The production system according to nature and quantity of output can be broadly classified and the Types of Production System in Operation Management (OM) as:

Types of Production System in Operation Management (OM)

  1. Intermittent Production System
  2. Continuous Production System

1. Intermittent Production System

In the intermittent production system, goods and services are produced to fulfill the orders of the customer rather than keeping them in stock for the future transaction.

Production facilities used in this system are flexible enough to produce a wide variety of products according to varied order and need of the customer.

Here the inputs and conversion process are continuously adjusted and changed according to the design, shape, size, and quantity of is make the flow of material and resources intermittent i.e. not continuous. Some examples of the intermittent production system are.

  • Workshop
  • Hospitals
  • Furniture manufacturing company
  • Film making
  • Building and bridge construction etc.

Intermittent production system can be characterized as follows 

  • Production in small quantity
  • The unbalanced workload on work centres
  • High skill manner to carry out varied designed works
  • High Process inventories
  • Frequent change in planning, scheduling
  • Highly flexible
  • The high unit cost of the product

The intermittent production system can be classified as

  • Job or Unit production system
  • Batch production system

Job or unit production system: In job production system a single unit job is completed by one or group of people at one time in accordance to or order of customer eg. making furniture, making the bridge. Here the product or service differs in accordance to customer order.

Batch production system: Here the production is done on batch ie, a large number of similar products is made at one time in accordance to order of customer or future demand of the customer. The second batch will be differing from the first batch and second batch production start after completion of the first batch only Examples are manufacturing of pharmacy products, electronic goods, printing of books, etc.

2. Continuous Production System In this system

production is carried out in accordance with the sales forecast and stock position. In this process raw material, process and products are standardized. The importance is given to planning, scheduling controlling activities. The system is rigid compared to in production system. E.g. production of FMCG likes soaps, noodles, beers, etc.

The Characteristics of the continuous production system are: 

  • intermittent Production is carried out according to sales forecasted and finished goods are kept in stock
  • Standardization of inputs, process, and products are done
  • No storage of WIP goods between two process
  • Due to the fixed standardized process, it is easy to plan, schedule and controls the production activities