A Process can be defined as a collection of equipment, methods, people, and systems used together to produce the products/ services required. A Process Strategy in an organization’s approach is to transform resources into goods and services. The objective of the process strategy is to build a process that meets customer requirements and product specifications within cost and other managerial constraint. The process selected will have a long term effect on efficiency and flexibility of production, as well as on cost and quality of goods produced. Therefore much of the company’s operations strategy is provided at the time of process decision.
Within a given facility, several strategies may be used. These strategies are often classified as: Fig. 1 Process-Focused Repetitive-Focused Product focused Process-Focused Strategy The characteristics: facilities are organized by process, similar processes are together (example: all drill presses are together), low volume, high variety products, ‘Jumbled’ flow. Products follow many different paths. Other names for process focused strategy are intermittent process or Job shop. Process-Focused Strategy Examples: Machine Shop, Hospital, and Bank. Custom Woodworking shop Advantages: 1.
Greater product flexibility 2. More general purpose equipment 3. Lower initial capital investment Disadvantages: 1. High variable costs 2. More highly trained personnel 3. More difficult production planning & control 4. Low equipment utilization (5% to 25%) Repetitive Focused Strategy Characteristics: Facilities often organized by assembly lines, Characterized by modules, Parts & assemblies are made previously; Modules are combined for many output options. Other names are Assembly line, Production line E. g. auto-manufacturing, personal computers, house-hold appliances, etc. Assembly line example
Product focused strategy Characteristics: Facilities are organized by product which require High volume and low variety ; Conversion or further processing of undifferentiated materials such as petroleum, chemicals, or beer; Follows a predetermined sequence of steps, but flow is continuous rather than discrete – highly standardized. Also known as line flow production or continuous production. Examples include paper making, light bulbs, soft drinks, etc. Advantages 1. Lower production cost per unit 2. Lower but more specialized labour skills 3. Easier production planning and control 4.
Higher equipment utilization (70% to 90%) Disadvantages 1. Lower product flexibility 2. More specialized equipment Types of flow system Continuous flow It is characterized by a streamlined flow of products in the operating system. The Conversion process begins with input of raw material at one end, progresses through the system in an orderly fashion to finally become finished goods at the final stage. Production process is sequential and the required resources are organized in stages. Examples are several chemical processing industries such as manufacture of Petrochemicals, steel, pharmaceutical, cement and glass.
It ia also used in a discrete manufacturing industry high volume production of very few varieties (such as electrical bulbs or spark plugs) Intermittent flow It is characterized by mid-volume, mid-variety products/services. It increases the flow complexities. The flow and capacity balancing are difficult but important in intermittent type of flow system. Process industries use batch production methods while discrete industries use alternative methods of designing layout issues. The capacity estimation is hard and production planning & control is complex.
Process design for intermittent flow in Discreet Manufacturing Jumbled Flow System It occurs on account of non-standard and complex flow patterns characteristic in certain systems. Items are highly customized here and customer orders for one or a few products. Operational complexity arising out of jumbled flow is high. Discrete manufacturing with Jumbled flow uses a Job Shop structure Examples are turnkey project executor such as BHEL or L&T, customized manufacturing systems such as PCB fabricators, sheet metal fabricators, tool room operators and printing and publishing.
Process flow in job shops Complex issue is
An operations process is a set of related activities that combine to deliver something of value to a customer or to the organization. There are a number of methods of analysing process designs. Some of them that are discussed here are Flow diagrams, Time-Process-Function mapping, Value stream mapping, process charts and service blue printing. Process flow chart A process flow chart is an instrument that visualises and analyses the various systems and procedures (e. g. delivery of services, decision-making, funds allocation, accountingand monitoring) within an organisation. What can you do with it?
The flow chart analysis helps to identify the bottlenecks in the different processes within the organisation. It identifies unnecessary involvement of people, loopholes in decision making or unnecessary delays in the process. It assists to make the organisation more efficient in its operations. The process flow chart helps to design new processes for the primary process, support processes and supervisory processes, and helps to analyse the bottlenecks in existing procedures. It is very useful to help participants understand the interrelation of the work activities and to realise how the work of one person influences the others.
Steps in making a process flow chart 0. Formulate the (sub-) question that you want to answer by making a process flowchart. Aims for which a process flow chart is suitable are: ? ? ? To decide how to optimise core processes (operational planning and strategic decision making) To prepare strategic choices, identifying strengths and weaknesses (step to strategic decision making) To judge organisation suitability and performance (to make funding and programme positioning decisions) 0. Define the field of analysis. Decide whether you depict: ? ? ? ? ?
Current practice (daily practice; the informal reality) Current design (how it should happen according to ‘the books’) Redesign (establishing the desired process) Clearly distinguish current practice from current design and/or redesign Analyse the redesign (and even current design) only after the current practice 1. Choose the process. ? ? ? ? Which process are you going to analyse? Unique or standard Define the starting point Specify the outcome/result of the process 2. Describe the process as indicated below, using the indicated symbolism: ? ? ?
