Management Of Production Problems In Manufacturing Companies
This study has examined the efficient management of production problems in manufacturing companies in Enugu state. The selected companies were ANAMMCO, PRODA AND SUNRISE.The research design used for this research work was descriptive research design. The questionnaire was the instrument distributed to the participants which was later retrieved. Frequencies, arithmetic means, standard deviations and statics were used to analyze the data. The findings of the study, showed that availability of raw material significantly enhance production. When the raw materials are available at the needed time, it is easy for manufacturing firms to meet production targets. However, another finding of this study is that adequate financial base enhances production. Manufacturing firms cannot function effectively or even produced goods without adequate capital. Based on the findings of this study, the researcher recommends as follows; there is a need to ensure that raw materials are available when needed. Thus, management should give production a priority in the manufacturing firms by ensuring that vitally needed raw materials are provided. Above all, management should endeavor to keep abreast of government policies on importation, taxes, tariffs which greatly influence production especially ANAMMCO, which relies partly on foreign spare parts for production.
1.1 Background of the Study
Production can be defined as the process by which good and services are created. It is a process by which a set of desired inputs is converted into a set of desired output. Production includes all activities wherein something of value is created.
It includes services such as those provided by hospitals, universities, insurances etc. manufacturing, on the other hand, refers to production of tangible goods such as books, automobiles and food products.
In the evolution days, production was, in a sense, almost an isolated function many companies. It jobs was, to take the designer’s blue-print and produce a product. Whether the product was accepted or not, there were barriers, in communication andcooperativeness between manufacturing and other functions of the company. Since production entails employment of the bulk of manpower, utilization of the physical assets and engagement of the bulk of the financial resources; pressures in the organization great; failure to deliver, an idle machine, a line of an unsafe process all demand attention in order to attain the corporate objectives.
However, management scholars having identified several problems in the production process for instance, low capacity utilization, poor quality and inadequate personnel, have tried to evolve an efficient production system that would attract profits at low cost and thus enhance the survival and growth of the organization.
More importantly, management experts have deduces that decisions and actions relating to production seriously affect the success of a firm. Good judgment in location and layout of the production facilities can produce cost savings and efficient operations. Effective purchasing and control of materials minimize the chance of operation interruptions. Careful production scheduling and quality help to assure that customers will get on-time delivery and quality products.
Regrettably, despite all effort by scholars aimed at evolving an efficient production system, many manufacturing companies have persistently failed to pay attention to planning and control of the production process which includes among others, quality, material and inventory control etc. This has been responsible for the colossal decline in factory profits with its attendant problems.
Industrialization is the only vehicle to a great tomorrow, to security, to higher income and to a higher standard of living. Industrialization changed Japan form fended aristocracy to a buoyant economy.
Industrialization will change the face of Africa, Asia then production will have to be provided with the attention, motivation, and infrastructural facilities it desires.
This will enable production function assume its role of stimulating our technological take-off and thereby create enough wealth to improve the standard of living of present and future generation of Nigerians.
The facts above underscores the need to delve into problems encountered in production and thus put forward better ways of managing the production process so as to enhance the overall growth of the manufacturing industry.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Most manufacturing firms in Nigeria are faced with declining profits due to focus on capital investment as a means to reduce labor and consequently ignore the huge profits to be gained through improved quality, reduced inventory and more timely introduction of new products. In a desperate bid to make and meet the demand, many of such companies are operating below their installed capacities. Some have retrenched their staff while yet others have shut down production. Often times, some of the problems have been attributed to; inability to procure vitally needed machinery, raw materials and spare parts. Other includes low managerial skills and inadequate infrastructure.
Some of the man-made constraints to raw materials procurement include lack of technical personnel to direct the manufacturing process. However, it has been observed that most companies fail to pay attention to managing these problems associated with production of goods. This has largely contributed to inefficiency in production system, lack of growth and declining currently being faced by most manufacturing firms.
1.3 Objectives of the Study.
- To find out if the unavailability of raw material affect production.
- To ascertain to what extent the provision of the infrastructure facilitate production.
- To ascertain the extent adequate financial base enhance production.
- To verify how effective staff motivation have significant impact on their performance.
1.4 Research Questions
- Has the unavailability of raw material affect production?
- To what extent has the provision of the infrastructure facilitate production?
- To what extent has adequate financial base enhance production?
- Does effective staff motivation have significant impact on their performance?
1.5 Significance of the Study.
The study is significant in many ways. In the first instance, a review of the production system and its design will provide valuable information on the problem inherent in varied methods in production and thus reveal the appropriate way to plan production activities in the manufacturing sector.
Furthermore, production management personnel, organization specialists and others will be provided with additional knowledge on ways of coping with the onerous difficulties in production aimed at enhancing production efficiency and thus the overall growth of the organization.
