OPERATIONS PLANNING AND CONTROL

OPERATIONS PLANNING AND CONTROL

Objectives:
By the end of the chapter the student should be able to:
(i) Distinguish between operations planning and control
(ii) Explain the activities involved in operations planning
(iii) Explain the activities involved in operations control
(iv) Outline the benefits of operations planning and control
Introduction
Planning and control are different but very closely related. Planning is the theoretical end of the activity, while control is the more applied end. Planning involves deciding what to do and when to do it. Control involves making sure that plans are actually taking place in practice and responding when things do not according to plan. Planning looks at activities sometime in the future. Control looks at activities that are happening now. (Of course „now‟ can mean this minute, this hour, today, this week, this month, etc. It is all relative). The point being that there is an immediacy about control that is not there in planning. However, because control involves taking circumstances into account and re-planning, control inevitably involves making plans (or more accurately, making new plans). Planning and control involve generally the organization and planning of manufacturing process. Especially it consists of the planning of routing, scheduling, dispatching inspection, and coordination, control of materials, methods machines, tools and operating times. The ultimate objective is the organization of the supply and movement of materials and labour, machines utilization and related activities, in order to bring about the desired manufacturing results in terms of quality, quantity, time and place.
Benefits of planning and control
(1) Optimum Utilisation of Capacity: With the help of Planning and Control [PPC] the operations manager can schedule his tasks and production runs and thereensure that his productive capacity does not remain idle and there is no undue queuing up of tasks via proper allocation of tasks to the production facilities. No order goes unattended and no machine remains idle.
(2) Inventory control: Proper planning and control will help to resort to just- in- time systems and therereduce the overall inventory. It will ensure the right supplies are available at the right time.
(3) Economy in production time: planning and control will help to reduce the cycle time and increase the turnover via proper scheduling.
(4) Ensure quality: good planning and control will provide for adherence to the quality standards
so that quality of output is ensured.
Constraints on the planning and control task
Cost constraints – products and services must be produced within an identified cost.
 Capacity constraints – products and services must be produced within the designed capacity limits of the operation.
 Timing constraints – products and services must be produced within the time when they still have value for the customer.
 Quality constraints – products and services must conform to the designed tolerance limits of the product or service.
Steps in the planning and control
Production Planning involves:
Planning
Routing
Scheduling
Loading
Production control involves:
Dispatching
Following up
Inspection
Corrective
Production planning: Production planning may be defined as the technique of foreseeing every step in a long series of separate operations, each step to be taken at the right time and in the right place and each operation to be performed in maximum efficiency. It helps to work out the quantity of material manpower, machine and money requires for producing predetermined level of output in given period of time.
Routing: Under this, the operations, their path and sequence are established. To perform these operations the proper class of machines and personnel required are also worked out. The main aim of routing is to determine the best and cheapest sequence of operations and to ensure that this sequence is strictly followed. Routing procedure involves following different activities.
(1) An analysis of the article to determine what to make and what to buy.
(2) To determine the quality and type of material
(3) Determining the manufacturing operations and their sequence.
(4) A determination of lot sizes
(5) Determination of scrap factors
(6) An analysis of cost of the article
(7) Organization of production control forms.
Scheduling: It means working out of time that should be required to perform each operation and also the time necessary to perform the entire series as routed, making allowances for all factors concerned. It mainly concerns with time element and priorities of a job. The pattern of scheduling differs from one job to another which is explained as below:
(a) Production schedule: The main aim is to schedule that amount of work which can easily be handled plant and equipment without interference. Its not independent decision as it takes into account following factors.
(1) Physical plant facilities of the type required to process the material being scheduled.
(2) Personnel who possess the desired skills and experience to operate the equipment and perform the type of work involved.
(3) Necessary materials and purchased parts.