State the start and end point (outcome/result) Divide the process in 5-10 activities of the same level of analysis. If you have more than 10 steps: Cluster them or Make more than one flow chart Identify decision moments. Describe these decision moments inyes/no questions. Check that both the “Yes”-side and the “No”-side have a follow-up activity (arrow that leads somewhere), ifthat is reality. For example: Proposal approved? Yes: Proceed + Send confirmation to client No: File the proposal + Inform client with reasons ? Identify the responsible person/unit for each activity (this may not be the same as the implementing person).
All activities/decision moments that follow the symbol are the responsibility of the person/unit indicated. Therefore, if the responsible person/unit stays the same, you need not repeat the in-charge. ? Identify the information coming into the process and all information going out of the process. The arrows of the connecting lines indicate whether the information is going in or out ? Connect the symbols with arrows that indicate the flow of the process. Include loops to show that an earlier activity should be repeated 3. Add key information and write it next to the activities/decisions or arrows ? ? Volume: The quantity of the product or service you process in a certain period of time. This indicates the magnitude of the subject Time/Cost: The average or annual time/cost (expenditure) involved in each activity (write next to step). This indicates the organisation efficiency Duration: The (average) time that passes between two steps (write next to arrow). This indicates the responsiveness to clients 4. Identify possible bottlenecks. Ask questions like: ? ? ? Why does the activity/decision take place? Why does the activity/decision take place at this point in the sequence?
Why does the activity/decision (or the time between them) take the time it takes? ? ? ? ? ? (Why) is the activity/decision difficult to carry out? Why is this person responsible for this activity/decision? Who co-ordinates and supervises at different moments? What is the effect of external (information, input, and means) dependencies? What are the risks (what can go wrong) in the activity/decision? 5. Assess options for improvements. Check each option considering: ? ? ? ? Can you leave out activities, decision points or information? Can you combine/change activities, decision points or information?
Can you simplify activities, decision points or information? Can you change the responsible person? 6. Evaluate improvements, considering whether the options result in: ? ? ? ? ? Less effort (better methods, upgraded staff, better means and inputs) needed Less time (better sequence or screening, less rejection) needed Better quality service/product (better guidelines, control) Less resources (optimising expenses and quality) needed Better working conditions (more safety, fulfilment, less stress) 7. Draw conclusions, in relation to your (sub-) question.
Write strengths and weaknesses (judged from the point of view of your question) on green and red cards respectively. Figure below shows a process flow chart for electrical fittings manufacturing. Time based process mapping (TBPM) Process mapping allows the identification of business processes, organisational roles and financial accountabilities, and how these inter-relate between functions, with a view to their subsequent re-engineering and improvement. However, conventional process mapping techniques do not focus on the important metric of time.
Time Based Process Mapping is a tool for visually representing and analysing the key interconnecting processes which collectively constitute the supply and manufacturing chain in relation to the consumption of time. It must be emphasised that TBPM is quite different from the traditional ‘Time and Motion’ studies as practised by generations of Industrial Engineers. TBPM concentrates on the speed of progression of specific components through the production cycle, whilst time and motion studies are only concerned with the labour output and utilisation rates of employees.
Time Based Competition Time-based companies reduce cost indirectly through compressing time. When a company attacks time directly, the first benefits to show up are usually shorter cycle time and faster inventory turns. So when a company goes after time reduction in the right way, it tends to get both time and cost out. The reverse is not always so. Successful companies have shifted the focus of their source of manufacturing compete over the past few decades. Time Based Competitive Advantage The increased emphasis over the past few years on, the Order Winning Criteria of delivery time can be considered to be a new competitive paradigm.
The subject of ever shortening product lifecycles and rapid market obsolescence has received considerable academic attention and a wealth of literature has been published. The compression of time provides organisations with a distinct competitive cost advantage. Companies discover that costs do not increase when lead times are reduced – they decline. Costs do not increase with greater investment in quality-they decrease and also costs do not go up as product variety increases and response times reduce – they go down.
Key features of organisations that compress time are that they place high emphasis on: customer focus, responsiveness, R&D and innovation. Objectives of TBPM The three main objectives of TBPM are to: i) ii) iii) Fully define and simplify the production route, Compress the production cycle time, and Reduce the non value adding activities & Increase the value adding proportions of the process. What data is necessary? Key questions that need to be asked to gather the required data are: i) ii) iii) iv) v) vi) vii) What is the process?
Where does it start and finish? How long does it actually take from the first input to the last output? Does the process require a decision, how long does it take? How long should it take? How much time is spent on queuing prior to being processed? How much time is spent on rework? The figure below shows the service blueprint for Overnight Hotel Stay Service Process Charts The charting of work flows, working processes, systems and procedures is a useful way of recording the essential features of a work situation for subsequent analysis.