Above all, this work will also create awareness for management scholars on the need to manage production since it will offer helpful recommendation on the benefits likely to be achieved in organizations that execute production activities properly.
1.6 Scope / Delimitation of the Study.
The manufacturing companies are categorized under Auto-industry, Ceramic company and flour producing company.
The researcher out of the different categories randomly selected one from each of the categories. The selected companies are: “Anambra Motor Manufacturing Company”(ANAMMCO, Project Development Institute(PRODA) and Sunrise Flour Mills Limited (Sunrise).
The scope of the study is restricted to investigation production problems and exploring way by which the production process could be better managed to enhance growth and efficiency in the manufacturing industry.
Summary of Findings, Conclusions and Recommendations
5.1 Summary of Findings
The findings of this study are as follows:
- Availability of raw materials significantly enhance production. When the raw materials are available at the needed time, it is easy for manufacturing firms to meet production targets. However, non-availability of raw materials often lead to delays in production and this culminates in poor capacity utilization.
- Provision of infrastructure does not necessarily facilitate production. Even infrastructural facilities are provided firms might or still unable to make profits. This could as a result of poor planning and control of the production process as evident in poor management capabilities. Often times machinery, plant and equipment to speed-up the production process are in poor condition since much attention is not paid to their proper maintenance. Thus, the facilities which are supposed to enhance production often does not contribute to the attainment of the corporate goals.
- Another finding of this study is that adequate financial base enhances production. Fundamentally, manufacturing firms cannot functions effectively or even produce goods without adequate capital. For instance, when funds generated are not adequate it becomes extremely difficult to procure vitally needed materials, equipment and machinery needed for production. In fact, the firm will continually experience low profit which could ultimately result in plant shut-downs.
Production entails the conversion of a set of input into a set of outputs to achieve desired objective. It involves a lot of processes which need to be properly planned and executed.
Since production is capital intensive, it then follows that production managers have to undertake long-range planning so as to meet set targets and thus the overall objective of the organization.
Often efforts are not made to ensure that raw materials are available obsolete plants and machinery are not replaced for example in PRODA where most of the equipment are obsolete, all these adversely affect production with its attendant problems of produce up to the initial capacity for example, Sunrise that was set up with an installed capacity of 200 metric tons but is presently producing far below this.
Since funds generated are not effectively utilized in such a way as to provide vitally needed raw materials and equipment, the level of production continues to be on the decrease. Thus, the firm finds it difficult to generate profits to justify their existence since they are not viable. This is the case with SUNRISE, where most of the staff have voluntarily withdrawn since there is really not much activities going on in the factory.
Based on the findings of this study, the researcher recommends as follows:
There is a need to ensure that raw materials are available when needed. Thus, management should give production a priority in the manufacturing firms by ensuring that vitally needed raw materials are provided.
Most importantly, efforts should be made by management to replace worn-out spare parts and machinery. This is because obsolete parts, equipment slow down the production activities and often result in poor capacity utilization. This often culminate in lack of progress and declining profits in most firms.
Furthermore, there is need to train continually technicians and artisans especially in the auto-mobile industry to meet with the demand of changing technology. When technicians are constantly exposed to modern ways of production, they are better equipped to handle their jobs and his contributes to greater efficiency in production.
Above all, management should endeavor to keep abreast of government policies on importation, taxes, tariffs which greatly influence production especially ANAMMCO, which relies partly on foreign spare parts for production.
Finally, the management of manufacturing firms should also ensure that the capital base is sufficiently adequate to take care of the onerous task of production. If funds generated are managed properly, then the firm would not find it difficult to produce raw materials and thus meet with the regular demands of its numerous customers.
If all the points above are implemented, managers engaged in the production process would have gone a long way to managing some of the envisaged problems in production. This would invariably contribute to progress and overall growth needed in the manufacturing sectors so as to boost the economy.
5.4 Limitations of the Study
To ensure an efficient and effective smooth sailing of the study, the researcher encountered the following limitations.
It was never an easy thing to work on this topic at the same time enjoy the stress, because reasonable amount of time was needed to travel for the necessary materials especially for the review of related literature, distribution of questionnaire etc.
In carrying out a research work of this nature one had to battle with money especially at this period of economic down turn. The work was really money demanding coupled with other financial obligation I had to meet facilitate the course of the study.
Attitude of the Respondents:
Various respondents that were interviewed felt adamant attention in answering or responding to the question. Some that answered the question gave a very narrow response that made it difficult for the researcher to get their point clear, some respondents did not fill their questionnaire. Thus, all this limitation where never in any way significant enough to thwart the purpose of the study.
5.5 Suggestions for Further Research
From the problem observed, the researcher suggests the following areas for further research.
- Managing production problems in manufacturing companies in Onitsha.
- Managing production problems in manufacturing companies in Awka.
- Managing production problems in manufacturing companies in Nnewi.
- Managing production problems in manufacturing companies in Atani.
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