Contemporary Selected Issues
Upon completing this presentation you are supposed
to understand the following concepts breifly:
1. What do we mean by facility layout?
2. What is the strategic importance of layout
3. What are the main factors that effect facility
4. What are the main types of facility layout ?
What do we mean by facility layout?
• layout design considers how to achieve higher
utilization of space and people, how to improve
flow of information, materials or people, how to
improve employee morale and safer working
conditions , how to improve customer interaction
• Although facility layout can be modeled
mathematically, layout and design of physical
facilities are still something of an art.
The Strategic Importance of Layout Decisions
Layout is one of the key decisions that:
Layout has numerous strategic implications because it establishes an
organization’s competitive priorities in regard to capacity, process,
flexibility, firm’s image ,cost and quality. An effective layout can help an
organization to achieve a strategy that supports a differentiation, low cost,
or response. So the objective of layout strategy is to develop an effective
and efficient layout that will meet the firm’s competitive requirements.
1. Determines the long-run efficiency of operations. Establishing the firm’s
image to be taken by others who dealing with the organization.
2. It makes the production process smooth and efficient and controlled.
3. Repeat orders and new customers will be the result of prompt execution
of orders. Plant layout is a significant factor in the timely execution of
4. An ideal layout eliminates such causes of delays as shortage of space,
long-distance movements of materials.
5. An ideal layout provides for inspection to ensure better quality control.
6. A good plant layout is one of the factors in effective utilization of labor
7. Planned layout avoids frequent changes which are difficult and costly.
Factors affecting Facility Layout
• Flexibility: Facility layout should provide flexibility
for expansion or modification.
• Space Utilization: Optimum space utilization
reduces the time in material and people
movement and promotes safety.
• Capital: Capital investment should be minimal
when finalizing different models of facility layout.
• Should office layout be private or open for
• Should all employees use the same entrance, rest
room, lockers, and cafeteria?
• Should the layout will meet the rapid in the
• Should the layout cope with nature of the work?
• Should the layout will promote the firm’s image
and give a competitive advantage?
• Provides employees with the space and tools they need to complete
• Use of comfortable chairs and adequate lighting may reduce muscle
aches and eyestrain.
• Place employee workstations near frequently used office equipment,
such as copiers, postage machines and printers.
Private Spaces versus Open Plan
• An open office, employees work at communal tables or at low-walled
workstations that allow them to view and interact with coworkers.
• If the employees perform the type of work that requires intense
concentration or privacy, traditional offices might be a better option.
• Place communal spaces near employee work areas and provide
enough room to meet the needs of the various groups. Informal
communal spaces provide areas in which employees can take breaks
Defined as grouping the workers, their equipments, and
spaces to provide comfort, safety and movement of
information. Technological advancements change a lot in
• Some layout considerations are universal, they have to work with
working conditions, teamwork, authority, and status.
• The office reception is very significant, because putting the right
impression which can help out you to increase your business.
• Delay in the response could put a negative impression.
• When you plan to design your office layout, make a list of key tasks
• An effective office layout groups people together based on the
functions they perform.
Based on the idea that sales and profitability vary
directly with customer exposure to products.
maximizing profit through product exposure
• The main objective of retail layout is to maximize
profitability per square foot of floor space.
• The most the customers exposed to the products,
the greater the sales and the higher return on
• Locate the high-draw items around the periphery المحيط
of the store.
• Use prominent locations for high-impulse and high-margin
• Use end-aisle locations because they have a very high
• Convey the mission of the store by carefully selecting the
position of the lead-off department, to be in broad view
upon entering the store.
Jay Heizer & Barry Render, “Operation Management”, 10th ed. Pearson Prentice Hall, New Jersy,2010. P
physical surroundings in which the service takes place have
humanistic effect on customers and employees:
• Ambient conditions: such as lighting, sound, smell and
• Spatial layout and functionality: involves customer
circulation path planning, aisle, and product grouping.
• Signs, symbols, and artifacts: which are characteristics of
building design that carry social significant (as carpeted
area that encourage shoppers to slow down and browse
the assortments of the store).
Jay Heizer & Barry Render, “Operation Management”, 10th ed. Pearson Prentice Hall, New Jersy,2010.P 380
Warehousing and Storage Layout
Utilization of the total space of the warehouse while
maintaining low material handling costs. Minimizing
the damage and spoilage of material within the
Nowadays, most the warehouses introduced the
automated computerized system in managing the
warehouse, so the layout should be designed to
cope with new systems where everything will be
computerized from the (automated order through
storing on digital shelves till exporting items to
Warehousing and Storage Layout
Three terms in warehouse layout have to be mentioned:
• Cross-docking: means to avoid placing materials or supplies in
storage by processing them as they are received. This policy can
reduce the cost of inventory handling. This system require tight
scheduling and accurate inbound product identification.
• Random stocking: Automatic Identification Systems(AISs), like
bar codes to load units anywhere in the warehouse randomly.
Computerized random stocking systems often include accurate
records of existing inventory and its locations , sequencing items
to minimize travel time. This can utilize the facility and decrease
• Customizing: to add value to a product through modification,
repair, labeling and packaging in order to generate competitive
advantage in markets.