Process Charts are one of the simpler forms of workflow charting and are still in regular usage but are less common than they once were. A variety of process charts have been designed to meet the needs of a particular level or stage of analysis; they can be used at a detailed level (recording activity at a specific work station or workplace), but also at the wider system, process or procedure level. The different kinds of process chart share a common core set of symbols, though some have additional symbols for specific and specialised process steps. The common symbols (of hich there are only five) were first promulgated by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and have become known as the ASME symbols. OPERATION: a main step, where the part, material or product is usually modified or changed INSPECTION: indicates a check for quality or quantity TRANSPORT: the movement of workers, materials or equipment STORAGE: controlled storage in which material is received into or issued from a store, or an item is reference purposes DELAY or TEMPORARY STORAGE: indicates a delay in the process, or an object laid aside until required
These symbols are simply linked together in a vertical chart representing the key stages in a process; it is usual to place a commentary in an adjoining column recording contextual/environmental information. e. g. against a Transport symbol would be recorded, start of journey, end of journey, distance and mode of transport. The simplest form of process chart is known as an outline process chart and records an overview or outline of a process. Only those steps of a process that can be represented by the ASME symbols of operation and inspection are recorded.
An outline process chart is often a useful first step to identify key areas of concern before recording (part of) the process in more detail. In a “full” process chart, where all symbols are used, it is common to chart the process from the “viewpoint” of the material being processed, the worker carrying out the work or, less commonly, a piece of equipment. Thus, the same symbols can be used in different ways. As a simple example, a piece of equipment can be represented on an equipment-type flow process chart as a delay because it is not in use; while a material-type flow process chart of he same process would show the material being transported to the next work station, and a man-type chart could show the operator involved in another operation on another machine. The chart to be used may be determined by the purpose of the investigation or by the relative costs involved in the process – a highly capital-intensive process may focus more attention on the equipment being used. Process charts may also be used at a more micro level of analysis. An example is the two-handed process chart which records the motions performed by both hands during a task.
The sequence of motion of each hand is charted using the same symbols as before. There are slight changes to the meaning of the symbols, however. The delay symbol is used to indicate that the hand is waiting to carry out its next task. The storage symbol is used to indicate that the hand is holding on to a piece of material or a document. Two-handed process charts are usually drawn on a pre-formatted diagram. Their use has generally been superseded by the analyses involved in the use of low level pre-determined motion time systems. The figure below shows the process chart for Requisition of Petty Cash
Value Stream Mapping Value Stream Mapping is a method of creating a “One page picture” of all the processes that occur in a company, from the time a customer places an order for a product, until the customer has received that product in their facility. The goal is to depict material and information flows across and throughout all Value-Adding Processes required to produce and ship the product to the customer. Value Stream Maps document all of the processes used to produce and ship a product, both Value-Adding and Non-Value-Adding (Waste) processes.
Why Value Stream Map? During the team creation of a Value Stream Mapping, business and manufacturing waste that occur in the processes can be easily identified. Once the Current State Value Stream Mapping is created, it becomes the baseline for improvement and for the creation of a Future State Value Stream Mapping. The FSVSM can then be used as a World Class Manufacturing implementation road map. The steps to implement value stream mapping are: Step 1 – Determine the product or service to be analyzed.
Step 2 – Author a value stream map that depicts the process steps, information flows, and timelines that are required to create the product or service being analyzed. The mapping can either be a design, production, or service flow and may use standardized value mapping process symbols. Step 3 – Examine the process streams on the value stream map to determine if there are any redundancies or wasteful steps and mark them for modification or deletion. Step 4 – Redraw the mapping as a future state value stream map with the wasteful steps removed.
Step 5 – Implement process changes in the organization to work towards the new value stream mapping. The figure below shows value stream map of a typical manufacturing firm Service Blue Printing The service blueprint is a technique used for service innovation. The blueprint shows processes within the company, divided into different components which are separated by lines. Service blueprints are maps or pictures that precisely portray how a service process is built up. It is used to provide individuals, which are involved in the process, help to understand and to deal sober with certain circumstances.
Blueprints are especially useful, when it comes to developing and designing new services. It visualizes the service simultaneously depicting the visible components of the service, the roles of employees and customers, the intersections of customer contact, and the process of service delivery. The blueprint provides a way to divide a service into logical elements and to picture the tasks or steps in the process, the guideline how customer experience a service, and the instruments by which the tasks are accomplished. Blueprinting is already used in different techniques and fields, including computer systems analysis.
The service blueprint consists of 5 components: 1. Customer Actions 2. Onstage / Visible Contact Employee Actions 3. Backstage / Invisible Contact Employee Actions 4. Support Processes 5. Physical Evidence 1. Customer Actions This component contains all of the steps that customers take as part of the service delivery process. This element is always on top of the service blueprint. 2. Onstage / Visible Contact Employee Actions This element is separated from the customer actions by a ‘line of interaction’. These actions are face-to-face actions between employees and customers. . Backstage / Invisible Contact Employee Actions The ‘line of visibility’ separates the Onstage from the Backstage actions. Everything that appears above the line of visibility can be seen by the customers, while everything under the line of visibility is invisible for the customers. A very good example of an action in this element, is a telephone call; these is an action between an employee and a customer, but they don’t see each other. 4. Support Processes The ‘internal line of interaction’ separates the contact employees from the support processes.
