What Is The Difference Between Batch Production And Mass Production?

What Is The Difference Between Batch Production And Mass Production?

When it comes to producing large quantities of the exact same item – a manufacturing practice conducted by numerous businesses all over the world – there are a few different production techniques that can be employed. What’s the best way to get a large number of items produced in the most efficient way without compromising their quality? Most would answer with either “batch production” or “mass production”.

What is batch production?

Batch production is a technique that utilizes various steps to produce numerous units. This form of production is typically used when a large number of high-quality items need to be produced. The units are moved from one step to another as a “batch”. Take, for example, a batch of cookies. The same step will be performed on numerous cookies all at once before they are moved on to the next step.

During batch production, products are made in “batches” that travel through the entire production process together. As mentioned, this process is highly recommended for manufacturers who insist upon maintaining a high level of quality throughout each and every item being produced. As a result, batch production generally requires a smaller workforce than mass production techniques and the workers are often expected to be experts in their fields.

What is mass production?

Mass production is a technique that creates the continuous production of items throughout a series of steps that are all performed simultaneously. This form of production is generally employed to achieve a greater output than batch production techniques. When items are mass produced, the different pieces of equipment used for the production of the items are all used at the same time.

What are the main differences between batch production and mass production?

Batch production is generally utilized to create unique batches of items. In other words, the same production equipment can be used to make different batches of different items at different times. So, for example, once a bakery has completed its production of cookies, it can use the same equipment to produce muffins. In between the creation of the two different batches, the equipment being used can be cleaned and reconfigured.

Mass production, on the other hand, has the ability to produce a variety of different items all at the same time. Let’s suppose a company produces different types of juice. Using this production technique, its apple juices, orange juices and grape juices can all be produced concurrently.

Batch production is commonly used to produce several hundred products at a time. In addition to cookies or muffins, think books and Blu-ray discs. Mass production is often used to produce a larger number of larger-sized products at a time. As a result, large-scale machinery is necessary. The products being made will have to pass through various stages during the course of production. Think cars, as an example.

At Flux Connectivity, we pride ourselves on being an innovative connectivity manufacturing solutions provider. If you have any questions about our manufacturing techniques or wish to learn more about which production style would best fit your company’s needs, please don’t hesitate to contact us. You can give us a call at 1-800-557-FLUX or email us at connect@fluxconnectivity.com.

What Are The Benefits Of Capacity Planning?

What Are The Benefits Of Capacity Planning?


Although this word may seem to be part of a foreign language (it is, in fact, Japanese), readers of the Flux Connectivity Blog may recall seeing it in our post about level loading in early March. The word, which translates to “leveling”, is a concept used in the manufacturing industry to refer to waste reduction. What we generally call “level loading” involves avoiding unnecessary costs, preventing excess physical inventory and not overbooking employees.

The concept of capacity planning takes on a similar objective. The term refers to the process of determining exactly how much resource is needed in order to meet demand. More specifically, capacity planning is the act of working out how many people are necessary to complete a task or project. Do you have enough staff to meet your demand? Or do you require more people on the job? There a number of benefits to capacity planning.

It helps you to reduce resource costs.

What is the most cost-efficient way to meet your company’s upcoming resource needs? Capacity planning will help you to answer that question. Can your new assignment be completed by one experienced worker or is assembling an entire team absolutely necessary?

With capacity planning, you can better manage your budget. It will help you to determine if it’s worth holding off on a project in order to hire a less experienced but completely reliable worker or begin immediately on a project with a more expensive resource who will get the job done before the deadline.

It helps you to manage your skills inventory.

Your skills inventory refers to the various talents that make up your team. As the company’s owner, you know who possesses which skills and which team members are your most valuable assets on each project.

Capacity planning involves quickly finding the right fit for the task at hand. Your skills inventory is always being updated as your team members continue to gain experience and develop new skills. That way, you can continually revise your determinations about who is needed in order deliver your company’s best results.

