Production Planning may be said to be a technique of forecasting ahead every step in the long process of production, taking them at right time and in the right degree and trying to complete operations at the maximum efficiency In the words of Kimball and Kimball Jr – “The planning of industrial operations involves four considerations, namely, what work shall be done, how the work shall be done and lastly, when the work shall be done.” Production control is the process that keeps a watchful eye on the production flow and size of resources along with the location, of any deviation from the present action and to arrange for the prompt adjustment so that the production may run according to the original or revised schedule In the words of Henry Fayol – “Production control refers to ensuring that all which occurs is in accordance with the rules established and instructions issued.” Inputs like materials, men and machines are efficiently used Factors of production are integrated to use them economically Division of work is undertaken carefully so that every available element is properly utilised Work is regulated from the first stage of procuring raw materials to the stage of finished goods Questions like what, when and how to be manufactured are decided Determining sequence of operations for continuous production Planning plant capacity for future production programmes Issuing co-ordinated work schedules to concerned persons Maintaining sufficient inventories to support continuous flow of production Evaluating performance of workshops Maintaining production schedules to ensure delivery at proper time Preparation of production budget Devising manufacturing methods and sequence of operations Deciding type of machines and equipments Preparation of operation sheets and instruction cards Estimating men, machine and material requirements Undertaking time and motion studies Preparing master schedules Production planning and control is important for the following reasons - For Increasing Production – Main purpose of production planning is to arrange inputs. Production control programme minimises idleness of men and machines. It thus helps in raising industrial output. For co-ordinating plant activity -In planning production is carried out in a number of processes and thus activities are synchronized for smooth working. Sub-dividing the master schedule into manufacturing and subsidiary orders Routing Scheduling Despatching Expediting Tool keeping For Cost Control – A properly planned system of production will help in controlling costs by not only making full utilisation of various inputs but also by increasing output and lowering overhead expenses per unit. For Rationalisation of Production Activities – In production planning, the process of entering of raw materials and converting them into finished goods is planned in such a way that everything is done in sequence or routine. It regulates flow of inputs to run production system smoothly Following are the limitations faced by production planning and control – Based on Assumptions – Production planning and control is based on certain assumptions. In case the assumptions prove correct, the planning and control will go smoothly. But if they go wrong, process of planning and control will go weak. Rigidity – Under production planning and control, there is rigidity in the behaviour of employees and it may not help in smoothening flow of work. Difficult for small firms – This process is time consuming and therefore not affordable for small firms Costly – It is a costly device as its implementation requires separate persons to perform functions of planning, expediting, dispatching etc. Dependence on External Factors – External factors like natural calamities, change in technology, government controls etc reduce effectiveness of production planning. Planning Routing Scheduling Despatching Follow-upand Expediting Inspection It is the first element of production planning and control. Planning is deciding in advance what is to be done in future. An organisational set up is created to prepare plans and policies. Various charts, manuals and production budgets are also prepared. Planning provides a sound base for control. A separate department is set up for this work. Routing is determining the exact path which will be followed in production. It is the selection of the path from where each unit have to pass before reaching the final stage. The stages from which goods are to pass are decided in this process. In the words of ALFORD and BEATY – “Routing is the specification of the flow sequence of operations and processes to be followed in producing a particular manufacturing lot.” The following steps are taken for completing a routing procedure – Deciding what part to be made or purchased Determining Materials required Determining Manufacturing Operations and Sequences Determining of Lot Sizes Determining of Scrap Factors Analysis of Cost of the Product Preparation of Production Control Forms Scheduling is the determining of time and date when each operation is to be commenced or completed. The time and date of manufacturing each component is fixed in such a way that assembling for final product is not delayed in any way. In the words of KIMBALL and KIMBALL – “The determination of the 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.” Master Scheduling – It is the breakup of production requirements. It is the start of scheduling. It is prepared by keeping in view the order or likely sales order in near future. Manufacturing Scheduling – It is used where production process is continuous. The order of preference for manufacture is also mentioned in the schedule for a systematic production planning. Detail Operation Scheduling – It indicates the time required to perform each and every detailed operations of a given process Despatching refers to the process of actually ordering the work to be done. It involves putting the plan into effect by issuing orders. It is concerned with starting the process and operation on the basis of route sheets and schedule charts. In the words of JOHN A. SHUBIN – “Despatches put production in effect by releasing and guiding manufacturing order in the sequence previously determined by route sheets and schedules.” Following two procedures may be used for despatching – Centralised Despatching – Under this, orders are directly issued to workmen and machines. It helps in exercising effective control. Decentralised Despatching – Under this procedure all work orders are issued to the foreman or despatch clerk of the department or section. It suffers from difficulties in achieving co-ordination among different departments. “Follow up or expediting is that branch of production control procedure which regulates the progress of materials and part through the production process.” Follow up Procedure – Progress may be assessed with the help of routine reports or communication with operating departments. The follow up procedure is used for expediting and checking the progress. Inspection is the process of ensuring whether the products manufactured are of requisite quality or not. Inspection is undertaken both of products and inputs. It is carried on at various levels of production process so that pre-determined standards of quality are achieved. Inspection ensures the maintenance of pre- determined quality of products.
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