These are all the activities carried out by individuals and units within the company who are not contact employees. These activities need to happen in order for the service to be delivered. 5. Physical Evidence For each customer action, and every moment of truth, the physical evidence that customers come in contact with is described at the very top of the service blueprint. These are all the tangibles that customers are exposed to that can influence their quality perceptions. Building a blueprint The process of structuring a blueprint involves six steps: 1. The identification of the service process, that is supposed to be blueprinted 2.
The identification of the customer segment or the customers that are suppose to experience the service 3. Picturing the service from the customer’s perspective 4. Picturing the actions of the contact employee (onstage and backstage), and/or technology actions 5. Linking the contact activities to the needed support functions 6. Adding the evidence of service for every customer action step The figure below shows the service blueprint for Overnight Hotel Stay Service Service processes What is a Service? A Service is the value provided to the customer through a set of interactions and impacts on the input from the customer.
The service process is implemented and executed by the service provider. The input to the service process from the customer may be in form of information, belongings or even the person of the customer itself. The service and service process are designed to reach a goal which has been defined by the stakeholders, especially the customer and the service provider. The service, its goal, the service process, the customer, the service provider and the resources are embedded into an environment which is source of legal compliance requirements etc. All together they constitute a service system.
Service processes and their properties There are a number of crucial differences between service and business processes. 1. There are intense interactions with the customer: For example, it may be necessary that the customer provides some information to allow the further proceeding of the process. It is important to emphasize that a service process must describe the interaction between customer and service provider. 2. Service processes differentiate two areas, front stage and back stage. The front stage contains the activities of the customer and the service provider’s activities that are visible to the customer.
The back stage contains the activities not visible to the customer. 3. Service processes need to represent the handover of resources and information from the customer to the service provider and the restitution vice versa. Furthermore, service processes are often cross-organizational. A top-level service process that is responsible for providing the service to the customer coordinates a number of sub processes. Fig. 2 Product Process Design (top) v/s Service Process Design (bottom) Characteristics of services ? Services are tangible ?
Service output is variable ? Services have higher customer contact ? Services are perishable ? Services are inseparable from delivery ? Services tend to be decentralized and dispersed ? Services are consumed more often than products ? Services can be easily emulated Many services come as part of a larger package of bundle of things. The service-product bundle consists of 1) The physical goods or facilitating goods, 2) The tangible service provided or explicit service, and 3) The psychological service or implicit service For example, at a winter ski resort. The facilitating goods are the chair lifts, buildings and mountain itself at the resort. ? The explicit service is primarily the skiing experience, but you also have the interaction with employees and the visual experience in the shops and sleeping quarters. ? The implicit service pertains to the fun generated, the sense of security you have and the excitement of the skiing. It is important to pay attention to all these experiences. Service recovery is the ability to quickly compensate for the failure of service delivery and restore, if possible, the service required by the customer.
Obviously, service failure should be held to a minimum, but the recovery can also mean the difference between success and failure of the company service Guarantees help the company in clearly defining the process of service delivery and specify the extent of service recovery, if needed. Thus a process can be designed to provide consistent service. Service Process Design Service process design refers to the arrangement of service facilities where the service is provided and the processes through which the service operations are structured and delivered.
Lovelock classified service process by the extent of demand fluctuations and the extent to which supply capacity is constrained. When demand is highly fluctuated and peak demand regularly exceeds capacity, managers must consider altering either demand pattern or supply capacity so that service can be delivered without incurring long customer waiting time. In case demand pattern cannot be altered, managers could consider operations-oriented strategies to control the level of service supply, such as scheduling parttime workers and cross training service personnel.
The way in which the service process is designed determines, to a large extent, the wait that customers experience. Any reductions in customer waiting time by better management of process design can certainly help lower both customer dissatisfaction and defection. Often, managers have a number of alternatives to choose from when shaping the design of their service delivery process. Fig. 3 Service Design Process The Service Matrix As the popularity of Service Learning grows, the need to have a common language for discussion is critical.
Currently there are a tremendous amount of resources on Service Learning, but often these resources are complex and abstract, leading to difficulties in describing and defining quality service learning experiences. In order to address this problem, The Service Matrix was created. The Service Matrix was designed to plot individual contributions to a particular service effort but is not intended to plot an entire service effort. With these parameters in mind, the X axis measures the value of a service effort to the community, while the Y axis measures he formal learning that occurred during the service effort. These axes intersect and provide the framework for the four quadrants of The Service Matrix. The following examples best describes these four quadrants of The Service Matrix. Quadrant One: Basic Volunteerism (Lower Formal Learning, Lower Value to the Community) Anthony attends a blood drive and gives a pint of blood. This example is considered basic volunteerism because Anthony learned very little (lower formal learning) and the individual pint of blood is small when compared to the overall need for blood in the community (lower value).
Quadrant Two: Community Service (Lower Formal Learning, Higher Value to the Community) In this example, Chloe brings 10 of her friends to the blood drive. Although, Chloe’s formal learning has not increased (Lower Formal Learning) with this example, due to her efforts she has now increased her value to the community (Higher Value to the Community) by meeting the need with greater impact. Chloe’s contribution is considered community service; however, her friends remain in the basic volunteerism quadrant.
