Definitions in Operations Management
OPERATIONS: Any activity that transforms and adds value to an input stream. The input stream can be a physical entities, services, or flows. The valued added transformation produces products or services that are designed to meet a customer demand. Operations range from processing loan applications to production of computers, to designing buildings.
FLOW SHOP: An operation that produces products at volume in a continuous flow or by a well-defined, connected sequence of activities or processes.
FLOW TIME: The average (actual) time for a unit of production to flow through a process unit or activity including input and output inventories. Theoretical Flow Time is the flow time without inventories.
FLOW TIME EFFICIENCY: The ratio of theoretical flow time to the actual flow time through a process.
JOB SHOP: Job shops refer to those operations where each order is more or less unique and where the volumes are small or only one order. The clearest example of a job shop is a construction firm that constructs unique buildings. The book manufacturing industry is another example of a job shop if the production runs are small as is the case for a textbook. The automotive, appliance, towel, petroleum refining, and computer industries are examples of repetitive manufacturing. See also repetitive manufacturing. Several industries have characteristics of both repetitive manufacturing and job shops in their operations. Even in job shops, standardized materials, machines, and tooling and fixtures are desirable. Standard sizes, capacities, and performance are characteristic of the construction industry. Also, either industry may incur high tooling costs. Even in the construction industry, repetitive manufacturing is gaining as modular assemblies are replacing craftwork in many of the subassemblies.
LINE BALANCING: In a production or process operation line with several processes, machines, or operations in sequence, the...
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