Recently at one of our esteemed client in Pune, India to arrive at a defined production planning system and for the want of determining the capacities of the plant, time and motion study was conducted. Though basic in nature, Time and Motion study outlines the groundwork and facilitates to arrive at better capacity awareness and robust planning system.
Each machine, every operation involving human intervention was studied for hours together. Minute details were diligently noted to understand the current situation. The study was conducted over a period of few days, where the team focused on the methodology to provide scientific and reliable solution to the client.
The back end calculations were done, were each and every operator involved in study was rated for his/her current working capabilities. Soon after the study, it was presented to the client to ascertain current capacities and plan for future.
The time study exercise indicated overall productivity for each operation was nearly 40-45%. Various improvement projects are identified and implementation will yield into overall productivity improvement up to 30%-40%.
Going back to the history and traditional definition of Time and Motion Study reveals it as “Method for establishing employee productivity standards in which (1) a complex task is broken into small, simple steps, (2) the sequence of movements taken by the employee in performing those steps is carefully observed to detect and eliminate redundant or wasteful motion, and (3) precise time taken for each correct movement is measured. From these measurements, production and delivery times and prices can be computed and incentive schemes can be devised. Generally appropriate only for repetitive tasks, time and motion studies were pioneered by the US industrial engineer Frederick Winslow Taylor (1856-1915) and developed by the husband and wife team of Frank Gilbreth (1868-1924) and Dr. Lillian Gilbreth (1878-1972).
However, traditional or basic, it forms a basis for further improvements in productivity and operations!
By Anand Bhattad
Anand is an Associate Consultant at Team Faber Infinite. He holds Masters a degree in Business Administration with majors in Operations and Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering being his first degree.