Quadrant Three: Community-Based Learning (Higher Formal Learning, Lower Value to the Community) Carlos is a high school senior enrolled in a Certified Nursing Assistance (CNA) class. As part of his coursework, he is assigned to attend a blood drive and observe nurses drawing blood. As a result, Carlos saw firsthand how his course work applied to real life situations (Higher Formal Learning), although his individual contribution to the community was insignificant (Lower Value to the Community) because there was no service performed on his behalf.
Quadrant Four: Service Learning (Higher Formal Learning, Higher Value to the Community) Pauline is in a marketing class at her high school. After learning basic marketing principles, her assignment is to apply her knowledge in a way that would benefit the community. Pauline reads in the local paper that there is a need for blood in the local blood banks and hospitals. Responding to this need and using her marketing knowledge, Pauline organizes a blood drive at her high school. Putting theories into ractice, Pauline was able to internalize and reinforce her marketing knowledge (Higher Formal Learning). At the same time, because of Pauline’s efforts, 100 pints of blood were collected. (Higher Value to the Community) Objectives 1. By using The Service Matrix, individuals will gain a clear framework for understanding the different levels of service, including service learning. 2. Individuals using The Service Matrix as a reflection tool will be able to evaluate the quality and impact of their individual contribution(s) to a particular service effort.
Customer Waiting Time The total elapsed time between issuance of a customer order and satisfaction of that order. Ideally, CWT will include all customer orders, regardless of commodity or source, immediate issues, and backorders (and) include issues from wholesale and retail stocks as well as various other arrangements. Consumers today are more constrained by time than ever before. In an intensely competitive world the pressure, expectation and need to accomplish more in less time is unlikely to diminish.
Service providers understand the premium that consumers place on time they view as wasted while waiting for the delivery of services. A customer waiting in line for service is potentially a lost customer. As such, managers of service operations constantly strive to shorten customer waiting time during service delivery. Firms across a variety of industries have introduced numerous peripheral service elements to the service package experience of their customers, in an attempt to shorten customer waiting times.
Such efforts are best illustrated by retail stores that have check-out registers which automatically print the date, amount and name of payee on the cheques customers use when making payment. More recently, new technology offers even more opportunities to improve service process and thus customer service in various industries. For instance, the practice of “e-ticketing” in the airline business has definitely made a huge impact on ticket purchasing as well as airport check-in processes.
Productivity Productivity is the ratio of outputs (goods and services) divided by the inputs (resources such as labor and capital). It differs from Production in that production is a measure of the output and not the efficiency. Productivity = Units produced / Input used ? Measure of process improvement ? Represents output relative to input ? Only through productivity increases can our standard of living improve Example: Improving Productivity at Starbucks A team of 10 analysts continually look for ways to shave time. Some improvements: 1.
Stop requiring signatures on credit card purchases under $25- Saved 8 seconds per transaction 2. Change the size of the ice scoop- Saved 14 seconds per drink 3. New espresso machines- Saved 12 seconds per shot Operations improvements have helped Starbucks increase yearly revenue per outlet by $200,000 to $940,000 in six years. Productivity has improved by 27%, or about 4. 5% per year. Multi-Factor Productivity Productivity = Output / Labor + Material + Energy + Capital + Miscellaneous ? Also known as total factor productivity ?
Output and inputs are often expressed in dollars Labor Productivity Productivity = Units Produced / Labour hours used Service Productivity ? Typically labor intensive ? Frequently focused on unique individual attributes or desires ? Often an intellectual task performed by professionals ? Often difficult to mechanize ? Often difficult to evaluate for quality Work Measurement Work Measurement refers to determining the output in quantitative terms. It implies measuring the volume of work completed and the time spent in completing it.
It involves the study of the time required for performing each element of an office operation. Thus, work measurement includes the analysis of each operation, identifying its elements of parts and measuring the time taken by an employee in performing each element of the operation. This technique used for work measurement is known as “Time Study”. Besides determining the actual time taken in performing any operation, time study also enables time standards to be set for performing the operation. Although the main objective of office work measurement is to aid management n planning and controlling office operations, yet some of the other objectives of work measurement are: a) Decide the number of employees in each department b) Determine the standard work-load for each employee c ) Measure the performance of individual employees d) Help decide appropriate methods of motivation e) Simplify work systems f) Increase individual efficiency g) Reduce the cost of office services Steps in Work Measurement The following steps should be taken by the office manager before work measurement is undertaken in an office: a) Planning b) Work improvement c) Standardisation of office work measurement and standardisation of activities d) Listing of tasks to be measured e ) Defining unit of measurement and methods of measurement f) Securing subordinates’ willing co-operation g) Executing the programme. vQuick Check Mark True or False 1. One of the objectives of work measurement is to evaluate the year-on-year output produced. (ANS:F) 2. Labour Productivity is defined as Output per unit of Labour. (ANS:F) 3.
Service Productivity is difficult to mechanise and evaluate. (ANS:T) 4. Simplifying work systems is an objective of work measurement. (ANS:T) Importance of Office Work Measurement 1. Planning and Scheduling Work 2. Appraisal of Employee Performance 3. Estimation of Manpower Requirement 4. Cost Calculations 5. Improved employee motivation and morale Techniques of Work Measurement in Office 1. Past Performance Basis 2. Time Study 3. Work Sampling Time Study Time Study is the most widely used and best known technique of work measurement. Time study method helps in setting time standards for work. This method is also known as a ‘stop watch study’ method to measure work.
