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Objectives and Principles of Plant Layout

Objectives and Principles of Plant Layout
Info on Objectives and #Principles of Plant Layout: Plant layout refers to the physical arrangement of production facilities. It is the configuration of departments, work centres and equipment in the conversion process. It is a floor plan of the physical facilities, which are used in production. A plant layout study is an engineering study used to analyze different physical configurations for a manufacturing plant. It is also known as Facilities Planning and Layout. Some Precise Definitions for Plant Layout: According to Moore “Plant layout is a plan of an optimum arrangement of facilities including personnel, operating equipment, storage space, material handling equipment and all other supporting services along with the design of best structure to contain all these facilities”. “Plant layout is the #arrangement of machines, work areas and service areas within a factory”. —George R. Terry “Plant layout involves the development of physical relationship among building, equipment and production operations, which will enable the manufacturing process to be carried on efficiently”. —Morris E. Hurley “Plant layout can be defined as a technique of locating machines, processes and plant services within the factory so as to achieve the greatest possible output of high quality at the lowest possible total cost of manufacturing”. —Sprigal and Lansburg “Plant layout ideally involves the allocation of space and the arrangement of equipment in such a manner that overall operations cost can be minimised.” —J. Lundy From these definitions it is clear that plant layout is arrangement and optimum utilisation of available resources in such a manner so as to ensure maximum output with minimum input. Objectives of Plant Layout: The primary goal of the plant layout is to maximise the profit by arrangement of all the plant facilities to the best advantage of total manufacturing of the product. The objectives of plant layout are: Streamline the #flow of materials through the plant. Facilitate the manufacturing process. Maintain high turnover of in-process inventory. Minimise materials handling and cost. Effective utilisation of men, equipment and space. Make effective utilisation of cubic space. Flexibility of manufacturing operations and arrangements. Provide for employee convenience, #safety and comfort. Minimize investment in equipment. Minimize overall production time. Maintain flexibility of arrangement and operation. Facilitate the #organizational structure. Principles of Plant Layout: Principle of integration: A good layout is one that integrates men, materials, machines and supporting services and others in order to get the optimum utilisation of resources and maximum effectiveness. Principle of minimum distance: This principle is concerned with the minimum travel (or movement) of man and materials. The facilities should be arranged such that, the total distance travelled by the men and materials should be minimum and as far as possible straight line movement should be preferred. Principle of cubic space utilisation: The good layout is one that utilise both horizontal and vertical space. It is not only enough if only the floor space is utilised optimally but the third dimension, i.e., the height is also to be utilised effectively. Principle of flow: A good layout is one that makes the materials to move in forward direction towards the completion stage, i.e., there should not be any backtracking. Principle of maximum flexibility: The good layout is one that can be altered without much cost and time, i.e., future requirements should be taken into account while designing the present layout. Principle of safety, #security and satisfaction: A good layout is one that gives due consideration to workers safety and satisfaction and safeguards the plant and machinery against fire, theft, etc. Principle of minimum handling: A good layout is one that reduces the material handling to the...
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Executive Development

Executive Development
Executive Development – Options are Wide Open Who is an Executive: A person or group having administrative or managerial authority in an organization. While “executive” and “manager” and “leader” are often used interchangeably, “executive” is commonly used to signify the top 5% to 10% of the organization. Executive Development : aimed at developing the skills and competencies of those that (will) have executive positions in organisation. Capabilities of a Good Manager: A good manager can make an organization grow, survive and shine amidst tough competition, if he is bestowed with corporate competencies such as perseverance, capacity to put in hard work, sense of loyalty and responsibility, all of which may be inherited or acquired qualities. Loyalty stems from internalized morality that may be a result of his value system. Executive success is what the organizations should aim for, and firms should try to figure out the fundamental components that make up the success formula or equation. Road to Self-Development: In less developed countries, employees are more than satisfied if they are provided with a job that offers safety and security. Their thinking is restricted to mere physical and biological comforts and does not go beyond that point, where self development and self-actualization come into the picture. In developed countries, the situation is quite different, where the workers aim for empowerment and look for reasons that motivate them to do a job. Money also has its due role to play, and people whose wages are very meager cannot be expected to aim for empowerment, where their single motive is mere survival. Abraham Maslow’s Point of View: Abraham Maslow puts forward the hierarchical needs theory, arguing that, there are five levels of needs for people in general, right from physiological needs at the bottom of the pyramid and need for self actualization at the top, and safety, security and esteem needs coming in between. He points out that, once a need is satisfied, it ceases to be a motivator. This is so evident in our day to day lives, where wants and needs never cease to exist and once a want is satisfied, human mind wanders to catch hold of another. So, organizations should understand and analyze, what factors best motivate their employees, particularly their managers (who might serve as a source of inspiration to their subordinates).It should be remembered that non-availability of jobs leads to dissatisfaction whereas availability of jobs need not motivate employees. Some factors which have been proven to be real motivators are as following: Recognition Opportunities for self development Additional responsibilities(lateral expansion) Timely rewards(in terms of money and appreciation) Security Inculcating a sense of belongingness Conducive corporate atmosphere Corporate culture Good human relations Economic burden makes people less enthusiastic and anxious in developing countries and this hinders them from delivering to their fullest potential. Also the bureaucratic approach followed by conservative firms, autocratic leadership style and lack of supportive atmosphere make people work like automatons devoid of creativity. Such firms may show good results in terms of productivity initially, but in due course has to pay the price, in terms of absenteeism, high attrition rates and less efficiency. It has been proven that job satisfaction is directly proportional to efficiency. When people find a job tedious and monotonous, they tend to lose interest, which will be evident from their lack lustrous performance. Performance management has its bearing on executive success and by providing with ample scope for career advancement and autonomy; managers prove their mettle even within limited scope of resources. Acceleration of executive change implies the development of the executive mind for performing managerial activities in a better way. Note : A survey of CEOs in Fortune 500 enterprises indicated that executives spend little time with their...
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Scope and Characteristics of HRM

