1(a). The word measure is defined as the process of approximating or estimating the magnitude of an object in relation with some units of measurement. I t usually involves the assignment of nun-negative real numbers to the subsets
The term productivity is also defined as the measure of the production process output divided by the number of unit of input. For instant, labor productivity is usually measured as the ratio of the labor output per hour and input. Therefore, the quantitative aspects of the input and output are put into consideration (Christopher Voss (1984). Generally, productivity of higher education is defined in terms of how much individuals and the society as a whole are gaining from the educational sector, considering the resources that they employ. It also shows whether the system is wasteful in any way as well.
The issue of productivity is looked at in two dimensions. That is, the efficiency perspective and the effectiveness perspective. Efficiency looks at the level as well as the quality of the education services obtained from the available resources. A sector that produces higher quality or greater quantity of outputs using the same resources, then it said to have improved efficiency.
On the other hand, effectiveness focuses on the extent which the needs and demands of the customers are met by the providers. The stakeholders in this case include the students, local communities, faculty, the state governments and the nation at large. Therefore, it’s clear that productivity improvement is a multidimensional process which depends on the goals and missions of the particular system at hand.
Under measure productivity, the general approach that is employed mostly is the development of measures of both the effectiveness and efficiency. These measures are then employed together so that productivity improvement is measured. Through the use of input and output measures, there could be either the technical efficiency ratios used to measure the physical output per unit input, or the use of economical efficiency ratios that compare and contrast the outcomes to the inputs.
However, the present problems that hinder the measure of the input and the output do not make easy for the creation of these measures. Therefore, it is necessary to rely on direct measures where the resources employed by the industry are put across together with the outcome and the quality of the services.
In situations where the industry produces multiple outputs, these outputs are always weighted using some criterion and then summed.
b). Looking at the relationship between strategy and operations management, we first define the terms. The word strategy refers to the long term plan of actions that is designed to meet the set aims and goals. On the other hand, operations management refers to the process of ensuring that all the activities that are meant to be carried on in the industry are carried on in to achieve the set up goals and regulations.
For the operation management process to be successful there has to be the long term goals that must be strategically set. These goals are the key drives of all the processes that take place in the entire industry. Therefore, the strategy used should be the one that is achievable and relevant to the operations at hand.
The production management process should also be in line with the long term action plans that are set so that it will be easier to meet the set goals. The process should be handled in a formal manner in order to promote or make the whole production process easier. These set goals as well as the long term actions should be made known to the employees of the company and the public as well so that they can contribute towards the achievement of the same.
For instant, in a higher education industry, they should set long term actions to produce the best students or to be the best research institutions. The goals set should be those that are achievable and the community as well as the students, the lecturers and the non teaching staff should all be informed about all these.
c). The terms Cost of Poor Quality (COPQ) refers to the costs that are generated due to the production of defective materials. These include those costs that are used in bridging the gap between the desired and actual service quality and products. It also consists of the costs of losses in terms of the opportunities caused by the loss of recourses that are later used to correct the defects.
COPQ includes all the labor costs, the rework costs, material costs and the disposition costs. However, it does not include the detection as well as the prevention cost. For instant, in the tourism industry can have the COPQ whereby the services offered to the tourists are not to the standard due to lack of enough accommodation or workers. Hence, to rectify this, they employ more workers and build up or renovate their buildings in order to improve there services.
On the other hand the term cost of quality is widely used but mostly misunderstood. It is defined as the cost of not creating a quality product or services. This cost increases every time work is redone. For instant, in the tourism industry, they incur this cost when their workers fail to offer perfect services to the tourists as they may end up being discouraged from visiting the country again.
d). A toy market that is ready to sell its new products has to follow different procedures in order to reduce the time that it will re quire to sell these products. First, there will be need for a massive advertisement either in the papers, televisions and live shows so that they can inform the consumers on the products. This in tern will keep the potential customers aware of the products in a manner that they will be encouraged to purchase these products that they will need to purchase.
Another main point that the toy manufacturing company should take into consideration is the quality of the toys that they produce and sell to the customers. The toys that of good quality will definitely take less time as compared to the toys of bad quality.
The price of the products, that is the price which the toys are disposed at will also affect the time that the products will take in the market. Cheap or affordable products will take short time in the market as compared to the expensive products or unaffordable products. When the company that is manufacturing the toys plans the type of toys that they produce, they should take into consideration the technology at hand and the age that they are targeting. For instant, toys are basically meaningful to the young children hence should be designed in a manner that they will be attractive to the children and can be handled by them as well. This will definitely reduce the marketing time for the new products.
