Here is a compilation of essays on ‘Production Management’. Find paragraphs, long and short essay on ‘Production Management’ especially written for school and college students.
Essay on Production Management
- Essay on the Meaning of Production Management
- Essay on the Definition of Production Management
- Essay on the Scope of Production Management
- Essay on the Functions of Production Management
- Essay on the Historical Development of Production Management
- Essay on the Decision Making in Production Management
Essay # 1. Meaning of Production Management:
Production means the conversion of raw materials into finished products with the help of certain processes. The main purpose of any production system is to produce the desired goods and services effectively and efficiently. In order to achieve this purpose, it is essential to plan, organise, direct and control the production system which is the task of production management.
Production management ensures the conversion of various inputs into outputs which will satisfy the wants of the customers. The difference between the value of the inputs and the value of the outputs represents the contribution of the production system. Any production system must try to maximise the contribution of the value added to the inputs.
Production management involves planning, organising, directing and controlling the activities relating to the production function. The individual who is given the responsibility to manage the production function is designated as Production Manager.
Since production is a technical-managerial activity, the production manager should have both the technical and managerial qualifications and skills. That is why, generally, technical personnel with managerial skills, are appointed as production managers.
Production management can be classified into two major phases:
(i) Managerial function regarding the design of the production system; and
(ii) Operation and control of the production system, i.e., production planning and control.
Essay # 2. Definition of Production Management:
The following definitions of Production Management try to explain main characteristics of production management:
(i) In the words of Mr. E. L. Brech:
“Production Management is the process of effective planning and regulating the operations of that section of an enterprise which is responsible for the actual transformation of materials into finished products.”
This definition limits the scope of production management to those activities of an enterprise which is associated with the transformation process of inputs into output. The definition does not include the human factors involved in a production process. It lays stress on materialistic features only.
(ii) Production Management deals with decision making related to production process. So that the resulting goods and services are produced in accordance with the quantitative specifications and demand schedule with minimum cost. According to this definition design and control of the production system are two main functions of production management.
(iii) Production Management is a set of general principles for production economies, facility design, job design, schedule design, quality control, inventory control, and work study and cost and budgetary control. This definition explains the main areas of an enterprise where the principles of production management can be applied. This definition clearly points out that production management is not a set of techniques.
It is evident from above definitions that production planning and its control are the main characteristics of production management. In the case of poor planning and control of production activities the organisation may not be able to attain its objectives and may result in loss of customer’s confidence and retardation in the progress of the establishment.
Essay # 3. Scope of Production Management:
Production function of management involves a wide range of activities from the plant location to the packing of products to be distributed by the marketing department of the enterprise.
Production management includes the following operations:
(i) Design of Product:
It is the top management which determines the product to be produced by the firm. But the designing of the product is the responsibility of the production manager. Product designing deals with form and function. The form design deals with product’s shape and appearance whereas the functional design deals with its working.
(ii) Design of Production System:
Production system is the framework within which the conversion of inputs into output occurs. There are three basic kinds of production system, namely, (a) process production (b) job production, and (c) intermittent production. The choice of a production system will depend upon the type of product to be produced and the scale of production carried on by the firm.
(iii) Production Planning and Control:
It deals with the determination and regulation of production processes. After the production system has been designed and activated, the production manager is concerned with production planning. He established the sequence of operations of each individual item, part or assembly and lays down the schedule of its completion.
Production planning is followed by production control. Production control is a process by which actual performance is compared with the pre-determined standards.
The production manager has to apply control in these important areas:
(a) Control of inventories,
(b) Control of flow of raw-materials into the plan, and
(c) Control of work-in-process.
(iv) Selection of Location:
Plant should be located at such a place where production and distribution costs are the minimum. Costs which influence the locational decision include cost of land, rental value, transportation cost, labour cost, cost of water and power, etc. Other factors which influence the selection of location are: process units, process outputs, process requirements, Government policy, availability of site, personal preferences, etc.