Scope and Characteristics of HRM
Scope and Characteristics of HRM 1. Personnel aspect: concerned with manpower planning, recruitment, selection, placement, transfer, promotion, training and development, lay off and retrenchment, remuneration, incentives, productivity, etc.; 2. Welfare aspect; dealing with working conditions and provision of amenities such as canteens, crèches, rest and lunch rooms, housing, transport, medical assistance, education, health, safety, recreation facilities, etc.; and 3. Industrial Relations aspect: the legal part which covers union-management relations, joint consultation, collective bargaining, grievance redress and disciplinary procedures, settlement of disputes, etc. Small Business Management and Marketing Essentials CHARACTERISTICS OF HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT: 1. It is an art and a science: The art and science of HRM is indeed very complex. HRM is both the art of managing people by recourse to creative and innovative approaches; it is a science as well because of the precision and demanding application of theory that is required. 2. It is pervasive: Development of HRM covers all levels and all categories of people, and management and operational staff. No discrimination is made between any levels or categories. All those who are managers have to perform HRM. It is pervasive also because it is required in every department of the organisation. All kinds of organisations, profit or non-­profit making, have to follow HRM. 3. It is a continuous process: First, it is a process as there are number of functions to be performed in a series, beginning with human resource planning to recruitment to selection, to training to performance appraisal. To be specific, the HRM process includes acquisition (HR planning, recruitment, selection, placement, socialisation), development (training and development, and career development), utilisation (job design, motivation, performance appraisal and reward management), and maintenance (labour relations, employee discipline, grievance handling, welfare, and termination). Second, it is continuous, because HRM is a never-ending process. 4. HRM is a service function: HRM is not a profit centre. It serves all other functional departments. But the basic responsibility always lies with the line managers. HRM is a staff function – a facilitator. The HR Manager has line authority only within his own department, but has staff authority as far as other departments are concerned. 5. HRM must be regulation-friendly: The HRM function has to be discharged in a manner that legal dictates are not violated. Equal opportunity and equal pay for all, inclusion of communities in employment, inclusion of tribal’s  and farmers in the benefits and non-violation of human rights must be taken care of by the HRM. 6. Interdisciplinary and fast changing: It is encompassing welfare, manpower, personnel management, and keeps close association with employee and industrial relations. It is multi- disciplinary activity utilising knowledge and inputs from psychology, sociology, economics, etc. It is changing itself in accordance with the changing environment. It has travelled from exploitation of workers to treating them as equal partners in the task. 7. Focus on results: HRM is performance oriented. It has its focus on results, rather than on rules. It encourages people to give their 100%. It tries to secure the best from people by winning the whole hearted cooperation. It is a process of bringing people and organization together so that the goals of each are met. It is commitment oriented. 8. People-centred: HRM is about people at work both as individuals and a group. It tries to help employees to develop their potential fully. It comprises people-related functions like hiring, training and development, performance appraisal, working environment, etc. HRM has the responsibility of building human capital. People are vital for achieving organizational goals. Organizational performance depends on the quality of people and employees. 9. Human relations philosophy: HRM is a philosophy and the basic assumption is that employees are human beings and not a factor of production like...
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Trade Unions