(b) Master Schedule: Scheduling usually starts with preparation of master schedule which is weekly or monthly break-down of the production requirement for each product for a definite time period, having this as a running record of total production requirements the entrepreneur is in better position to shift the production from one product to another as per the changed production requirements. This forms a base for all subsequent scheduling acclivities. A master schedule is followed operator schedule which fixes total time required to do a piece of work with a given machine or which shows the time required to do each detailed operation of a given
job with a given machine or process.
(c) Manufacturing schedule: It is prepared on the basis of type of manufacturing process involved. It is very useful where single or few products are manufactured repeatedly at regular intervals. Thus it would show the required quality of each product and sequence in which the same to be operated
(d) Scheduling of Job order manufacturing: Scheduling acquires greater importance in job order manufacturing. This will enable the speedy execution of job at each center point. Scheduling is of utmost importance as it brings out efficiency in the operations and reduces cost price. The small entrepreneur should maintain four types of schedules to have a close scrutiny of all stages namely an enquiry schedule, a production schedule, a shop schedule and an arrears schedule out of above four, a shop schedule is the most important most suited to the needs of small scale industry as it enables a foreman to see at a glance.
1. The total load on any section
2. The operational sequence
3. The stage, which any job has reached.
Loading: The next step is the execution of the schedule plan as per the route chalked out it includes the assignment of the work to the operators at their machines or work places. So loading determines who will do the work as routing determines where and scheduling determines when it shall be done. Gantt Charts are most commonly used in small industries in order to determine the existing load and also to foresee how fast a job can be done. The usefulness of their technique lies in the fact that they compare what has been done and what ought to have been done. Production control: Production control is the process of planning production in advance of operations, establishing the extract route of each individual item part or assembly, setting, starting and finishing for each important item, assembly or the finishing production and releasing the necessary orders as well as initiating the necessary follow-up to have the smooth function of the enterprise. The production control is of complicated nature in small industries.
The production planning and control department can function at its best only when the work manager, the purchase manager, the personnel manager and the financial controller assist in planning production activities. The production controller directly reports to the works
Dispatching: Dispatching involves issue of production orders for starting the operations.
Necessary authority and conformation is given for:
1. Movement of materials to different workstations.
2. Movement of tools and fixtures necessary for each operation.
3. Beginning of work on each operation.
4. Recording of time and cost involved in each operation.
5. Movement of work from one operation to another in accordance with the route sheet.
6. Inspecting or supervision of work
Dispatching is an important step as it translates production plans into production.
Follow up: Every production programme involves determination of the progress of work, removing bottlenecks in the flow of work and ensuring that the productive operations are taking place in accordance with the plans. It spots delays or deviations from the production plans. It helps to reveal detects in routing and scheduling, misunderstanding of orders and instruction, under loading or overloading of work etc. All problems or deviations are investigated and remedial measures are undertaken to ensure the completion of work the planned date.
Inspection: This is mainly to ensure the quality of goods. It can be required as effective agency of production control.
Corrective measures: Corrective action may involve any of those activities of adjusting the route, rescheduling of work changing the workloads, repairs and maintenance of machinery or equipment, control over inventories of the cause of deviation is the poor performance of the employees. Certain personnel decisions like training, transfer, demotion etc. may have to be taken. Alternate methods may be suggested to handle peak loads.
Review questions
1. Highlight the Benefits of planning and control
2. Outline the Constraints on the planning and control task
3. Describe the Steps in the planning and control
4. Outline the activities involved Production control
5. Outline the activities involved in Production Planning
References
Christopher, M. and Towill, D. (2001) An integrated model for the design of agile supply
chains, International Journal of Physical Distribution and Logistics Management, 31(4), 235- 246.
Krafcik, J.F. (1988) Triumph of the lean production system, Sloan Management Review, Fall, 41-52.
Ohno, T. 1988 Toyota Production System: Beyond Large-Scale Production, Productivity Press. Bicheno,J.(2008) TheLean Toolbox for Service Systems, PICSIEBooks.

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