(v) Layout of Plant:
The layout of plant represents an arrangement of machines and facilities. The layout of plant should be efficient to achieve economy and efficiency in operations of the production department. An efficient layout is one that allows materials to move through the necessary operations rapidly and in the most direct way possible.
It takes care of the intensity of in-process items and tries to shorten all heavily travelled routes. The type of layout depends mainly upon the type of production system adopted by the production department.
(vi) Selection of Plant and Equipment:
The selection of plant and equipment depends upon:
(a) What is available or what can be made available, i.e., technological feasibility constraints, and
(b) What is economically reasonable, i.e., cost constraints.
The quality of output, life of the machine and adaptability of the facilities are also important considerations.
(vii) Research and Development:
By research we mean critical investigation in order to acquire new knowledge. Applied research explores information for the practical problems in mind and thus is directed to achieve immediate solutions to practical problems. Development comes after applied research. It involves design and fabrication of new products and then testing their usefulness keeping in view the needs and demands of customers.
Essay # 4. Functions of Production Management:
The concept of production management is related mainly to the organisations engaged in production of goods and services. Earlier these organisations were mostly in the form of one-man shops having insignificant problems of managing the production.
But with development and expansion of production organisations in the shape of factories more complicated problems like location and layout, inventory control, quality control, routing and scheduling of the production process etc. came into existence which required more detailed analysis and study of the whole phenomenon.
This resulted in the development of production management in the area of factory management. In the beginning the main function of production management was to control labour costs, which at that time constituted the major proportion of costs associated with production.
But with development of factory system towards mechanisation and automation the indirect labour costs increased tremendously in comparison to direct labour costs e.g. designing and packing of the products, production and inventory control, plant layout and location, transportation of raw materials and finished products etc. The planning and control of all these activities required more expertise and special techniques.
In modern times production management has to perform a variety of functions, namely:
1. Design and development of production process.
2. Production planning and control.
3. Implementation of the plan and related activities to produce the desired output.
4. Administration and co-ordination of the activities of various components and departments responsible for producing the necessary goods and services.
However, the responsibility of determining the output characteristics and the distribution strategy followed by an organisation including pricing and selling policies are normally outside the scope of Production Management.
Production management had been progressing through a series of names like:
Essay # 5. Historical Development of Production Management:
Production process responsible for producing goods and services in desired qualities has development rapidly both in size and quality. Well known economist Adam smith was the first person to introduce the concept of production economies in factory system by emphasizing the importance of division of labour in his pioneering work. “The Wealth of Nations in the year 1776.”
Gradually the people started realizing the advantages of large scale industrial establishments and the role of specialization in improving the quality and quantity of goods and services produced. It was observed that specialized efforts on machines and tools were more useful and productive.
Charles Babbage in his book “The Economics and Manufacture” published in 1883 also agreed with the Adam Smith concept of division of labour but he also advocated the principle of limiting skills as a basis for pay fixation.
Mr. E.W. Taylor, who started this career as industrial worker, contributed a lot in the development of management techniques. He proposed the use of scientific techniques for evolving efficient methods of production and evaluation of production costs. According to him the work method techniques should be determined by the investigation procedure.
He outlined the duties of management in an enterprise as:
(i) Scientific study for each activity/action of worker instead of old rule of thumb method.
(ii) The workers should not be allowed to evolve their own way of performing the desired operations. The management to get the best results from the workers should evolve proper selection, training and development programmes.
(iii) There should be close cooperation and understanding between the workers and the management.
(iv) The importance of specialisation and expertise to carry different operations in a production process should be realised and the division of work as well as the responsibility should be equally shared by the workers and the management.
Even today the four duties of management outlined by Taylor are found to be of great use and immense value in managerial organisations. One cannot say that the situation was ever different. The first concept of Taylor can be applied in the field of engineering methods and work measurement.
