Process Analysis


Process: any part of an organization that takes inputs and transforms them into outputs

Cycle time: the average successive time between completions of successive units

Utilization: the ratio of the time that a resource is actually activated relative to the time that it is available for use



Process Flowcharting

Process flowcharting: the use of a diagram to present the major elements of a process

The basic elements can include tasks or operations, flows of materials or customers, decision points, and storage areas or queues.

It is an ideal methodology by which to begin analyzing a process.



Flowchart Symbols


Process Flowchart Example (Slot Machine)


Single-stage process

Stage 1

Stage 1

Stage 2

Stage 3

Multistage process

Types of Processes



Buffering, Blocking, and Starving

Buffer: a storage area between stages where the output of a stage is placed prior to being used in a downstream stage

Blocking: occurs when the activities in a stage must stop because there is no place to deposit the item

Starving: occurs when the activities in a stage must stop because there is no work

Bottleneck: stage that limits the capacity of the process


Multistage Process with Buffer


Other Types of Processes

Serial flow process: a single path for all stages of production

Parallel process: some of production has alternative paths where two or more machines are used to increase capacity

Logistics processes: the movement of things such as materials, people, or finished goods


Measuring Process Performance



Behavioral Considerations in Job Design

Specialization of labor

Made high-speed, low-cost production possible

Greatly enhanced standard of living

Adverse effects on workers

Job enrichment

Making job more interesting to the worker

Horizontal enrichment: worker performs a greater number of variety of tasks

Vertical enrichment: worker is involved in planning, organizing, and inspecting work


Work Measurement and Standards

Work measurement is a process of analyzing jobs for the purpose of setting time standards.

Why use it?

Schedule work and allocate capacity

Motivate and measure work performance

Evaluate performance

Provide benchmarks


Work Measurement Techniques

Direct methods

Time study

Work sampling

Indirect methods

Predetermined motion-time data system

Elemental data


Process Flow Time Reductions

Perform activities in parallel.

Change the sequence of activities.

Reduce interruptions.