Assignment Related to Operations Management Course
Plant layout can be divided into product-oriented layout, process-oriented layout, fixed-position layout, and work cell layout. In the product-oriented layout, machine and equipment arrangement is done in such a way that the facilities are placed in a single line and; thus, it is also referred to as the line layout. This kind of arrangement depends on the required sequence of operations for a specific product. Materials in a production process are moved from one machine to another in a sequence without deviation or backtracking. The output of a machine is made to be the input to the next machine in the sequence. This kind of layout is applicable in mass production of standardized products (Hammaduddin, 2012).
In the process-oriented layout, all machines of similar kind are placed in one area. This kind of plant layout is mainly applicable for batch production. The layout is mostly preferred in if products are not standardized as well as in the case where production quantity is very small (Rao, 2009).
The fixed position layout has stationary product and workforce, whereas the machines are moved to the product. This layout ensures cost saving at the plants where the production materials are bulky and moving them is a hard job (Black, 1991).
The work cell layout involves a group technology principle. It works by organizing production facilities so that items with similar requirements in production process are grouped together. It is mostly preferred where a large variety of products is needed specifically in small volumes (Feld, 2001). The machines in the work cell layout are grouped in accordance with the identified similarities in identical parts, known as part families. This layout helps in cost minimization where the cost of producing a variety of products in batches would otherwise be high.