The study found that having incorrect (either too fast or slow) timing for the rubber extrusion production line or having bad posture can show a decrease in quality. Therefore, the more ergonomically designed a factory is the more productivity it will experience.
I also investigated the role of assembly line workers on manufacturing lines. I learned a lot about how workers should behave and how their contributions are measured. In the second article Finnsgård, Wänström (2012), I learned about a new type of production method called ‘Lean Production’. According to Finnsgård, Wänström (2012): “Lean production has in the last decades become the most important paradigm for production…In lean production, the focus is on the assembly operator, who should perform only value-adding work” (p. 2). Therefore, it is important to remove non-value adding work. The article discusses how assembly line workers should only be supplied with the materials needed to complete a task. Additionally, the parts of the task should be designed to best help the worker. Here are some of the design highlights:
1) The angle that a container used by a factory worker helps him or her complete the job better. Angled containers are better than their non-angled counterparts.
2) Horizontal containers do not seem to be the best choice because they create a weird situation with the worker’s center of gravity and the part’s center of gravity.
I was surprised at how detailed the guidelines are for helping design the work-spaces for assembly line workers. There are many factors that must be considered. A factory worker needs a lot of attention because anything short of optimization can result in worse quality of work and can slow down the entire assembly line.
Both articles show the importance of considering the worker when designing assembly lines. I think that it is really important to pay attention to the experience of the workers in the factory because they often go underappreciated despite all that they contribute. When workers go underappreciated the quality of their work goes down and the costs for the factory go up. There is no reason to not spend the extra effort to optimize their experience for better productivity and safety and efficiency.
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