Which operations management technique has as its goal to design the machine-worker interface so as to increase production efficiency?


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Deborah Mann answered
  • Facilities design and layout
This covers all aspects of man and machine interaction, and the improvement of the efficiency of this interaction. It has many facets, being a discipline all of its own.

  • The ease of expansion or change in the future
Facilities need to be designed from the ground up at inception to be easily upgraded and expanded to meet any changes in production needs. This work is not always done lightly, as it is a major investment, but the fact that a redesign is often necessary cannot be ignored. Facilities layout and design specialists will minimize the impact of any changes to a facility on production.

  • Movement Flow
Facility designs should show recognition of the smooth process flow. Factory facilities should ideally show raw materials going in at one end and finished goods and products out of the other end.

This identifies a logical progression of materials and processes in a spatial way: It is counterproductive to have goods moving erratically around, ending up in places where they have to be physically moved to the next part of the manufacturing process.

If correctly applied, this will in turn reduce the paper trail for the manufactured wares.

  • The Handling of Materials
This should be made as simple as possible to make sure efficient and timely use can be made of materials as soon as they are deployed. Small businesses are especially vulnerable to this.

  • Output Needs.
Layout should help a business in its production goals and needs, not hinder it.

  • Space Utilization.
This is to ensure that lanes for traffic are wide enough, to ensuring that inventory storage warehouses or rooms are able to utilize as much vertical space as they can, but without going beyond the business's abilities to access the same.

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