Management of the Process Productivity...

Management of the Process Productivity A process can be defined as a set of horizontal sequence of interrelated or interacting activities, which transforms inputs (needs) into outputs (results) for meeting the needs of customers or stakeholders. Inputs and intended outputs of a process can be tangible (such as equipment, materials or components) or intangible (such as energy or information). Outputs can also be unintended, such as waste or pollution.  The process needs a resource that provides the needed energy to the process for the transformation from the input to output to occur. Each process has customers and other interested parties (who may be either internal or external to the organization), with needs and expectations about the process, who define the required outputs of the process. A process is an interacting combination at any level of complexity, of people, materials, tools, machines, automation, software facilities, and procedures designed to work together for the common purpose of producing product of that quality which is needed by the customer. The process is central to the production system in the organization (Fig 1). The process instills quality in the product. Fig 1 Process of a production system The objectives of a process are normally (i) low cost operation, (ii) high performance, (iii) consistent product quality, (iv) high productivity level, (v) high yield, and (vi) product customization. An organization to function has several processes. The organization can reach its goals and objectives in an efficient and effective manner only if all the processes operate at a high level of productivity. Productivity is the quality or state of being productive. It is the measure of how specified resources are managed to accomplish timely objectives stated in terms of quality and quantity. It indicates how well the resources such as materials,...

Employee education and training...

Employee education and training Technologies are changing very fast in today’s world. Latest technologies of yesterday have become outdated today and what is latest today will change tomorrow and newer method of production will replace the traditional methods of production of today. As new technologies have advanced, new procedures and new skills are required and there is an increasing need for skilled and highly trained employees who are able to meet these changing situations in the workplace. These changes require new job requirements and new methods of working which in turn require different combination of expertise, knowledge, and skills. In this environment of growing uncertainty, organizations are to be aware of the need for their businesses to search for new answers to the problems of productivity and quality. As the technology advances, necessity arises for a higher level of skills from the employees of the organization. Studies have shown that there is a long term shift away from unskilled to highly skilled jobs with the advancement of the technology. However, despite this increasing requirement for highly skilled employees, there is evidence that the skills gap in some of the organizations is widening with a growing deficit in key or core skills, which does not augur well for the future for these organizations. Education and training are essential for the development of employees’ capabilities. Both these activities are tied closely together and mutually reinforce each other in the promotion of employees’ development. These activities develop creativity, positive attitude, and a sense of responsibility and also help the employees to attain high degree of motivation. Through these activities, employees can improve their respective skills and develop a sense of fulfillment. Good-quality education, complemented by relevant training and skills development opportunities, prepare the employees for their productive...

Employee Morale

Employee Morale Employee morale plays a vital role in the performance of the organization. Morale can be considered as the total satisfaction that the employees of the organization derive from their job, the prevailing atmosphere and the factors that appeal to them. It is a conglomeration of attitudes and feelings that constitute a reserve of physical and mental strength including factors like self-confidence, optimism and a positive mental attitude. Morale is an invisible element which determines the success or failure of the organization. Morale is a way of describing how employees feel about their jobs, management and the organization. These feelings are tied to the behaviours and attitudes which the employees show in their workplace. When employees have good morale, they feel committed to the management and the organization, loyal to their jobs and motivated to be productive. They work harder, produce more, meet deadlines and give it their all. Low morale of the employees takes a toll on employees’ performance and productivity. Employee morale is related to how the employees feel about the organization. It is an important factor in creating a healthy work environment.  Organization which has higher employee morale displays improved productivity, improved performance and creativity, reduced number of days taken for leave, higher attention to details, a safer workplace, and an increased quality of work. In addition to that, the organization has employees who arrive to work on time, communicate better, waste lesser time in gossip, have higher rate of retention, and are more creative. Moreover, employees who work with high morale develop higher rates of job satisfaction, creativeness and innovation, respect for their own job, commitment to the organization, eagerness to satisfy group objectives instead of individual objectives, and desire to improve the organizational performance. On the other hand,...

Management of Man and Machine...

Management of Man and Machine Human intervention of the production processes has undergone a big change after automatic and computerized controls have been introduced for the production processes. A large number of activities previously done by human beings have been taken over by the automation. But this has not eliminated the need for operator for the running of the equipment/process though his role has changed a lot with the automation of the process. Today mass production would not exist without the usage of automated and flexible manufacturing processes. These automated processes need machines and equipments which require human intervention for controlling them. Close and harmonious interaction by operators with their machines is a necessity for the productive output. An integrated and coordinated communication between machines and the men operating them is needed for the productive output. The complexity of industrial processes has greatly increased during the last few decades. This tendency has originated due to a number of reasons, such as (i) the enlargement of the scale of the modern plants, (ii) the required specifications dealing with the product quality, (iii) the need for the energy conservation, (iv) the requirements for the environmental pollution control, (v) the necessity of safety in the plant, and (vi) the progress in process control and informatics creating totally new possibilities. This essential change in the process operation has led to the definition of new human operator tasks. In the last thirty years, human manual control has become much less important and human supervisory control has been developed as the main concept for man and machine interactions. The tasks of the human supervisor are now predominantly cognitive ones, and contain at least the following six subtasks namely (i) the monitoring of all data presented to the human supervisor, (ii)...

Trade Unions and their Role in a Steel Plant...

Trade Unions and their Role in a Steel Plant Trade unions are independent, membership-based establishments of the employees that represent and negotiate on their behalf. They function in the organization with their presence registered with the management. They give advice when their members have problems at work, represent members in discussions with the management, and help improve wages and working conditions through negotiations.  Trade unions also make sure that the statutory requirements are met. Other functions carried out by trade unions are to arrange education and learning opportunities for the employees, promote equal opportunities at work, fight against discrimination and help to ensure a healthy and safe working environment. Many unions also provide services for their members, such as welfare benefits, personal legal help and financial services. Trade unions function on the principle that if all the employees speak with the same voice, their concerns are more likely to be addressed. This involves union members in the same workplace getting together to talk about common problems, democratically taking collective decisions on workplace issues, and putting these views to the management. It can be very difficult for employees to speak individually to the management about workplace problems and to resolve their difficulty individually even assuming that they have the confidence to raise the issue. Individual members usually elect someone to speak on their behalf (a shop representative) and to discuss their concerns with management, whereas the trade unions normally have regular formal discussions. These negotiations are referred to as ‘collective bargaining’. Trade unions are financed through the individual contributions of their members. They continually seek to recruit members (encouraging new members to join by ‘organizing’) and to build an active membership, as this give unions stronger bargaining power in negotiations with the management. Trade unions...