It helps you to identify skill shortages.

Just as capacity planning enables you to determine the different skill sets, it can also help you to uncover the opportunities for improvement on your team. At the onset of a new project, capacity planning will help you to realize whether or not you are missing the skills needed to complete the project effectively.

With this information, you can make changes. For example, you can revise the project so that it can be completed by your current team using the skills they already have or you can recruit new talent on a temporary basis in order to assist your team. Of course, you may also choose to train your existing team in order to update them with the new skills necessary to carry out the project’s completion.

It helps you to locate new resources.

Branching off of that last benefit, capacity planning is a great way to help you find new people and allocate work to them based on their specific sets of skills. When you have the right people performing the right jobs, you improve your company’s overall success and its ability to master the completion of projects with high-quality results.

For more information about capacity planning, please don’t hesitate to call Flux Connectivity at 1-800-557-FLUX or email us at connect@fluxconnectivity.com.

What Is The Difference Between Standard Cost And Average Cost?

What Is The Difference Between Standard Cost And Average Cost?

For any business, proper inventory management is critical. To ensure that a company is profitable, it must have a good handle on how to control and measure its inventory levels. A company’s inventory, after all, is its biggest asset and having a strong understanding of how its inventory moves directly impacts profitability and maintaining a cash flow.

There are two different types of costing methods used to help manage cash and understand inventory costing: standard costing and average costing.

What is standard cost?

Standard costing is generally used to measure cost control and performance. This method enables an organization to value their inventory at a predetermined cost. It can help to determine profit margins based on projected costs as well as evaluate production costs that are relative to standard costs. In addition, standard costing helps to measure a company’s performance based on the predefined product costs.

When a standard costing method is utilized, the inventory and the cost of the products sold will reflect the standard cost as opposed to the actual cost of the goods.

What is average cost?

Average costing is typically used for the distribution of goods. This cost can change depending on where items are sold. By utilizing this method, a company can have the value of its inventory fluctuate. In addition, it can track its inventory and manufacturing costs without adhering to the predetermined costs.

With the average cost method, profit margins are determined by the actual costs of goods. Businesses can measure their performances against the historical costs of their inventory. Many professionals consider the average cost method to offer a more reliable understanding of cost.

It is sometimes referred to as “weighted average cost” since it assigns a unit cost to items that are taken from inventory in order to sell to the public. The unit cost is represented by an average of all of the units in a company’s inventory.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of standard costing?

There are five main benefits that result from using a standard cost system. They include improved cost control, more useful information for managerial planning and decision making, more reasonable and easier inventory measurements, cost savings in record-keeping and potential reductions in production costs.

There are, however, some disadvantages that can result from using the standard cost method. They include controversial materiality limits for variances, the non-reporting of certain variances and even lower morale for some workers.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of average costing?

The average cost method is the much easier way to go. It enables you to store inventory without having to designate which batch it belongs to. This method is also a known money saver. Because tracking inventory costs money, it’s important to note that the average cost method requires less time to maintain.

One of the problems with the average cost method is that the varying prices of inventory sometimes result in not having the costs recovered. This is especially true for the more expensive units. Some companies take losses due to their sales prices. In some cases, non-identical batches are mispriced. This is because the average cost method assumes all units are identical. But this is not always necessarily the case.

For more information standard cost and average cost, please don’t hesitate to call the Flux Connectivity team at 1-800-557-FLUX. You may also email us at connect@fluxconnectivity.com.

Outsourcing VS. Insourcing: Which Is Better For Your Business?

Outsourcing VS. Insourcing: Which Is Better For Your Business?

In the world of manufacturing, there exists a long-debated issue concerning outsourcing and insourcing. Many manufacturing professionals view outsourcing as the ideal cost-cutting measure, while others see insourcing as a more efficient way to meet company standards. Then again, there are organizations that enjoy employing a mix of both methods to drive business. So which is better for your business? Let’s start with defining each.

