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Production planning in practice


  • Harrison, FL


The changes and pressures facing the manufacturing and engineering industries today are increasing the importance of effective aggregate manpower and production planning. Several different theoretical optimisation models to tackle this problem have been described in detail in the literature but there have been few applications of them in practice. The reasons for this are many but include: the difficulty in expressing managements' conflicting and mixed objectives in an objective function; the necessity to oversimplify real life systems to enable these methods to be used; the simplistic approach to manpower planning used in these models; the difficulty in gaining managements' acceptance and finally the fact that what management actually wants is a tool to assist them in planning and decision making. What is being used by many managements is a case-study deterministic simulation model. Many companies are adopting this type of model for all types of planning and twelve out of twenty-seven companies visited in a research project described in this paper were using this type of model for aggregate manpower and production planning. It is proving to be an effective management tool and is being readily accepted principally because modern specialised financial modelling languages are enabling these models to be built, understood and used by non-specialist managers.

Suggested Citation

  • Harrison, FL, 1976. "Production planning in practice," Omega, Elsevier, vol. 4(4), pages 447-454.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jomega:v:4:y:1976:i:4:p:447-454

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