Case Study of Mumbai Dabbawala system-On time delivery Every Time
The name Maharashtra means The Great state or Great
Nation. The name is said to be have being originated probably
from Rathi which means chariot driver referring to drivers and
builders of chariot who were known as Maharathi’s or fighting
force. This was the place where the dabbawala system started
in way back in 1890.
Dabbawala ,sometimes spelled tiffinwalla is a person in the indian city
of mumbai whose job is to carry and deliver freshly made food in
lunch boxes to office workers.
This system began around the year 1885, where a banker in mumbai
hired a man to pick up a packed lunch from his home,have it delivered
to his office and when the real meal was finished,return the empty
box to his residence so it could be readied for delivery the following
NMTBSA: Nutan Mumbai tiffin box supplier association.The
dabbawalas history started in 1954, charitable trust registered in 1956
and it was being headed by president, Raghunath Medge,who was
assisted by a general secretary, a treasurer and a director.
Almost they covered 60 -70 kms.Total strength of employees 5000,
number of dabbas 2,00,000 i.e ( 4,00,000 transaction a day) Time
taken 3 hours.
No Alcohol Drinking during business hours
Wearing White Cap during business hours
Carry Identity Cards
LATEST MARKETING STRATEGY:
Marketing message in the “dabba”
Case Study : TBSA
Tiffin Box Suppliers Association
How do they do it…? (5 members)
structure Teams of 20-25 headed by a
• War against Time (10.30 –
1.00) Individual Dabbawalla
workload = 30 tiffins
• The Code
The service is uninterrupted even on the days of extreme weather, such as
Mumbai's characteristic monsoons. The local dabbawalas at the receiving
and the sending ends are known to the customers personally, so that there is
no question of lack of trust. Also, they are well accustomed to the local
areas they cater to, which allows them to access any destination with ease.
Occasionally, people communicate between home and work by putting
messages inside the boxes. However, this was usually before the
accessibility of telecommunications
Six Sigma is a Business management method.
Seeks to improve process quality through minimizing
variability and the identification and removal of error causes .
Among its methods is the systematic use of statistics.
Using a set of process assumptions , a six sigma quality level
is usually defined as 3.4 defective parts (errors) per million
Operational Committee Charitable Trust
Nutan Mumbai Tiffin Box
General Secretary General Secretary
5,000 including 635 Supervisor
Meet Mr. Dadabhau
Age: 65 years
Dabbawala since 1977
Area of operation: Kurla (East)
Typical number of dabbas collected
Kurla (East): 28
Typical number of dabbas delivered in
Ballard Estate and surrounding areas: 25
Residence: Mulund (a suburb on the
Railway line in North Mumbai,
approximately 15 kms (9 miles) away
Mr. Dadabhau’s Normal Day
Report for work at Kurla (station of origin).
Pick-up dabbas from homes.
Both groups congregate at Kurla with dabbas and sort based on destination
10.30 - 10.45 am
Board trains with dabbas either in wooden crates or in hand.
Travel by trains to Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST; erstwhile Victoria
this stage, the unloading takes place at the destination station Rearrangement
of tiffins takes place as per the destination area and destination building.
Delivery to offices at and around Ballard
Lunch time for the dabbawalas.
Here on begins the collection process where the dabbawalas have to pick up the
tiffins from the offices where they had delivered almost an hour ago.
Train ride back to station of origin (Kurla).
Sort the dabbas at the station of origin
Return the dabbas to homes
• STRENGTH: • OPPORTNITIES:
• Team work,discipline and honesty. • Tie up with caterers to serve variety
• Time management, ownership and of meals i.e diet food, chinese,
pride in the work, continental food, food for fasting.
• Customer satisfaction, low • Expanding network in other cities.
• Process consistency, service • THREAT:
commitment • Flexi timing work from home
• WEAKNESS: • During high alerts in the city they
• Highly dependent upon mumbai have to face a lot of problems in
local train service. getting their self and all the lunch
• Limited access to education limits boxes checked so this creates
diversification of members to other problem and also the time is being
business jobs wasted
THE ROYAL VISIT:
Recently, the dabbawala’s had royal company at Churchgate station.
The Prince of Wales himself had visited them when he came down to
He took keen interest in their way of functioning, expressed surprise at
their efficiency and was struck with awe when he was told that they
didn’t employ any technology.
The prince was presented a small memento, accompanied with a garland,
a Gandhi topi and a trophy by the dabbawalas.
AWARDS AND FELICITATION
Shri.Varkari Prabhodhan Mahasmati Dindi (palkhi) sohala – 4th march – 2001.
Invitation from CII for conference held in Bangalore.
Documentaries made by BBC ,UTV, MTV, and ZEE TV
Dabbawalla services are popular with the Indian IT developer community in
Silicon Valley, California, USA.
World record in best time management
Name in “GUINESS BOOK of World Records”.
Registered with Ripley's “ believe it or not”.
• Sense of deep commitment.
• Sense of work ethics.
• Best time management.
• Sandeep Patel, Tamanna Sethi, Aishwarya Pateriya, Renu
Saini, Nida Zainab , Amir Naqvi……. (Section Ist :Group 5)
Refrence:- Case Study:Harvard Business School(Stepfan Thomke, Mona
Sinha) REV. APRIL4, 2011, wikipedia.