Kerzner (2013) opined that scheduling is the process to arrange, control as well as optimize workloads within the production processes. It is used to allocate the machinery resources, plan for the human resources, and plan the processes of production as well as purchase materials. Scheduling is an important tool gives a major impact on the productivity of the process. The goal of scheduling is to minimize the time of production as well as costs. Pinedo (2015) stated that as per the concept of operations management the organization schedule their activities to meet the requirements of customers on time as well as improve the operational efficiency.
The research report is based on scheduling and its relation to the concept of operation management. The importance of operation scheduling is reflected in its current trends. Apart from this, current challenges of operations scheduling are identified with its particular solutions. Recommendations are also given to cope up with those identified challenges.
Scheduling and its relation with operation management
Under the functions of operations such as manufacturing as well as services, scheduling relates to the use of equipment, scheduling the human activities as well as receiving of materials. Scheduling compacts with allocations as well as supply allocation for manufacture of quantity. The planning of operations is done to be part of the short-term planning (Schroeder, Goldstein & Rungtusanatham, 2013). The high-level purpose of the operation planning is to choose the best method of allocation of labor as well as equipment in order to discover a balance between the time as well as the utilize of limited resources in the organization.
Importance of Operations Scheduling
With the help of the operations scheduling, two of the important factors of the resources in the organization is considered such as allocation of the resources in the organization and setting up of timetable. In the current competitive world, the orders are placed from the side of the customers (Jacobs & Chase, 2013). Operation management is the area of the management that is concerned to design as well as control the process of production. It redesigns trade operations within the manufacture of goods as well as services. It involves ensuring that the operations of the business are efficient in order to meet the requirements of the customers. It concerns to manage the process that converts the inputs into the outputs (Schwalbe, 2015). With using the operations scheduling, the orders are finished on or before the deadline. In order to complete this, operations scheduling plays a vital role to ensure that the dates should be convened. It helps in confirmation as well as revision of the delivery date that are promised (Krajewski, Ritzman & Malhotr, 2013). The scheduling helps to keep the cost down as well as allow operating as per the scheduled budget.
The importance of operations scheduling is that it ensures continuous scheduling of a job, removes the scheduling bottlenecks, ensures feedback in order to make an adjustment and enhances the product as well as a process. Scheduling helps in the capacity planning to reduce the bottlenecks, streamlines the order production based on due date, sequencing in different job works. Scheduling reduces the delays during the individual jobs that allow the supervisors to assign jobs (Schwindt & Zimmermann, 2015). The principle of scheduling is to obligate jobs plan in order to estimate labor hours as well as construct the skill levels. It encourages interrupting jobs in progress through proper prioritization of the work. It commits the crew leaders in order to forecast the labor hours (Amiri & Barbin, 2015). Scheduling establishes the importance to measure the process of schedule. It measures the outcomes in order to help that the management plans, as well as schedules, does take place.
Current trends of scheduling in operation management
Operation management is the process in which the resources are converted into useful products. The scheduling has many current trends in the operation management that have involved with an impact on the manufacturing industries as follows:
Flexibility: The ability to change in volume, delivery schedules as well as design of products becomes a competitive advantage to the industries (Binder, 2016).
Reduction of schedule: Reduction in the manufacturing cycle of the new product provides a competitive advantage (Karthikeyan et al., 2015). When the industries are providing products at the same price as well as quality, then it takes short lead-time in order to provide the product to the customers.
Business process re-engineering: It involves with measuring the improvement in order to improve the scheduling operations of the industry (Khanna, 2015). It consists of clean state approach in redesigning of the business processes.
Lean production: This production system has a minimal amount of resources in order to produce a high volume of quality of goods with some variety (Christopher, 2016). It is flexible for the manufacturing systems as well as a workforce to have an advantage of mass as well as job production.
Just in time production: Actual order provides the production system when the product is manufactured. Demand-pull enables that the product is produced in the correct quantity as well as within correct time. It means that the stock levels of the products, work in progress as well as finished goods are kept the minimum. Therefore, it requires a scheduling as well as a flow of resources through the process of production.
