Equal Partners
by Roland Ezri

Equal Partners by Roland Ezri

Equal Partners

By Roland Ezri

"Women are the backbone of all societies. They do a substantial part of the work, and play a major role in raising the future generation yet they are largely powerless. The decisions that count are made by men and foisted upon women."

Writings by Roland Ezri

The Second Exodus – Israel – CCLXXIII. A Permanent Job (11 of 12)

One day, Ben notified me that we were going to meet with Mar A`tzmon in the afternoon.  “We” included Ben, Amir, a Canadian consultant by the name of Mr. Halperin, and myself.

Amir was the son of Iraqi immigrants; he was a young boy when he came to Palestine, and was for all intents and purposes a Sabra.  He had finished high school, and took great pride in that.  As far as I was concerned he was neither sharp nor a problem solver; he did what was expected from him, period.  (I suspect Ben thought along the same lines).

What was on the agenda took me totally by surprise.  Mr. Halperin was going to help Records introduce a system of inventory control.  Oh, we did talk about that for a long time, but it looked like we were finally taking a concrete step.

After the introductions, Halperin told us that he was going to make his presentation.  Presentation?  We had never heard that word before!  So he explained what that meant.

Mr. Halperin spoke no Hebrew, of course, but he spoke English and a good but accented French.

Right from the start of the meeting, there was a problem; Amir’s English was very limited, and Ben had to continually translate.  When the presentation started, A’tzmon put an end to the translation; he told Amir that he would later on get a summary.

Next Halperin advised us that he was going to provide us with handouts.  Handouts?  In my earlier English it meant handing out a coin to a panhandler! I was not alone, A’tzmon had an uncertain look on his face; Ben, on the other hand, didn’t seem surprised.

The handouts turned out to be notes, cards, a page filled with formulas, and examples using the formulas.

Before Halperin even started his presentation, he had added to my English vocabulary two new words:  Presentation and Handout!  They would come in handy when I immigrated to Canada!

At the center of that inventory control system was a large card with enough room on top to write the required formula, establish a reorder point, and how much to order; there was also an area for comments; finally, a space was reserved for the names of the suppliers supplying that particular article.

Periodically a calculation was to be carried out to determine if the inventory was getting low.

The parts planner was still an important player.  Such a system would allow him to focus on the technical and purchasing aspects of his job.  The onus would now be on the record clerk, and the storekeeper, to determine when it was time to place a new order.  The parts planner was still responsible for supervising the process and ordering the goods.  As experience was gained by all concerned, the parts planner could more and more take a hands-off approach.

Halperin went on to explain how the calculations would work, and various aspects of the system.

There would be a trial period, and during that time Halperin would be in IAI to help us develop the system.

Two areas would be used as pilots:  The card systems of Amir and I.  As we did our work, many issues were bound to come up, and hopefully solutions would be found to resolve the problems.

The hope was that the pilots would teach us the essentials of the system, and allow us to take it to a few other areas of Records.

It was obvious to all of us that the technique proposed would pose many difficulties.  All those calculations would require a phenomenal amount of time.  There would be more communications with the stores, and the planners; more memos exchanged; in other words an additional bureaucratic layer.  Fine on a small scale, but to expand it to all of Records would require an army of people!

The system as proposed was therefore impractical.  Then why propose it?  Because the world of business was about to undergo a revolutionary change.  And Records would find itself in the eye of the storm.

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