Jabil Circuit: How Can the Company Prepare for a New Era of Mass Customization

Total Prizes Awarded of $10,000 (sponsored by the University of Dayton):

  • Grand Prize - $3,500
  • Second Place - $2,500
  • Third Place - $1,500
  • Fourth/Fifth Place - $1,250 each

Quick Links

Please see below for important links for the Spring 2017 Consulting Project:


During the spring 2017 term, University of Dayton students will tackle a real problem faced by Jabil Circuits, the world's third largest electronics contract manufacturer.

  • Students will read background materials provided by UD and conduct additional research.
  • Jabil currently is a mass producer of electronic parts for other companies all over the world (including various parts for phones, laptops and more). They do not currently sell finished products directly to consumers. Jabil is pondering the steps needed to move from their current role as a mass producer to a new, more modern and flexible role of mass customization - to be more responsive to specific customer demands and to do so quickly for their clients. Ideally, you could go to Best Buy, order a phone with your detailed requirements/needs and have it shipped to you in two days (rather than take the silver phone with existing feature x and y).
  • More details about both the project and the company will be introduced by senior leadership at Jabil to all teams (one of whom is a corporate officer & CIO - and a UD alum!).
  • Teams will work on their analyses throughout the spring 2017 term and present their results to a panel of judges during the Stander Symposium for the initial round of the project. The 5 teams judged to have the best analysis and presentation will enter the final round, and, one week later, will present for the judges again - this time, joined by Jabil executives.

Applicant/Team Eligibility

  • Teams must consist of 3 to 5 UD undergraduate or graduate students only (any school/major). Teams are considered finalized and cannot add members after February 17, 2017, when the team rosters are due. However, teams can drop in number down to the minimum 3 students (instructors can modify this rule for purposes of class assignments). Students must be in good academic standing with the University throughout the entire project to remain eligible for a prize.
  • A maximum of 20 teams (first come, first entered, based on time of registration) can compete in the project.
  • Registration opens on January 17, 2017 and closes on February 17, 2017. To register, please click here
  • Each team member must present in both the Initial Round and the Final Round.
  • Prize monies will be split equally among team members - no exceptions.
  • By entering, team members agree to allow UD to use their application materials, photos, likenesses and presentations to market, promote and provide information regarding the consulting project.

The Project

Jabil executives have centered the case on 5 questions that teams will research & comment on in their presentation:

  • Question 1: What characteristics do companies that excel in mass customization share?
  • Question 2: What are key aspects of the skillsets & mindset changes needed in the new era of manufacturing and how can Jabil develop them in the next few years?
  • Question 3: What are some common challenges faced by companies as they move from Mass Production to Mass Customization, and what can Jabil do to prepare to address these challenges?
  • Question 4: How can Jabil transform IT, marketing, finance, or strategy to provide more robust and responsive services to mass customization manufacturing?
  • Question 5: What are characteristics & market trends of Mass Production in Asia (or some other part of the world your team chooses); what should Jabil do to prepare for the increasing demand of customized manufacturing & take the lead among competitors?

Project Resources & Requirements

  • All teams should read the entire case study problem on the Google folder linked above.
  • All teams should get started on learning more about mass customization in the readings in the Google folder. An introduction to the Jabil company is also provided.
  • This is an open-source consulting project. Students may use any sources they wish as long as the sources are ethical to use and cited.
  • Teams will craft and present a 15 minute PowerPoint presentation that answers the case questions. The 15 minute time limit is strictly enforced. Presentations must be in PowerPoint only (no Keynote, Prezi, Google Apps or other software).
  • Teams must choose fonts carefully to ensure their slides show the same way on different computers. Common fonts include Arial, Helvetica, Times New Roman and Palatino. If using less common fonts, copy the font onto the flash drive in order to load it onto our presentation laptop computer just prior to presentation.
  • Each team must also present an executive summary of their recommendations (two pages maximum). Supporting data for your recommendations should be appended & do not count towards the 2 page maximum.

Evaluation Criteria

Judges will score the presentation on the following criteria:

  • Level of innovation/creativity/originality in the solution(s);
  • Critical thinking and analysis;
  • Quality of the presentation (slides & oral presentation);
  • Coverage of relevant issues/opportunities and thoroughness of analysis;
  • Jabil has no spending limit. Students should specifically identify financial drivers to success;
  • Presentations that are composed largely of research results ("What research told us...") are typically not sufficient to win. Presentations must go further to adivse Jabil on concrete and measurable steps the company should take to meet the challenges posed by mass customization.

Additional Rules

  • You do NOT have to use all of your allotted time. Quality is much more important than quantity.
  • Look at and use the INB 450 Library Course Guide as a method for enhancing quality.
  • ALL presentations must be accompanied by a Works Cited page to show what research used for the presentation. This Works Cited page will be handed to the judges at the beginning of the presentation. Likewise, 3 copies of the presentation should be provided to the judges.
  • ALL charts and graphs must contain a source and date, and all charts and pictures must either be original or under license. No copy and paste is accepted.
  • For each slide in the presentation, students should carefully consider the following: How does this slide support the conclusion or recommendation?
  • Participants are not allowed to contact any employee of Jabil or its subsidiaries and affiliates ("Jabil") for purposes of conducting research for this consulting project, including any family members who may be or have been employees of Jabil. Violations will result in forfeiture from the project (and possibly an 'F' in the assignment if completed as part of a class requirement), as well as an academic misconduct violation.

Key Dates

  • February 3, 2017 at 3:30pm in Miriam Hall 207: Dayton Kick-Off Meeting. At least two members from each team must attend, the information will not be repeated and all students will get the same information for the project.
  • February 17, 2017Registration Closes. All teams must be formed and all individuals must register separately.
  • March 17, 2017 at 12:00pm (noon) in Anderson Hall 129: Mid-Case Check-In (optional). This will be a chance to interact with judges, raise questions & seek clarification on case issues. This is optional and teams may send just one or more members to this session if they choose to attend.
  • April 5, 2017 during Stander Symposium: Initial Round Presentations. All teams make their presentations to UD judges in this initial round. Schedules will be developed & shared when this date nears (location TBD).
  • April 14, 2017 at 2:00pm in Anderson Hall 020: Final Round Presentations. The Top 5 teams from the initial round make final presentations. Teams may add to or otherwise change their presentation from the initial round. Prizes will be announced after all are presented and the judges have convened.