Time study or ‘stop watch study’ is the process of recording and analysing systematically the time required to perform office operations by an average employee working at average speed under standard conditions, using standard methods. Essential requirements for time study are: 1. Skilled analyst 2. Standardisation of work methods 3. Standard conditions under which work has to be performed 4. Selection of well-trained employees who are acquainted with the purpose of the study 5. Determining the duration of the study The following steps are to be taken for conducting a time study programme: i) Identify the job to be studied and break down the relevant tasks into basic elements. For example, the task of mail opening nvolves five elements, that is, picking up envelope, cutting the edge of envelope, removing the contents of the envelope, connecting the cover with papers contained in the envelope and placing the letter in the tray. ii) Determine the number of work cycles to be observed and design the time date sheet for recording time elements for each time cycle. iii) Record the time taken for each element of the work process on the designed time date sheet. A stop-watch is generally used for determining the time taken. This process has to be repeated as per (ii). iv) Calculate the average time for each element from the work cycle readings (iii). v) Add allowances for delays, fatigue, etc. i) On the basis of above steps (iv& v) work standards can be determined and report drafted/ This method is simple and can be adopted without much additional cost. But the data collected are subject to the nature of conditions and the competence of employees; hence, the standards set so may not be much reliable. However, scope of improvement in this method is not ruled out. Summary A process strategy is used by organizations to build a production process that meets customer requirements and adheres to product specifications within cost and other constraints. An efficient process strategy helps the organization to develop a competitive advantage over other organizations.
Various process strategies can be classified under one of the four broad process strategies: namely process focus, repetitive focus, product focus and mass customization. The choice of process strategy depends upon the type of product to be produced. In order to determine which process is most suited to transform resources into goods and services, operations managers compare various aspects of the process such as maximization of customer value, competitive advantage etc. There are a number of tools which can be used to understand the complexities of process design and redesign. Some of these tools are flow diagrams, time-process-function mapping, value-stream mapping, process charts and service blueprinting.
Each of these five process analysis tools has its strengths and variations. Service processes, unlike production processes, are heavily dependent on customer interaction and customization according to customer needs. Although customer interaction often affects process performance adversely, it can’t be done away with in case of service processes. The effectiveness of a service process depends upon the level to which the manager can accommodate the special requirements of a customer. Service processes having high labour intensity can be improved by focussing on human resources whereas services involving low labour intensity benefit from innovations in process technology and scheduling.
Equipment and technology are other important factors that need to be considered during process design or redesign. These decisions can be complex because of availability of large amount of alternatives in both production and service processes. Some of the production technologies that are widely used today are machine technology, automatic identification systems (AISs), process control, vision systems, robots, automated storage and retrieval systems (ASRSs), automated guided vehicles (AGVs), flexible manufacturing systems (FMSs) and computer integrated manufacturing (CIMs). The choice of technology depends upon the type of product and the budget constraints. Technology advancement has taken place in service design as well.
Industries such as hospitality, airlines and even food & beverages have seen a rapid change in technology which has resulted in more efficient and therefore better quality of services. Consumer demands are dynamic and therefore keep changing with time. Consequently, business processes also need to be redesigned from time to time in order to cope up with changing demands. Effective redesign depends upon questioning both purpose and underlying assumptions of a process and addressing the issues. Process redesign can also address issues of expanding a business, improving the quality or efficiency of a process, or adding variety to the type of products manufactured.
