Despite the attention given to restructuring and trimming down manufacturing firms during the 198Os, little attention has been paid to the mix of skills they needed under different circumstances. We examined the patterns of employment by occupation in manufacturing industries utilizing different production technologies and the effect of establishment size on nonproduction employment. We found that a relationship exists between production technology and nonproduction employment per 100 production workers. Establishment size is found to be a moderator between nonproduction employment and production technology. Our findings imply two clear messages for managers. First, when considering major changes in production technology, managers should be aware that the supporting skills they will need from their nonproduction work force are likely to change greatly. Further, these changes involve technical and managerial workers as well as clerical and production support people. Second, they should restructure the functional or occupational mix of an organization in the context of the process technologies in place. Different process technologies require different structures.
Production and Operations Management – Wiley
Published: Mar 1, 1992
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