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Scale of production Learning objectives/aims You should: • be able to describe one-off, batch Scale of production Learning objectives/aims You should: • be able to describe one-off, batch and mass production. • must be able to explain how and when these production systems are used in industry. You could: • apply knowledge of industrial production systems. • should be able to answer a range of extension questions. • could be able to argue for and against globalization and summarize the impact it has on manufacturing. © Folens 2009

Scale of production • This term refers to how many of a product is Scale of production • This term refers to how many of a product is made and the manufacturing systems used to make it. • The type of system will depend on how many products are being made, what the products are, and the number and type of processes involved in production. • There are three scales of production a manufacturer might use: one-off production, batch production or mass production. © Folens 2009

One-off production Job production (also known as bespoke/haute couture/make through/made to measure/custom made/job production) One-off production Job production (also known as bespoke/haute couture/make through/made to measure/custom made/job production) What it is • • One or a small number of unique items are often made to order Usually made by an individual or small specialist team all of whom are highly skilled Advantages Disadvantage • • • High quality products with lots of attention to detail Customer gets a unique product Products take a long time to make and are therefore expensive Haute couture is made by top designers for individual clients. Products needed for special occasions, e. g. wedding dresses Products that need to have an individual fit, e. g. pilot’s uniform. Products that require attention to detail, e. g. safety items. © Folens 2009

Batch production (also known as cell production/quick response cellular production) What it is • Batch production (also known as cell production/quick response cellular production) What it is • • • Production of a specific number of a product. Workers often work in teams (or cells) focusing on one specialist skill but with the ability to do other roles if needed. Production lines often used. Advantages • • Flexible and allows production to change to meet market demands. Job is less repetitive and encourages teamwork. Workers have a wider range of skills. Bulk buying reduces costs. Most high street textiles products are made using this method. It produces identical products in a range of standard sizes which are suitable for most people. It is called ‘off the peg’/‘ready to wear’. Disadvantages • • Equipment needs to be restarted after a production run. Time can be lost while machines, and so on are adapted for new styles. © Folens 2009

Mass production (also known as high volume production, repetitive or continual flow production) What Mass production (also known as high volume production, repetitive or continual flow production) What it is • • Producing large numbers • of identical items, often 24 hours a day. Production lines used with • workers skilled in one area. Advantages Materials can be bought in bulk which reduces costs. Can often use fully automated machines and workers with limited skills. Disadvantages • • Expensive to set up or if production is interrupted. Mostly used where fashion changes and changes in market demand are limited and predictable. Products where fashions don’t change regularly, e. g. socks, tea towels. Products that are component parts of other products, e. g. yarn, buttons, fabric. © Folens 2009

Just-in-time production (JIT) • JIT is where resources and stock are not stored but Just-in-time production (JIT) • JIT is where resources and stock are not stored but are ordered or manufactured as they are needed. This is sometimes called ‘fast fashion’ because it enables products to be manufactured and sent out to shops quickly. • This system relies heavily on computer information and accurate records so that there are no hold ups in the system. Barcodes on products and resources and the use of computerized tills are a key part to the success of JIT production. • Advantages are that there is a reduced need for storage space, which reduces costs and gives more space for production. The amount of left-over stock or money tied up in unused resources is reduced. Manufacturing is also more flexible and changes can be made to meet current market demands. © Folens 2009

Production lines (1) • Batch and mass production uses assembly lines/production lines, where workers Production lines (1) • Batch and mass production uses assembly lines/production lines, where workers specialize in producing one section of a product and then pass the work on to the next worker. • This makes manufacturing very quick and efficient. • Sometimes a production line can be made up from a small team who share tasks and are more multi-skilled, or from individuals who are responsible for only one area of manufacturing. © Folens 2009

Production lines (2) • Subassembly lines are where a section of a product is Production lines (2) • Subassembly lines are where a section of a product is made elsewhere in the factory or even in a different factory completely, e. g. embroidered logos made in one factory and sewn onto a product in the main factory. • This means the manufacturer doesn’t have to invest in expensive technology. © Folens 2009

Eton hanging system • • Production lines use different systems to pass the work Eton hanging system • • Production lines use different systems to pass the work from one worker to the next. Traditionally sections of a product would be bundled together or put into a moveable container which, when full, would be taken to the next worker. The Eton hanging system is a computerized hanging system that automatically moves the work from one worker to the next on overhead hanging rails. Look at the website www. eton. se/ to read about the Eton hanging system and to see an animation showing the Eton hanging system visit www. eton. se/The. Eton. System/AWalk. html © Folens 2009

Manufacturing costs • • There is a variety of manufacturing costs that affect the Manufacturing costs • • There is a variety of manufacturing costs that affect the selling price of a product. Fixed costs are those that do not change and which can be predicted, e. g. rent/mortgage, loans. Variable costs are those that are unpredictable and depend on what is being produced and how many are made, e. g. labour, packaging, transport, materials, energy. When large numbers of products are made manufacturers can buy resources in bulk at reduced prices and this reduces the overall costs of manufacture. This is called economies of scale. To reduce manufacturing costs a company might buy in bulk, reduce/replace the amount of time-consuming techniques (especially any hand finishing, e. g. embroidery) or substitute cheaper materials/components. The use of standardized designs and blocks reduces production costs. This means that a basic template or pattern that has been used before is adapted into a new product. © Folens 2009

Globalization and manufacturing costs • • Globalization is a term that refers to a Globalization and manufacturing costs • • Globalization is a term that refers to a company being able to work on an international scale. Many companies have head offices in one country, source materials from a range of countries, manufacture in countries where labour costs are cheaper and then sell their products across the world. The Internet and ICT play a key role in the success of globalization. Good systems are also essential to enable the company to monitor manufacturing abroad. Globalization can reduce manufacturing costs as it enables a company to source the cheapest materials and labour. © Folens 2009

Advantages of globalization • • The advantages of working globally are that there may Advantages of globalization • • The advantages of working globally are that there may be skills available in a particular country that might not be available in the home country. Materials might also be more easily available, especially if they are grown or made there and this saves on transport and storage costs. A company manufacturing abroad brings money into a country. Often a company also brings along new technology and skills, training up the workers, which often the host country can’t afford to do. Once one company sets up in a country it often attracts similar companies which helps to develop that area. In countries where wages are high it is expensive to produce items that have a lot of time-consuming hand work. By using countries where wages are lower, costs can be reduced greatly without having to change the design. © Folens 2009

Disadvantages of globalization • • • Countries such as the UK have a minimum Disadvantages of globalization • • • Countries such as the UK have a minimum wage and it can be beneficial for a company to manufacture in a country where this is not the case. Sometimes this means that a company can take advantage of this situation and exploit its workers. Note, however, that low pay does not automatically mean poor conditions; many companies use the savings to fund good working conditions. Manufacturing globally can make it harder for a company to be sure that these things aren’t happening. Some countries have less rigorous environmental controls than the UK, which means that dangerous working practices, pollution, and so on, may not be as carefully monitored. Companies can take advantage of this as it reduces their costs as they don’t have to meet strict laws and regulations. By manufacturing abroad rather than at home companies are reducing the number of jobs available to workers in the home country. © Folens 2009