An Overview of Manufacturing And Supply Systems Management
Due to the fact that it is mainly through their activities that real wealth is created, the economic and social significance of manufacturing industries has long been established (Wu 1994a). For example, a recent UK Government report gave three reasons for considering manufacturing to be important to the country’s economy. First, though only 20% of GDP, it provides 60% of UK exports with 25% of manufactured output being exported, compared to less than 25% of UK exports from 14% of output in the case of services. Secondly, a significant proportion of the service sector is dependent on manufacturing and, finally, it is unlikely that services can substitute for a substantial part of manufacturing industry (Caborn et al 1994). There is little doubt that manufacturing industry will continue to play a vital role in the new millennium. Also, the experiences of the manufacturing industry in the last decades of the twentieth century have provided strong indication that the companies in the new millennium will be faced with some new challenges. One of these is related to the management of manufacturing and supply systems.There is evidence that the factories of future will need not only tools to plan and control the operation of its existing operational structures, but also methodologies, tools and information systems to help restructure their manufacturing and supply systems themselves (Wu 1996a). To face this challenge this book aims to setsystems thinkinginto the context of manufacturing and supply systems management
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