What is a Production System?
Production System refers to that set-up of the organization, which is engaged in producing products. It is an activity in which resources are put together and converted into a product. This process enables adding value to that product. Further, the process takes place as per the policies of the management.
Characteristics of Production System
- Objective: Because the process of production is an organized activity. So, it takes place with an objective.
- Transformation: Conversion of various inputs into outputs takes place in this process.
- Feedback: Feedback about activities is necessary. This helps in controlling and improving the performance of the system.
Classification of Production System
One should note that the classification of any production system relies on many factors. These factors include type and volume of production. Generally, there are three types of production systems divided into two categories:
- Intermittent production
- Job Production
- Batch Production
- Continuous Production
- Mass and Flow Production
As the name signifies, the production process takes place at irregular intervals to produce a number of different products with the help of one production line. Manufacturers use this system to produce low-volume, high-variety products. The types of intermittent production systems are discussed below:
Job Shop Production
It involves the manufacturing of one or a few products within a predetermined time and cost. This is because the production takes place as per the specifications of the customer. Therefore, the products in job shop production are high in variety and low in volume. Also, they aim to meet the requirement of the specific order.
The machines are general purpose. These are set up in different departments. Further, each job has a unique technological requirement. Also, it requires processing on machines in a definite order. Its sub-classification relies on the production of job
- Only once
- At irregular intervals
- At regular intervals
Examples: Boutique, Automobile service center, typing shops, etc.
Characteristics of Job Shop Production
- Multiple varieties of products and low volume
- Machines and facilities are general purposes
- Operators are highly skilled and can perform each job in an effective manner. They take each job as a challenge due to its uniqueness.
- There is a huge stock of materials, tools, equipment, and parts.
- In-depth planning is important to determine the need of each product, and capacities for each work center, and to order priorities.
It is that type of production system in which the job passes through functional departments, in lots. These lots are nothing but batches and each lot has a different routing. It involves manufacturing a confined number of products. They are similar and produced in large volumes These products are produced at periodic intervals and stocked awaiting sales of the batches. Its sub-classification relies on the production of batches:
- Only once
- At irregular intervals
- At regular intervals
Examples: Production of tyres and tubes, ready-made garments, pharmaceuticals, and cosmetics.
Characteristics of Batch Production
- The production runs are shorter
- Flexible plant and machinery
- Plant and machinery set up are used to the product in the lot. After that, the setup undergoes a change so as to process the next batch.
- Lower lead time and cost.
Here utilization of machines and resources for producing identical products takes place. It involves the production of large quantities of products, whose demand is high. The types of continuous production are explained below:
When manufacturing of discrete parts and assemblies takes place by way of a continuous process, it is mass production. As the name signifies, the production involves a large volume so as to meet demand.
In this, the arrangement of the machine is in a line. There is the standardization of products and processes. Further, the outputs go through the same path. Also, the materials are purchased n bulk. It requires well-researched production planning.
Examples: Production of auto parts and industrial products
Characteristics of Mass Production
- Standardization of sequence of product and process
- Special purpose machines dedicated to higher production capacities and output rates
- Product volume is large
- Cycle time of production is shorter
- Lower in process inventory
- Balanced production lines
- The continuous flow of material components and parts. Also, it does not have any backtracking.
- Easy production planning and control
- Automatic material handling
The need for the product forms the basis of plant design. There is no flexibility regarding the use of resources to produce similar products. Due to this characteristic, when there is a decrease in demand, the resources cannot be used to produce other products. Therefore, it is discarded. So we can say that the plant design is specific to that product only.
Examples: Cement factory, sugar factory, chemical processing, computer keyboards, and oil refinery
Characteristics of Flow Production
- Conversion process whereby successive units of output undergo the same operation sequence.
- Use of specialized equipment positioned along the production line
Difference Between Intermittent and Continuous Production System
- Layout Type: In the case of job and batch production process layout is appropriate. Whereas for mass or flow production system product layout is best.
- Product type and design: In the case of job and batch systems, a wide range of products are produced but in small quantities. Hence, product design changes as per the specifications of the product. In contrast, for a continuous production system, either a few or one product is produced in bulk. And the design of the product is standardized, in which changes do not occur at frequent intervals.
- Machine set up time: Machine set up time is high in the continuous production system as compared to the intermittent system of production. This is due to the frequent changes in the specification of products and design.
- Order size: Order size is small in the intermittent products. Whereas the same is large in continuous production.
- Machine Investment: High in case of intermittent production and low for continuous production.
- Material Handling cost: High in the intermittent production system. However, material handling cost is low in the case of continuous production.
- Production capacity: In an intermittent production system, the production capacity is not fully utilized. But, in the continuous production system, it is completely utilized.
Above all, the production System of an enterprise uses facilities, equipment, manpower, material, and operating method to produce goods. These goods satisfy the demand of customers.