ABSTRACT We test the situational impact of two types of resource flexibility, machine flexibility and labor flexibility, in a material requirements planning (MRP)‐driven production system. Machine flexibility has not been treated in prior multistage research, only labor flexibility. Machine flexibility is closely related to a plant's positioning strategy. A process‐focused plant opts for considerable machine flexibility by choosing general‐purpose equipment. Resource flexibility, if effective, can be an attractive alternative to two other types of buffers, inflated inventories and costly capacity cushions. Our simulation results, using factor settings established earlier by a panel of managers, show that resource flexibility is indeed an effective buffer against uncertainties such as end‐item demand variability, capacity bottlenecks, equipment failures, and yield losses. Machine flexibility is especially helpful in environments characterized by high uncertainties, tight capacities, and large lot sizes. Worker flexibility has a similar, but less dramatic, impact. Benefits are most striking with customer service, rather than with inventory or labor productivity. Finally, we show that simultaneous introduction of both machine and labor flexibility yields only marginal improvements over either kind of flexibility alone.
Decision Sciences – Wiley
Published: Dec 1, 1990
It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.
Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.
All for just $49/month
Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly
Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.
Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.
Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.
All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.
“Hi guys, I cannot tell you how much I love this resource. Incredible. I really believe you've hit the nail on the head with this site in regards to solving the research-purchase issue.”Daniel C.
“Whoa! It’s like Spotify but for academic articles.”@Phil_Robichaud
“I must say, @deepdyve is a fabulous solution to the independent researcher's problem of #access to #information.”@deepthiw
“My last article couldn't be possible without the platform @deepdyve that makes journal papers cheaper.”@JoseServera