What are the differences between outsourcing and insourcing?

Outsourcing, as mentioned, is heralded as a great way to cut costs. It is the process of hiring a workforce outside of the organization in order to perform certain tasks. By using resources from outside of the business to handle the performance of certain services and the manufacturing of certain products, a company can focus on their core competencies. When an organization’s non-core activities are outsourced, it can better its efficiency and boost its productivity.

Insourcing, by contrast, is the process of assigning tasks to employees within a company instead of hiring outside talent or other firms to complete the work. Of course, the hiring, training and compensating of company employees for this process adds to the costs incurred by the business. Because insourcing is the more expensive route, it may not necessarily help a company’s bottom line. However, proponents argue that the completion of tasks in-house ensures company-approved quality.

Why is outsourcing an ideal choice for start-up businesses?

As we’ve outlined, outsourcing is a big-time money saver. For new and smaller companies it’s a sound decision to focus on the core aspects of their businesses. At Flux Connectivity, we work diligently to ensure that our customers receive the highest-quality manufacturing solutions while lowering their soft costs.

As Laura Cole explains on Business2Community.com, the cost difference between outsourced and insourced manufacturing is the single most important consideration for start-up businesses. This is because such companies are likely to have fairly restricted budgets.

“Insourcing is typically more expensive in developed nations such as the U.S. and the UK,” writes Cole, “This is due in part to a higher minimum wage and improved worker regulations, which dictate that employers must invest more into salaries and the cultivation of a safe and functional working environment.”

It’s important to consider your opportunity costs.

As we pointed out, many firms believe that manufacturing their products in-house will help to drive higher levels of quality. And while you may feel it worthwhile to be self-sufficient, applying an alternative route may pay dividends in the long run. An opportunity cost refers to the value of using the next-best alternative. This is especially important for companies that have limited resources.

Remember that value isn’t always monetary. While you may be forfeiting the benefits associated with in-house production, your alternative course of action may be what is necessary to strengthen your organization’s bottom line. What is the best way to determine the value of an opportunity cost? Subtract the return on the option you’ve chosen from the return on the best option that was not chosen. Can outsourcing help to grow your business?

For more information about how Flux Connectivity’s manufacturing solutions can cut costs and ensure top-quality results for your company, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at 1-800-557-FLUX or email us at connect@fluxconnectivity.com.

What Is A Patch Cord?

What Is A Patch Cord?

It’s true. We live in a wireless world. Each and every day, the vast majority of us use mobile devices that require no cords to be plugged into sockets in order to operate. However, it’s important to remember that – ironically – all wireless devices require wires at some point. How else can we charge our phones? How else can we attain Wi-Fi connections if not for modems connected to electrical sockets?

Even in a world where wireless devices are all the rage, the need for wires remains. And the patch cord is one of the most commonly used wires in our world. A patch cord, which is also known as a patch cable, is cord that has RJ45, TERA or GG45 connectors on both ends. They are used to connect a device to something else – usually a power source.

Patch cords can take on the form of RCA or HDMI cables which are commonly used to connect home televisions to cable boxes, Blu-ray disc players and stereo systems. Your laptop computers and PCs often use patch cords to connect the devices to wall outlets. Patch cords can also be used to connect a switch port or a server to a structured cabling system.

What are the differences between patch cords and Ethernet cables?

While the two are similar, there are differences. Patch cords are commonly used to connect traditional devices such as telephones and audio/video equipment to power sources. But they can also be used as Ethernet cables which are typically used to connect devices within a local area network, like PCs, routers and switches.

By definition, Ethernet is a protocol standard that defines the way that bits of information travel over a particular medium. The two most common Ethernet cables are traditional copper cables and fiber-optic cables. The twisted pair or coaxial cable and category cable (Cat5, Cat5e and Cat6) also belong to the Ethernet cable family.

