First day at client office

Today was the first day to meet with our CAP client – Mahindra and Mahindra, one of the leading automotive manufacturers in India. The two projects that CAP India team is working on are related to order fulfillment and supply chain responsiveness. Everyone was excited and eager to finally meet the leadership here with whom we worked for the past five months. Today was the big day to present to the client our report and the hard work and research that went behind it.

The day started with an introduction by the vice president of the automotive demand chain management. The head of sales and customer care had a very candid discussion with us in terms of the current automotive market in India and some of the challenges that Mahindra faces in this dynamic Indian market from competitors and their models, changing preferences of customers., and opportunities that can be exploited. We came to know that the automotive models are named in a unique way where each name ends with the syllable “O”, such as Scorpio, Xylo, Verito, Quanto and Bolero. It was funny that we all thought XUV 500 was pronounced as XUV five hundred; when in fact it is known as XUV 5 double O.

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Client treated us like special guests and made available multiple conference rooms for all our discussions. The atmosphere was casual, humorous and relaxing.  Everyone was extremely hospitable and we were amazed at the amount of time that our client spent with us. All the discussions started with a note of friendliness and relationship building. We enjoyed a round of Indian chai, coffee and snacks.

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Soon it was lunch time. Client had arranged lunch for all of us in the plant’s cafeteria. It was another round of delicious Indian buffet. Client was so concerned with students being able to handle the Mumbai heat that they had arranged a giant 10 seater golf cart for us to be transported from the main office to the cafeteria which was like 80 yards away!

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Finally it was the big time for our presentations. All the teams received positive feedback as well as some critique from the client. Client’s demand chain management team has been very kind and patient with us and we are looking forward to the next few days for more fact finding and data collection to fine tune our final project report.

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