 2000). Chipotle Mexican Grill itself has multiple processes within their organization but this report is going to focus on three of its most important processes.
2.1 Selection of Ingredients
The process of selecting ingredients for Chipotle Mexican Grill involves making sure that the produce and meat that they use for their food are as “green” as possible (Chipotle n.d., The Chipotle experience). This means that Chipotle only uses crops from family farmers instead of industrialized factory farms because the latter have the tendency to abuse the land (Chipotle n.d., The Chipotle experience). Chipotle also selects meat from ranchers whose pigs, cows, and chickens are naturally raised outdoors and have not been given antibiotics (Chipotle n.d., The Chipotle experience). The organization also tries to avoid using GMOs and preservatives as much as possible in their ingredients.
2.2 Food Preparation
Despite being a fast casual restaurant, Chipotle Mexican Grill still ensures that they are able to prepare the food quickly without sacrificing its fresh quality. This can be seen in the way they prepare their three main ingredients: guacamole, carnitas, and barbacoa. They make their guacamole by hand instead of with the use of mixers or food processors. This is because only through this can they get the best flavor of the avocados (Yglesias 2012). For the carnitas and the barbacoa, they season the pork and beef using fresh spices, marinate them for a full 8 hours, and then finally shred the meat. Another great thing about Chipotle’s food preparation process is that its last steps are done in the restaurant’s open kitchen so that the customers can freely watch as their food is being prepared.
2.3 Food Distribution
The process of distributing the food to the customers involves creating restaurants with a fast-paced but still comfortable and open environment. The fast-paced feature of Chipotle can be attributed to its efficient assembly line where each ingredient is laid out in front of the customers (Sahni n.d.). Afterwards, they can choose each and every ingredient that they want in their meal. Lastly, thanks to the amazing open kitchen, customers can watch as the people of Chipotle assemble the meal that they themselves chose.
3. Relationship Maps
Figure 1: Selection of Ingredients Relationship Map
Figure 2: Food Preparation Relationship Map
Figure 3: Food Distribution Relationship Map
4. Analysis and Discussion
Among the three processes already discussed in this report, the process of selecting ingredients will be further looked into. The reason behind choosing this specific process for deeper analysis instead of any of the other two is because this is where Chipotle’s competitive advantage in the industry is rooted in (Earl 1994). More importantly, this is where Chipotle begins to live out its vision/mission of “Food with Integrity”. In selecting only the finest, freshest, organic, and locally produced ingredients, Chipotle Mexican Grill has been able to become a legitimate competitor not only in the world of Mexican cuisine but also in the fast chain restaurant industry (Earl 1994). Nevertheless, this process still has room for improvement and this will also be touched upon in the report.
A closer look into the relationship map of the selection of ingredient (see Figure 1) reveals that there are a lot of interfacing, inputs, and outputs involved in this process. The interfaces are labeled with the number 2 and the inputs or outputs are labeled with the number 3. The inputs and outputs mainly consist of the ingredients themselves being transported from the farms and ranches to the Chipotle’s Supply Department. However, one important input is the evaluation of the company’s environmental consultants when it comes to ensuring that all the ingredients are abiding by the mantra of “Food with Integrity.” There is also a disconnect in this part, as labeled by the number 1. This disconnect refers to the fact that there are still GMOs and preservatives present in the ingredients of Chipotle Mexican Grill (Yglesias 2012). This is a huge contradiction to the company’s philosophy of ensuring that their ingredients are organic and all natural. Both the company’s environmental consultants and the suppliers themselves pose a huge inadequacy in this stage of the process.
4.1 Tightness and Dependence
In Chipotle’s process of selecting ingredients, there is a high degree of both tightness and dependence. All stages involved have a close relationship with one another and they are also affected if other stages are left unaccomplished (Aguilar-Daven 2004). This can be seen in the fact that if farms and ranches are unable to meet the standards of Chipotle, if the environmental consultants are unable to properly evaluate the sources of supply, or if the delivery system fails, then Chipotle wouldn’t have any ingredient for their food at all.
Bottlenecks occur when there is a blockage in the over-all business process of an organization. They happen because their resources are either equal to or less than the demand that they face (Earl 994). In selecting ingredients, bottlenecks can occur when there is a lack of meat and vegetables produced by the farms and ranches. If this happens, the supply of the Chipotle restaurants will not be enough to meet the high demands of their customers.
4.3 Service Blueprinting
The customers’ direct interaction with the process of selecting ingredients obviously takes place when they choose among those ingredients in the assembly line of the Chipotle restaurants. In this process, the line of visibility has two points of interaction: the customer being presented with the ingredients and the customer actually eating the food. The processes above the line should concentrate on being able to assemble the ingredients beautifully in such a way that the customers will like. Meanwhile the processes below the line should concentrate on being able to collect all the needed supplies from the ranches and the farms in the right time, right quantity, and right quality.
4.4 Process Measurement
In order to measure whether or not the business process of Chipotle Mexican Grill is able to meet its organizational goal, this report is going to take a look into its quality, process velocity, and speed of delivery (Davis and Heineke2005). The quality of Chipotle’s ingredients is extremely high. They are organic, healthy, sustainable, and delicious. However, this aspect still needs further improvement because some of their ingredients still contain GMOs and preservatives. Chipotle’s process velocity and speed of delivery, however, both pass with flying colors. The efficient assembly line and simple menu enable Chipotle restaurants to bring their ingredients from the kitchen to the customers in a matter of minutes. Also, part of the company’s “Food with Integrity” entails selecting ingredients from local sources. This means each of their restaurants only buys meat and produce from farms and ranches that are within 350 miles of its location. This makes delivery very quick and easy.
5. Conclusion and Recommendations
Chipotle Mexican Grill seems to be doing extremely well, thanks to their highly efficient business process and highly admirable mission statement. If there is one thing, though, that the company needs to work on is that they need to get rid of the disconnect between their suppliers and their environmental consultants. This disconnect is costing the company the quality of their products. This is because the disconnect enables GMOs to still be widely used in the ingredients of Chipotle. The good thing about this is that the company has resorted to transparency and has labeled all its ingredients that contain GMOs (The Global Language of Business 2014).
However, this is still not enough. Although being completely GMO-free seems to be extremely difficult especially in this day and age, Chipotle Mexican Grill should still be able to maximize the expertise of their environmental consultants by letting them look for safer and better alternatives to GMO ingredients. Becoming completely GMO-free seems to be so far ahead into the future, but what Chipotle can at least do now is provide a timeline that will show how the company is slowly improving the quality of their ingredients and when customers can expect their restaurants to be almost GMO-free.
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Biazzo, S., 2000. Approaches to business process analysis: A review. Business Process Management Journal 6 (2), p. 99-112.
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Sahni, R., n.d. Chipotle queuing system. [Online] p. 1-9. Available at: <https://www.academia.edu/5191558/Chipotle-Queuing_System> [Accessed 5 January 2015].
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Yglesias, M., 2012. Chipotle is Apple. [Online] Available at: <http://www.slate.com/articles/business/moneybox/2012/02/chipotle_is_apple_how_the_burrito_chain_is_revolutionizing_fast_food_.html> [Accessed 5 January 2015].
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