“An Ethernet cable resembles a phone cable but is larger and has more wires,” explains Bradley Mitchell on Lifewire.com, “Both cables share a similar shape and plug, but an Ethernet cable has eight wires and a larger plug than the four wires found in phone cables. Ethernet cables plug into Ethernet ports, which are larger than phone cable ports. An Ethernet port on a computer is accessible through the Ethernet card on the motherboard.”

Patch cords and Ethernet cables are often referred to interchangeably.

However, main differences between the two also include their lengths and their purposes. Ethernet connections are generally designed for speed and long distances. These are often called the “backbone” or “long haul” in the world of cabling.

“Similar with Ethernet cables, there are fiber patch cable and Ethernet patch cable, like LC fiber patch cable or Cat6 RJ45 patch cable,” informs Chloe Wang of Fiber Optic Solutions, “And patch cables are often used for short distances in offices and wiring closets. Ethernet patch cable can link a computer to a network hub, router or Ethernet switch, which is useful for constructing home computer networks.”

For more information about patch cords and Ethernet cables, please don’t hesitate to reach out to the Flux Connectivity team. Feel free to give us a call at 1-800-557-FLUX or email us at connect@fluxconnectivity.com.

What Is The Difference Between Batch Production And Mass Production?

Intelligent VS. Non-Intelligent Part Numbers: Which Are Better In Manufacturing?

In the world of manufacturing, there are different methods by which parts are managed. And, in the industry, there is an ongoing debate about which of those methods are best. There are two, in particular, that we’re referring to: intelligent part numbers and non-intelligent part numbers. By their very names, you’d think there was no debate at all.

When has being “non-intelligent” ever been better than being “intelligent”, right? Well, as you may have guessed, there is more to these methods than their names. So, let’s break down what each of them really means.

What is intelligent part numbering?

There are numerous companies within the manufacturing realm that swear by the intelligent part numbering method. Intelligent part numbering is a process by which descriptive details about the characteristics of each part are provided. The overall objective of providing such clear information is to avoid any confusion about the parts and to save time.

Professionals who vouch for the intelligent part numbering method highlight how easy and efficient it makes searching for parts. By clearly labelling a cable assembly “CAB”, for example, it makes the part easy to locate and sort among the many others that may be necessary on a production line.

The “intelligent” method also helps to specify the groups to which every part belongs. Locating parts that are in the wrong groups is made easy. This allows for efficient processing.

Opponents of intelligent part numbering, on the other hand, note the challenges associated with having to train workers on how to appropriately define and label each part. Differentiating the names of each part can be confusing when they start to share some of the same characteristics. A misnamed part can wreak havoc on a product’s design if it is mistakenly used.

What is non-intelligent part numbering?

Non-intelligent part numbering is a process by which no descriptive details about each part is provided, but instead, a numbering system is used to differentiate each part. Instead of any descriptions, a list of serial numbers is created and assigned to each separate part. Proponents for the non-intelligent part number method believe that much less training is required in order for workers to learn it.

After all, you don’t need to know anything about the part in order to assign it a number. However, those who prefer the intelligent part numbering method contend that it’s much harder to locate parts based on random serial numbers. When perusing through a spreadsheet, for example, it’s difficult to tell one part from the other without any descriptions or names.

Opponents also cite having no frame of reference when trying to select a part. Again, numbers don’t provide descriptions, so being confident that the right part has been chosen doesn’t come easy.

Choosing the right method all depends on your business.

Manufacturing companies that are large in size often have multiple product lines. Training large staffs can be difficult, so such organizations often opt for the non-intelligent part numbering method to make things easier. It’s important to take into account the size of your company and its overall objectives. Each part numbering method is designed to meet different requirements and specifications. Which one would work best for you?

Which one works best for Flux Connectivity? Find out by giving us a call at 1-800-557-FLUX or emailing us at connect@fluxconnectivity.com.