Manufacturing is inherently a complex task and managing this complexity is a key corporate role. The complexity involved, however, does not emanate from the nature of the individual tasks that the job comprises. In all but highly technical, special product market segments, it is not difficult to cope with the technology of the product or process. In most situations, the process technology and wherewithal to make the product involved have been purchased from outside, with appropriate engineering and technical know-how provided inside to support the manufacturing requirement and underpin any necessary development. In a similar way, product design and the associated technology falls under the auspices of the customer and/or design function. Hence, neither process nor product technologies are generally difficult to understand or manage from the viewpoint of the manufacturing function.
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- 1.Brought to prominence in E. F. Schumacher’s book, Small Is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered, New York: Harper & Row, 1975.Google Scholar