Redesigning of a process casts aside all notions of how a process is currently being done and focuses on improvements in customer value, cost, and time. Another important aspect of process design which has caught attention is the ethics and environmental friendliness of a process. As businesses are becoming more and more socially responsible, ethical and environment friendly processes are the need of the hour. Some of these actions are legally required, such as pollution control, while others are done by businesses as part of their corporate responsibility towards society. In future, the main focus of businesses will be to make their processes socially responsible, i. . helping in the welfare of the society along with making profits for the business. Short-Answer Questions 1) What is a process strategy? Why is it useful for an organization? 2) Name different kinds of process strategies. Write short notes on each explaining the types of products for which they can be used. 3) Mention three differences between product focused and process focused strategies. 4) What are the factors that need to be considered while analyzing and designing processes? 5) How is time-function mapping different from value-stream mapping? 6) Briefly explain the difference between production process design and service process design. ) Write short notes on Flexible Manufacturing Systems and Computer-Integrated Manufacturing Systems. Point out the difference between them. 8) Give two examples of technology improvements in service sector. 9) What is process redesign? When is it required in an organization? 10) Demonstrate the importance of ethical and environmental factors to businesses with at least two examples. Long-Answer Questions 1) Briefly describe mass customization process indicating the instances where it can be used. What are the requirements to make mass customization work in an organization? 2) Describe an instance where product focus can be used. Draw flow diagram for the example given. ) What are crossover charts? Briefly explain how they can be used to compare various process strategies. 4) Write brief notes on: a) Flow Diagrams. b) Time-Function Mapping. c) Value-Stream Mapping. d) Process charts. e) Service Blueprinting. 5) What are different production technology tools available to businesses today? Write a short note on each of them. Also, give examples of products where each of the production technology tools can be used. Multiple choice Questions 1) Process focused strategy is used for a; Low volume, low variety products b; Low volume, high variety products c; High volume, low variety products d; High volume, high variety products ) Product focused strategy is used for a; Low volume, low variety products b; Low volume, high variety products c; High volume, low variety products d; High volume, high variety products 3) Mass customization strategy is used for a; Low volume, low variety products b; Low volume, high variety products c; High volume, low variety products d; High volume, high variety products 4) Crossover charts are used for a; Comparison of process choices b; Design of process choices c; Both comparison and design of process choices d; None of the above 5) Which among these is not a focus point while designing process strategies? a; Customers ; Products c; Suppliers d; Technology 6) Product focussed facility is a a; Low fixed cost and low variable cost facility b; Low fixed cost while high variable cost facility c; High fixed cost while low variable cost facility d; High fixed cost and high variable cost facility 7) Which of these is not a process analysis and design tool? a; Time-function mapping b; Human-resource mapping c; Vale-stream mapping d; Service Blueprinting 8) Which of the following is not a production technology area? a; Automatic Identification Systems b; Flexible Management Systems c; Layout Management Systems d; Computer Integrated Manufacturing 9) Service Blueprinting focuses on a; Time taken to complete individual processes b; The processes which result in adding value to the product c; Customer and the provider’s interaction with the customer d; Symbols which are used to differentiate between activities 10) Which among these is not a process strategy? ; Product focus b; Process focus c;Mass customization d;Process control 11) The decision to be kept in mind while analyzing and designing processes are a; whether the process minimizes total cost b; whether the process saves time c;whether the process adds value as perceived by the customer d;All of the above 12) Equipment utilization in case of a process-focused facility is in the range of a; 5%-25% b; 25%-45% c; 50%-70% d; 75%-95% Numerical-Problems 1) XYZ ltd. has 3 alternatives to produce 30000 units of a certain product X. The total fixed and variable costs related to each alternative are mentioned in the table below: Alternative 1 Total Fixed Cost Total variable Cost/ Unit 40000 18 Alternative 2 90000 16 Alternative 3 130000 15 On the basis of the data given above, answer the following questions: a) Draw a cross-over chart reflecting each alternative. ) Which alternative is best for producing product X? c) Which alternative will be the best one if the units to be manufactured are 45000? d) Determine the economic volume for each process. 2) An automobile repairing garage has an average of 30 cars turning in for maintenance every day. The annual fixed costs of repair & maintenance is Rs 730,000 and variable cost of maintenance per car is Rs 50. A new technology has come up in the market which will reduce the variable cost per car to Rs 40 but will increase the annual fixed costs to Rs 109500. Is it advisable for the owner of the garage to switch to new technology? Assume negligible installation costs and 365 days in a year. ) Clean-tech washing machine manufacturers have four options to produce their washing machines. The costs involved in each process have been tabulated below: Process Control Annual Fixed Costs 150000 Direct Material/Unit Direct Labour/Unit Power Expense/Unit 32 56 34 51 28 49 27 47 34 Robots 180000 33 FMS 200000 35 CIM 220000 34 The number of units manufactured annually is 4500. Answer the questions below: a) Draw crossover chart reflecting each process and find out the indifference points. b) Which alternative is best for producing the washing machines? c) If the number of washing machines manufactured annually changes to 8000, which one would be the best alternative? ) Draw flow diagrams for: a) An iPod b) A Mercedes-Benz c) Johnny-walker scotch whisky 5) Prepare process charts, time-function maps and service blueprints for the processes mentioned in Q-4. Case Studies: Case Study 1: Simulation modelling for manufacturing of major Boeing components using FMS, MCM and AGVs Every Boeing commercial airplane is customized for a specific customer. Manufacturing processes of some major components are desirable to follow the FMS concepts in a customized manufacturing environment. In the case study that follows, a wing assembly process is examined by means of discrete simulation modelling. There are more than thirty complex processes applied to more than fifteen machine classes.
Most processes require a different number of labour entities from various labour classes. The overall pace of the whole system (i. e. , the system take time) is desired to be a variable that impacts the process time of all related processes, as well as the number of assigned labourers. A modular approach to MCM system design will not only benefit the overall performance of a flexible MCM system, but will also enhance simulation-modelling exercises. Discrete event simulation technology employs the same platform concept as in modelling highly flexible and rapid reconfigurable production lines. Such modelling methods reflect manufacturing processes according to the ever-changing customized demands.
Many fundamental manufacturing process parameters, such as layout reconfigurations, and resource re-allocations, can be derived ahead of time from the simulation models. A high-level process flow of the simulation model is shown below in figure 1, where source 1 generates incoming parts according to the system take time with optional statistical distributions. Buffer S receives incoming parts via the only crane resource in the system. The part will then be lifted by the crane to the machine B where multiple processes will be performed by multiple resources. The part then continues to move from the machine B to the machine P, the end of the process line. Multiple processes are assigned throughout this line on each machine.
