What is Batch Production?
Batch production refers to a method in manufacturing in which products are created as specified groups, or amounts, that each go through a series of steps to make the desired product. This type of production is created within a time frame and is used to guarantee specific quality changes. This method enables mass produced products to be created in batches, with fixed changes to each group.
Batch processing in manufacturing can create various types of changes in the product, such as varying colors, sizes or styles – whatever change the product may need. If a product requires any variation, batch manufacturing can be used to ensure that each change is created with the same quality.
Examples of manufactured products that are often created with a batch process management system in place:
- Newspaper and/or magazines
- Material coating
- Machines, tools, and equipment
- Computer software
Batch Production vs Continuous Production
Continuous production, otherwise referred to as mass production, is the opposite of batch production. Rather than separating products into batches, continuous manufacturing refers to the constant flow of production that is used to process materials 24/7, without any interruption. These types of products are goods that do not require any alteration, such as canned goods or household appliances. Thus, manufacturers are able to produce mass amounts at a greater scale.
The Advantages of Batch Production
While the batch manufacturing process is common, it is still often questioned whether it’s the right process for the business. With that in mind, Let’s review some advantages of batch production:
- Batch process management decreases risk of concentrating only on one product at time, which ultimately increases employee time.
- Increases efficiency of equipment and machine use.
- Enables high level of quality control.
- Reduces waste by producing the exact number of goods required.
- Helps lower cost by running machines only when needed, and not continuously.
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The Disadvantages of Batch Production
Batch production is clearly not suited for every type of manufacturing. To better understand the downside of batch production, here are some disadvantages:
- Batch processing in operation management can sometimes require extra attention, as the conditions within the process are continually changing, taking up more employee time.
- As staff are involved within each step of batch process manufacturing, there’s a longer waiting period for production as each batch is controlled.
- Additionally, the collaboration of staff increases the chances of human made errors in production,
- These errors with the batch produced will results in wasted time and cost.