It further improved and developed with psychological and physical researches. Concepts number two and three are still applicable in the areas of personnel management for the selection and placement of staff and in industrial relations. The last concept regarding division of work between management and the workers has far reaching implications.
Taylor believed in the general philosophical approach and according to him specific discoveries were applicable in scientific management of individual situations only. His concepts proved their worth in many pioneering experiments in the field of production management. Though, there are numerous followers of Taylor’s ideology but due to his compromising attitude many writers and thinkers are his critics also.
Taylor’s approach towards production management was very slow in development. Till that time sufficient knowledge and requisite tools to study the phenomenon were not available. Furthermore, output had to depend only on man, job and job conditions. Thus exclusive application of operation-oriented analysis continued unabated for many years.
Gradually there was a shift in the approach with more emphasis on the concept of production process than on operations. Both at the operation and process levels of analysis several new dimensions were added.
It was realised that in planning a production process, some degree of risk and uncertainty is always associated. This risk and uncertainty can be analysed with the help of probability. Moreover due to many uncontrollable factors there is always unpredictable variation in the output.
Probability and statistical methods were considered to be appropriate tools to measure and analyse such variations. Using the concept of probability and statistics can solve many production problems in present set up.
With development in technology and expansion of enterprises the production process became more complex. Many interrelated factors came into existence and that made the analysis very difficult.
To solve the problems suitable mathematical techniques were needed. F.W. Harris in 1914 evolved economic lot size method to control the inventory of an enterprise. The method was further developed by F.E. Raymond but application of the method in practice was not general.
There were two new developments of great significance inl930’s, namely:
(i) Introduction of Statistical quality control by Walter She wart in 1931.
(ii) Development of sampling theory by L.H.C. Tippet in 1934.
Statistical quality control was introduced in controlling the quality of the product during World War II whereas the sampling techniques found application in production analysis in 1950.
There was rapid development in the concepts theory and techniques of production management after World War II. The operation research techniques evolved during defense operations in World War II found useful application in industrial operations, e.g. linear programming and net work analysis.
Queuing theory, inventory analysis, replacement, methods found useful avenues in the formalization and analysis of various production problems. Advent of computers introduced the field of automation.
The demand of manpower in defence operations in Second World War necessitated evolving production systems requiring lesser labour force. This resulted in detailed time and motion studies and standard machine tool designs to improve the efficiency of reduced work force.
Essay # 6. Decision Making in Production Management:
The production strategy can be planned in a number of ways and the organisation wants to select the best course of action. The decision making process involves proper analysis of these alternatives and then to select the most suitable alternative. Thus decision making is the art of taking rational decisions using various scientific and analytical techniques. Here a rational decision for any organisation is one with which the management can achieve its goals with minimum efforts of time and money.
The management should be able to evaluate the risk associated with each alternative and the one with minimum risk should be preferred. In the opinion of Herbert Simon decision making and management appears to synonymous terms.
Decision-making approach in production management mainly consists of following steps:
A single unified awareness is derived from sensory processes about the phenomenon under consideration.
It is the scheme or design of formulating ideas or concepts about the phenomenon generated from comprehension.
The ideas or concepts from conception provide many alternative choices. The procedure of collected information about the possible outcomes from these alternatives and then to compare-their merits and demerits is known as investigation.
This implies the mental weighing and assessment of merits and consequences of various schemes.
Investigation and deliberation provides the guidelines to select the best alternative for the given situation keeping in view the overall interest of the organisation.
This is the final stage of decision-making process. The information about the alternative selected is communicated to the concerned people for using it to get the desired solution.
In recent years a production manager is generally involved in making decisions under unpredictable and uncertain situation. There are many considerations or factors associated with the final choice and the decision maker must be fully acquainted with these factors.
The decision making process can be divided in two categories:
(i) Based on judgement and intuition and
(ii) Based on some quantitative methods. In production management in most of the cases a combination of the two approaches is necessary.