Analysis of methods and times


the point of view of the work methodology as well as the evaluation of the operations that make up the processes.
The current trend in companies in such a competitive environment is directed towards the automation of processes, directly relating innovation in the facilities to the increase in productivity in manufacturing, and leaving aside, on the other hand, the analysis and study of the global process
Every company must start from the base of capacity study in order to know exactly where it is and how far it can go, know its costs and also its margins … that is, it must measure its process, whether automated or manual.
It is said that the studies of methods and times are obsolete, but when years ago they were an end, tightening the staff so that the production was greater based on an increase in effort, now they have become the ideal and indispensable tool for any company who wants to improve.
Logically, there are areas where the study of methods and times is of little value, or processes where the time of operations in which the staff participates directly affects to a lesser extent in obtaining production than the time of a machine or a mechanized system , taking into account, likewise, that all automation must involve a feasibility study, where the knowledge of capacity hypothesis is indispensable.
On the other hand, the vast majority of current manufacturing processes are slowly evolving towards automation, basing production on the manipulation of the product by the personnel, and converting the studies of the work methodology and obtaining the values ​​of the operations that integrate the process in the indispensable base for the knowledge of its capacity and to approach and involve the company in a process of continuous improvement.
We must bear in mind that salaries tend to be higher in highly automated industries with a minimum content of labor, tending, consequently, to force up wages in non-automated industries, whose strongest competition comes from countries with lower wages and with lower living standards. The result is a great demand for the highest measurement and analysis capacity for the development of work processes free of wastage and inefficiencies.
Production analysis
As we have said, the analysis of production based on the use of measurement systems is essential for any company that wants to improve (objective that should be defined as a continuous process in all companies in the XXI century) and analyze correctly:
• The analysis of the current situation of the company, knowing exhaustively its processing capacity, the saturation of its resources, its bottlenecks, and above all detecting the points of improvement of the process, that is, the operations that do not add value to the product.
• The calculation of the improvement margin, taking into account the base defined in the previous point and the relationship with the resources used, obtaining a reliable estimate of the increase in capacity of the company.
• Production planning, understanding that good manufacturing programming must be based on a correct definition of the capacity of the processes, ie a detailed knowledge of the process phases, the capacity of the facilities and the resources to to use, in short, a study of the work methodology and the process times.
• The balance of production, having to know exactly the capacity of each phase of the process with the aim of reducing intermediate stocks and operations considered as waste, increasing the flexibility and efficiency of the processes, and on the other hand, knowing the saturation of the resources allocated to certain areas or sections of manufacturing (cells, lines, mini-factories …) and balancing human resources with technological resources in order to achieve the key factor of the company, profitability.
• The definition of costs and budgets, having to know exactly our process, what it does, how long it takes and what factors intervene in it, quantifying in detail, both the actual cost and future budgets for sale prices of the product, amortization of facilities …
• The definition of incentive systems, currently existing new incentive systems based on compensation for obtaining margins for improvement, and taking into account that any system should focus on an increase in the overall yield of production, for which he needs to know deeply the capacity of the processes together with the resources used and the margin of performance improvement, quantifying the company’s objective in the short, medium or long term.

Intrative in the company depends on a good knowledge of it, knowing exactly what capacity we have and how far we can get. Studies of time There are different systems of time studies, usually depending on the use of one or other of the characteristics of the process to study : Classic chronometry System that analyzes the process detailing the value of each of the operations in relation to the time observed with the clock and the work activity observed to the operator.

It is applied in repetitive and serial jobs, worth for short and long operations. Systems of predetermined times Systems that analyze the work methodology by micromotions previously valued in a table based on the definition of movement, difficulty and distance. It is used in short cycle and repetitive work, especially manual work. The most used are the WORKFACTOR (1st level and 2nd level) and MTM (1,2 and 3) Work Sampling or work sampling System used for group measurement of persons or machines consisting of making random observations to determine the relationship of the observations corresponding to work stoppages and different work elements with respect to the total number of observations of the process.

It is normally used in studies of saturation and assessment and standardization of operations in warehouses or non-repetitive processes that integrate difficult functions to assess, such as office tasks. The systems most used are the systems of predetermined times MTM (Methods – Time Measurement ) and the classic timekeeping, mainly because the most measured processes are the productive ones. MTM predetermined time system In 1940 engineers HB Mayward, G. Stegemerten and JS Schwab started a method improvement program at the Westinghouse. They began their work by doing a detailed study of the sensitive drills, filming the operations in 16 mm films and at a speed of 16 images per second. In principle, they took Gilbreth’s fundamental movements as a basis (Therbligs), but soon realized that enough of them were not practical enough, which gave rise to certain simplifications by grouping, which allowed them to isolate true basic movements and establish for them the corresponding times. At the end of the study on the movements and times in the operations of the sensitive drills realized that the tables made could be of universal use and served for all kinds of industrial operations, the MTM was born.

All the fruit of the studies and experiences carried out by the aforementioned team up to 1948 was exposed in his book “Methods – Time Measurement”. With the In order to avoid divergences in the interpretation of the rules of application over time, in 1951 the MTM association was created for standards and research, and its aims were:

• Carry out fundamental or application research in the field of MTM

• Encourage and encourage its members, as well as individuals, to carry out or conduct similar research and coordinate the work done by them

• Gather all available information related to the development and use of the MTM and provide its members this information at frequent intervals

• Establish standards and by all possible means, ensure the high quality of work carried out by any organization, to all individuals, in their use of MTM and application techniques. We must bear in mind that the use of the MTM system only works if the methodology is adequate, and that the analyst must have, not only a knowledge exhaustive of it and a great experience, but also a great understanding of the movements employed in work studied. Currently it is a system used by specialized companies for:

• The establishment of effective methods before starting a new manufacturing, eliminating basic anomalies in the different proposed methods and managing to improve the new methods from the ones initially proposed, that is, it allows establish an effective working method during the development of a new product, being able to assess the operations that integrate the process with a minimum deviation and being possible to work in a Concurrent Engineering environment

• Improvement of the existing work methods, analyzing the operation process by operation, or rather, micromotion by micromotion, detecting inefficiencies and quantifying improvements

• Choice of designs, shape and context of products to be manufactured, analyzing the most economical way of manufacturing based on product design (symmetries, manipulation. ..)

• Creation of effective tools, designing Suitable tools to facilitate the handling of the product, taking into account that in the repetitive assembly processes it is lost

Productivity methodology: Analysis of methods and times

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