Enterprise Resource Planning: The enterprise wise information system is designed to coordinate the resources, schedule the time of operations as well as activities that are required to complete the business processes such as fulfillment of order or billing (Leach, 2014).
Challenges of scheduling in operation management
Operation scheduling is critical for the industries as it is a complicated task. Sometimes, it is seen that during the scheduling operations of the work order, the delivery date originally promised is not met. It is due to the challenges such as materials that are necessary are not accessible at the particular time (Schwindt & Zimmermann, 2015). The problem occurs due to increase in the plant loading. The operations scheduling has a direct effect on the effectiveness of the function of production. If the scheduling of operations is accepted out in a competent manner, then it occurs significant improvement within the performance in the delivery (Jacobs & Chase, 2013). It assists in attainment of the goals that put by the company. In order to reduce the production lead times, operation scheduling acts as a vital part.
The scheduling of the services encounters the problems within the manufacturing industries. The challenges occur due to nature of the service operations such as intangibility of the services as well as an inability to inventory services (Karthikeyan et al., 2015). The demands of the services are random. The random demand makes the labor scheduling difficult within the manufacturing industries. Since the customers are not waiting, the labor must schedule such that the waiting time of the customer is minimized.
Solutions of scheduling in operation management
Queuing theory is used to estimate the arrival as well as service rates in order to measure the optimum staffing plan. Flexibility builds into the service of operation using labor, cross training as well as on-call employees (Amiri & Barbin, 2015). Scheduling of the services is also becomes complicated when it is required to coordinate as well as schedule more than one resources. Even other operational techniques such as Gantt chart and queuing analysis are used to schedule the operations of the service.
The random natures of the services are moderated by using the reservation system. The system is designed in order to enable the services system to formulate the accurate estimation of the demand on the system for some period (Christopher, 2016). It is also used to minimize the dissatisfaction level of the customers generated by waiting or inability in order to obtain service. Therefore, late arrivals can disrupt the system. Scheduling hourly work times is done where more and more workers are required for specific times of the day. The supply chain management is an advanced scheduling strategy (Krajewski, Ritzman & Malhotr, 2013). It facilitates the supply services as well as information flow through the supply chain. It manages the production between the company, manufacturers, distributors, and the customers.
The following are the recommendations that are suggested:
- In order to schedule the tasks properly, it is required to estimate the potential sales with reliability. Most of the businesses do not have firm numbers on the future sales. The sales forecast is to be done on the historical information, a trend in the market as well as established orders.
- An inventory system should be placed to estimate the proper schedule time.
- It is recommended to determine the production step in order to map the processes. it is required to incorporate the average time in order to complete the work. After the completion of the process map, it is easily estimated that total time required completing the entire process. When the task is repeated, then it is best to standardize the task as well as the time involved.
- The industries should use service execution system in order to link the schedules, tracks the order, monitors as well as controls the customer's encounter with the service organization.
- Use of supply chain management system is used to facilitate the supply services as well as information flow. It manages the production between the company, manufacturers, distributors, as well as the customers.
It is concluded that the operations scheduling is designed to meet with due dates such as delivering the products to the customers on the deadline. It also minimizes the lead-time of the product in order to minimize the inventory levels as well as respond to the customers as quickly as possible. The scheduling is done to minimize the work in process inventory as well as maximize the machine utilization. Using the scheduling principles, there is a direct equivalence among the workflow as well as cash flow. The standard measures of the schedule performance are to meet with minimizing the flow time, minimizing the work in progress inventory as well as minimizing the time that machines are idle. The challenges occur due to nature of the service operations such as intangibility of the services as well as an inability to inventory services. The challenges have occurred due to effectiveness of the production functions. The scheduling functions are performed by the industries to allocate the orders, determine the sequence of the order performance, and initiate the performance of the schedule as well as shop floor control.
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