popular award

Managing Product Returns at Hewlett Packard

Published 16 May 2002
Reference 4940
Topic Operations
Region North America
Length 8 page(s)
Prizes & Awards

Winner of the Case Centre Awards and Competitions 2007 in the Category 'Production and Operations Management'


The case describes how Sylvia Davey, HP, handles the product returns for the printer division. It discusses product returns from a holistic business perspective starting with what affects consumer returns and how to influence this. It then discusses the reverse logistics and remanufacturing issues. Finally, it looks into how to create markets for the "as good as new" remanufactured products.

Teaching objectives

Increased legislation and environmental concerns and relaxed customer product returns policies lead to the need for a company to adequately organize these return flows. Unfortunately, many companies still consider this as a burden and focus on cost avoidance. The authors show how, if managed properly, product returns can be a (very) profitable business.

  • Product returns
  • Re-manufacturing
  • Reverse logistics
  • Closed loop supply chains
  • AR2002
  • RD0502