Trade Unions
People Management and Trade Unions Need for Trade Unions Why do employees join trade unions is an important question. Most of the workers are members of any one of the trade unions. One of the major objectives of trade unionism is to promote industrial democracy. This objective is achieved when trade union is “an organization of the workers, for the workers and by the workers”. In practice this rarely happens and instead unions become an oligarchy. Union leaders by and large, show authoritative behavior with less participation, openness and transparency. Decision-making is centralized, elections are often postponed and positions are filled repeatedly by nominations. Rank and file is pampered with promises and seldom gets near to decision-making process. Positions get worse when unions are guided by outside leaders and regulated by the policies of political parties. Ideology of Trade Unions Absence of democratic leadership reduces the effectiveness of trade unions and prevents the development of trade union leadership from among the workers within the industries. In due course, trade unions become obsessed with political ideology or personal interest ousting the welfare of the workers. Before we move on to the functions of trade unions, let us understand the reasons for the existence of such organizations. To get a common platform to air ones views, aims, ideas and feelings and obtain recognition and status among fellow workers. Make use of the principle of unity for the purpose of securing good working conditions, higher economic compensations, better career prospects and welfare needs. Security of employment and protection against calamity of accident, death and social security after retirement. Restrict management action which is against the interest of the workers. Functions of a Trade Union The internal functions of a labor union includes better wage claim, to ensure better working conditions, reasonable work etc.,The external functions include conducting night school, games, sports and other recreational activities. These two functions may be grouped as economic and social functions. Many unions try to capture political power through election, so that they can influence upon the programmes and policies of government in favor of labor. This function is known as political function. Under the legal functions, the interpretation of law takes the major share. A jist of the main purpose of trade organizations: To improve the standard of living and working condition of the workers. To protect the security of workers’ employment. To ensure better health, reasonable working hours and welfare measures. To improve the political status. To raise the vocational status. To bring better participation in the management. To inculcate the feeling of self respect and confidence among worker force. To bring industrial peace and harmony. As long as unionism is considered as an anathema by the management, there will be lack of harmony and mutual trust between the management and labor force. Management must not consider labor unions as a legal obligation as it does not develop faith and goodwill. Instead the union has to be viewed as a partner in trade to live with and work with. Union must also recognize that work is worship and the survival and success of organization depends on the very survival and success of the workforce. Once the team spirit is built up no unreasonable demands will be raised and union leaders must view strikes and lock outs as last resorts to put pressure on management. The Trade Unions Act, 1926- An act to provide for the registration of Trade Unions and in certain respects to define the law relating to registered Trade...
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Product Innovation

Product Innovation
The Realm of Product Innovation A manufacturer or a service provider, who aspires to be successful in a business market, must indulge himself in research, pertaining to consumer preference as well as the various stages of a product life cycle. This will give him a better chance to make his future decisions concerning the product and also the wisdom to evolve strategies accordingly. Developing a product and introducing it into the market demands certain amount of forethought and prudence. The first step is to study the market, to understand consumer preference as well as to gauge whether your product will be appealing to the customers existing in that market. The prerequisite for this would be market segmentation, that is to statistically estimate the demographic quotient (people belonging to different age groups and ethnic societies) of the sample population and decide on the customers whom you want to target. A product’s success depends mainly on two things: 1) Innovation-lateral thinking, by which you let loose of all your unorthodox methods and stick onto some novel ideas of marketing. 2) Customer-oriented marketing rather than product oriented. This customer oriented concept is advocated by modern marketing consultants and it has proven to be a fantastic proposition. More than the actual product, people like to know more about the values that they obtain out of that product. The secret behind success will be to hit the right note, by propagating more about the value added services that go with the product. Expectations Created by the Product When a product is introduced in a market, say, automobiles for example, since every tom, dick and harry is fond of cars and bikes and they talk a lot about it. It is looked upon by prospective customers with great expectations, which might be due to the great hype created by the manufacturer through advertisements in electronic media, papers and magazines. The product as it hits the market will instantaneously make it big, if it has the right mix of intangible and augmented benefits that make customers happy and they feel that they have bought something worth the money paid for. A luxury car is well received by the market, irrespective of the price tag that is stuck to it, just because of the value added benefits such as, delicacy, great speed, high-performance, safety, insurance and warranty. Product Pre-Launch Analysis Before launching a product, industry analysis is a must, as various similar products might exist and it comes to the question of how different and appealing your product is, for market acceptance. Even minor things can make a big difference, say, for instance, if you are able to float the cheapest car, in terms of price but with great fuel efficiency, the results are obvious. The strategy would be to introduce innovations not only in your product but also in your thinking. Best products emerge as a result of tuning in your wavelength with that of the consumers’. Product Life Cycle A product gets introduced, grows, matures, stabilises and slowly withers off, just like a human being. No man is eternal and so is a product. You may argue that some products are in the limelight for more than their share of lifetime. If you keenly observe, that would have been the result of makeover changes to the product in lieu of the change in people’s liking and analysis of market trend. Some products have a second chance to prove their mettle. They go into hibernation for a while and then re-enter when market conditions seems to be favorable. The perspective from which you look at the life cycle of a product may cast a different idea...
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