Jay Heizer & Barry Render, “Operation Management”, 10th ed. Pearson Prentice Hall, New Jersy,2010.
The item being worked on remain stationary ثابتة and
workers, materials, and equipment are moved as
• Fixed-position are used in large construction
projects like(buildings, power plants, dams,
shipbuilding, space mission rockets, large aircraft,
drilling for oil, operating room in hospital etc….).
• Because problems with fixed-Position Layout are so
difficult to solve well onsite, an alternative strategy
is to complete as much of the project as possible
Some disadvantages with this kind:
• Space. For many fixed-position layouts, the work
area may be crowded so that little storage space
is available. This also can cause material handling
• Administration. The administrative burden is
higher for fixed-position layouts like the span of
control can be narrow, and coordination difficult.
To minimize transportation cost, distance, and time.
This usually achieved by locating departments with
relatively high interdepartmental work flow as
close together as possible.
Process-oriented layout deals with low-volume, high-variety
production in which machines and
equipment are grouped together. It is most
efficient when making products differentiation or
when handling customers, patients, or clients with
Mathematical approaches can deal best with
process layout issues
The design of process layout requires the following
• A list of work centers to be arranged, their approximate
dimensions and the dimensions of the building that will
house the centers.
• A projection of future work flows between the various
• The distance between locations.
• A list of any special considerations like (operations that
must be separated or be closed together)
• The location of key utilities, access and exit points.
William J. Stevenson, “Operation Management”, 8Th ed. McGraw-Hill/Irwin. New York,2005.P
Recognizing people and machines into a group so that they
can focus on making a single product or a group of
The idea of work cells was first presented by R. E. Flanders
• Cellular manufacturing, where machines are grouped
according to the process requirements for a set of similar
items (part families) that require similar processing.
• Processes are grouped into cells using a technique known
as Group Technology (GT). Group technology involves
identifying parts with similar design characteristics (size,
shape, and function) and similar process characteristics
(type of processing required)
• Workers in cellular layouts are well cross-trained so
that they can operate all the equipment within
the cell and take responsibility for its output.
• An automated version of cellular manufacturing is
the flexible manufacturing system (FMS). With
FMS, a computer controls the transfer of parts to
the various processes.
Advantages of cellular manufacturing :
• Cost. Cellular manufacturing provides for faster processing time, less
material handling, less work-in-process inventory, and reduced
setup time, all of which reduce costs.
• Flexibility. Cellular manufacturing allows for the production of small
batches, which provides some degree of increased flexibility. This
aspect is greatly enhanced with FMSs.
• Motivation. Since workers are well cross-trained to run every
machine in the cell, boredom الملل is less of a factor. Also, since
workers are responsible for their cells' output, more autonomy and
job ownership is present.
• Utilization. Because the better scheduling and faster material flow.
The requirements of cellular production include:
1. Identification of families of products
2. A high level of training , flexibility, and
empowerment of employees.
3. Being self-contained, with its own equipment and
4. Test “poka-yoke” at each station in the cell.
Poka-Yoke (from Wikipedia)
• A poka-yoke is a Japanese concept (mistake-proofing)
is a mechanism that helps an equipment
operator avoid and void mistakes . Its purpose is to
eliminate product defects by preventing, correcting,
or drawing attention to human errors as they occur.
The concept was formalized, and the term adopted,
by Shigeo Shingo as part of the Toyota Production
System. Example :
Ethernet cable plug is designed to be plugged in only
by one direction.
• About 50% of the U.S plants with fewer than 100
employees use some sort of cellular system,
whereas 75% of larger plants have adopted
cellular production methods.
• Commercial software, such as ProPlanner and
Factory Flow, is available to managers in their
move to work cells. These programs require info
that includes AutoCAD layout drawings; part
routing data, cost, speeds of material handling
It is assembly lines that range from fairly short with
just a few operations, to long lines that have a
large number of operations. Automobiles are
example of long lines where the part travels
about miles from start to finish.
• Many of the benefits of a product layout relate
to the ability to divide required work into a series
of elemental tasks that can be performed quickly
and routinely by low skilled workers or
• Assigning tasks into workstations are called Line
Balancing by task groupings that need equal time
• lines that are perfectly balanced will have a smooth
flow of work as activities along with the line are
synchronized to achieve maximum utilization of labor
Product layout requirements:
• Volume is adequate for high equipment utilization.
• Product demand is stable enough to justify high
investment in specialized equipment.
• Product is standardized .
Advantages of product-oriented layouts include:
• Output. Product layouts can generate a large volume of products.
• Cost. Unit cost is low as a result of the high volume.
• Labor specialization results in reduced training time and cost.
• Accounting, purchasing, and inventory control are routine. Because
routing is fixed, less attention is required.
• Utilization. There is a high degree of labor and equipment utilization.
Disadvantages of product-oriented layouts include:
• Motivation. Repetitive moves will lead to boredom and dull.
• Inflexibility. cannot easily respond to required system changes especially
changes in product or process design.
• System protection. The system is at risk from equipment breakdown,
absenteeism, and downtime due to preventive maintenance.
William J. Stevenson, “Operation Management”, 8Th ed. McGraw-Hill/Irwin. New York,2005. P 237