An additional process is needed in the middle of the line where the part will be transferred to the buffer A followed by a couple of external processes. Figure 1: The simulation model process technique Afterwards, buffer A receives the part and calls for the overhead crane to transfer the part back to buffer T where the part will continue through the rest of the process. At the end of the line, the part goes from the machine P to the buffer A then to the sink, which is the final destination of all parts in the simulation model. Two different part-carrying platforms are involved in the system. The “high speed” dolly transfers parts to and from buffer A.
The “low speed” dolly carries one part at a time from machine B all the way to machine P. Additional components are introduced to the system from source 2 and 3 at different stages of the process line. Figure 2: An aircraft major component assembly line simulation model Resource class types in this model consist of labour, machine, and Automatic Guided Vehicle (AGV) elements. The machine class stands alone for each machine, while the labour and AGV classes are managed by their respective controllers. Those thirty plus processes that are stand-alone objects can be assigned to multiple machines. Thus, each machine has from two to six assigned processes.
Processes run at all times in an endless do-loop as part of the nature of this modelling environment. As soon as a condition is met for a process, it will execute its logic and its assigned time duration on the machine where it resides. After the last process sequence of the last machine class has been executed, the part is transferred to the sink class where it will be logically destroyed and removed from the modelling system. The approach of this simulation modelling successfully manages a flexible customized manufacturing system in a flexibly modulated and customized fashion. For each complicated customized scenario, it is comprehendible that traditional manual modelling modification will take much longer effort than this technique.
As compared to alternative approaches to this MCM application, benefit of this innovative methodology is evident in the following points: • Customizable • Ease of deployment • Scalable Additional detailed verification between simulation models and flexible MCM exercises on the shop floor remain to be fully performed once this conceptual process development turns into reality. Nevertheless, approaches and methodologies presented in this work illustrate unparalleled advantages in operating flexible and customized manufacturing systems. Authors: Dr. Guixiu Qiao, Computer Scientist Manufacturing Systems Integration Division National Institute of Standards and Technology 100 Bureau Drive, MS 8260 Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8260, USA [email protected] nist. gov [email protected] com Tel: 301-975-4735 Roberto F. Lu, PE, Associate Technical Fellow Boeing Commercial Airplanes Manufacturing R &
D The Boeing Company PO Box 3707 Mail Code: 6X-TR Seattle, WA 98124-2207, USA roberto. f. [email protected] com Tel: 425-234-4049 Charles McLean, Computer Scientist Manufacturing Systems Integration Division National Institute of Standards and Technology 100 Bureau Drive, MS 8260 Gaithersburg, MD 20899-8260, USA [email protected] nist. gov Tel: 301-975-3511 Case Study 2: Computer Integrated Manufacturing in Small Companies Computer integrated manufacturing (CIM) technology provides companies with an excellent opportunity in order to compete in the present global context. The actual situation also favours small companies in developing and implementing CIM applications, due to many concurrent factors (de Venuto et al. 1994; Gupta and Brennan, 1995): • availability of low cost hardware and software tools, with better performance and quality, makes CIM solutions accessible even to limited budget companies; • technical improvement in the fields of networking and personal computers allows for reliable distributed information systems, providing the opportunity to use an affordable stepby-step approach while safeguarding integrity; • Increased awareness, at management level, of the competitive potential offered by CIM solutions; • actual turbulence of markets requires small companies to continuously increase performance, such as production flexibility, timely purchasing and delivery, process and product quality, in order to avoid the risk of quickly being overshadowed by more farsighted competitors. As a consequence, the introduction of CIM technologies may represent, particularly for small companies, one of the most promising strategies to acquire and maintain a competitive edge, from product development to marketing and distribution. The case study presented concerns CIM introduction in a small company (Italpneumatica Sud) working in the area of pneumatic components with the trademark SMC (one of the leading producers in the world).
Like many other small medium-sized companies, Italpneumatica Sud has to solve integration problems on a limited budget. The strategic requirements to be met are as follows: • Need to guarantee customer service by reducing lead times: this involves timely information, accurate delivery times and a reliable logistic system; • Need to guarantee product and process quality: this requires accurate operations and process control to make quality certification possible (EN 29000); • need to guarantee the setting up of a safe and timely corporate information system able to supply each user with online data required for operational and decision-making procedures.
The main problems in this case study can be summarized as follows: • High throughput time; • Production management practically characterized by no scheduling; • Excessive reliance on paper support for information exchange; • Low level of process control; • Scarce visibility of manufacturing process at management level; • Accumulation of work in process inventory at shop floor level; • Stock levels not optimized; • Actual production costs not foreseeable. Prepare a detailed Computer Integrated Manufacturing System for Italpneumatica Sud. Authors: A. C. Caputo, G. Cardarelli, M. Palumbo and P. M. Pelagagge Reference: Industrial Management & Data Systems 98/3  138–144 References i) Naughton, S. (2000) Understanding Service Learning.
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