2). The three basic capacity expansion strategies include the process focused strategy, the repetitive focused strategy, and the product focused strategy. These are all aimed at improving the production management and control systems as a whole. Under the process focused strategy, the available facilities are organized by the process itself and all the similar processes are put together. There is also the presence of a low volume, but high variety products, as well as the presence of a jumbled flow. This strategy has its merits and demerits in general. The advantages of this strategy are:
Availability of great product flexibility that ensures that the products are modified incase of any need.
Availability of more general equipment that are used to handle many tasks at a time.
And there is room for low capital investment thus even the poor can afford to invest in the business.
The disadvantages are:
Need for very highly trained personnel which expensive to higher and fire.
Availability of more difficulty production planning control process that needs a lot of money to run and consumes a lot of time.
And poor equipment control process hence more expense to organization since these equipments may spoil any time or get lost.
Under the repetitive focused strategy, the facilities are often organized by the use of assembly lines. It is mainly characterized by the use modules which are combined for many output options (Philip E. Hicks (1919).
The advantages of this strategy are that it is seen to be more structured than the process focused strategy and enables Quasi-customization. It also enjoys economical advantage of a continuous process since it makes maximum use of modules.
The product focused strategy has facilities that are organized by the products (Jay Hezier (1996). There is also room for high volume, low variety products and is usually found in the discrete unit manufacturing company and the continuous process of manufacturing.The advantages of this strategy include:
Lower variable costs per unit which reduce the production costs in general leading to reduction in selling prices.
Availability of lower but more specialized labor skills hence production is efficient and meets the demands of the consumer.
Possibility of easier production planning and control hence saves time and reduces production cost as well.
And the presence of equipment utilization and maintenance.
The disadvantages are:
High probability of lower product flexibility
Need for more specialized equipments that are expensive
And need for a very high capital investment thus closes doors for the poor in the society.
3). It is not easy for the jobs to be designed as well as be incorporated in order to meet all the characteristics in the principles. However, it is important to note that jobs should form a coherent whole independently or through involving the related jobs. The whole performance of the job should ensure that there is a significant contribution to the completion the services and the products (Meric S. Gertler (2004). It should also ensure that there is provision of a variety of pace, location, method and skills that are necessary. It should also provide feedback of the performance to the other people directly. Discretion and time control should be given chance as well as the sequence and the pace of work efforts.
The job should also ensure that some responsibility for outcomes is included; there is room for learning and problem solving within the competence of the individual. It should also be done in a way that it leads towards a desirable future. The individuals should be free to develop in a way that they find relevant. Job specialization is defined as the process of separation of the organizational activities into tasks that are distinct and involves the process of assigning different tasks to different people. On the other hand, job enrichment is seen as the motivation of employees by giving opportunities to them in order to range heir abilities. For instant, in an institution that deals with learning, there are different departments that deal with different things at a time. Each department has its heads that are the key decision makers.
A job that is enriched has a variety of tasks as well as varying challenges in difficulties, a meaningful work, has a feedback, encouragement and good communication. Job enrichment includes the process of turning the employees’ efforts into performance, links the employee’s performance to the rewards directly, and makes sure that the employees are interested in the reward. For instant, in an organization, employees who have performed well in their work are given promotions at the end of a certain period of time in order to motivate them.
On the other hand, job specialization ensures that the employees are good in a particular section as compared to the other sections hence can work best when given the chance of working there. In most cases, it does not involve rewards but takes into consideration the ability of the employee and the experiences at hand (Richard B. Chase (1998). Job specialization also ensures that there is decentralization of activities and powers. Decisions here are made at the different levels depending on who is in charge of the area affected. This does not apply to the case of job enrichment since the main aim here is to motivate the employees
Richard B. Chase (1998). Production and Operation Management. McGraw-Hill College, ISBN007517102
Jay Hezier (1996). Production and Operation Management. Prentice Hall PTR, ISBN0132444844.
Meric S. Gertler (2004). Manufacturing Culture: The Institutional Geography of Industrial Practice. Oxford University Press, ISBN0198233825.
The Encyclopedia Americana: A Library of Universal Knowledge, page 484.
Philip E. Hicks (1919). Industrial Engineering and Management. McGraw-Hill, ISBN0070288070.
Christopher Voss (1984). Research in Production/Operations Management. Gower Pub. Co., U.S.A, ISBN 0566007592