Understanding the Types of Manufacturing

While technology and innovation have raised the bar in the general manufacturing industry, some of the most skilled and experienced engineers often aren’t aware of the types of manufacturing environment that exists. Generally, the following five types of manufacturing processes are the most common:

Repetitive Process

In a repetitive manufacturing environment, the production lines are typically dedicated to producing the exact same or similar items. The speed of the operations is either increased or decreased to match the customer demand. This general manufacturing process involves a minor setup and little changeover activity. In case a production line fails to keep up with the increasing demand, an extra line is added. Consequently, if the demand is not sufficient for the second line, it can be shifted to producing other products.

Discrete Process

This diverse manufacturing process covers a range from a few setups and changeovers to many. The items produced may be similar or entirely different. The more disparity in the products, the longer the setup and teardown line resulting in lower productivity.

Job Shop Process

This process involves production areas where a single or multiple versions of products may be produced. When demand increases, it can implement the discrete line process with certain labor operations are handled by automated equipment.

Continuous Process

Under this process, the operations run 24/7. However, the materials produced are limited to gases, liquids, slurries, and powders. If it’s the mining industry, material may also include granular or chunky materials. Although the designs are the same, there may be diversity in the final production disciplines and process.

Batch Process

The batch process works like a job shop. Sometimes a single batch is enough to meet demand and at other times it may take several batches. The equipment is cleaned before the next production. It’s possible that the same product is produced batch after batch. However, each batch is carefully analyzed and modified to meet the needs of a specific batch.

While many companies utilize a single general manufacturing process, others may rely on a combination. That being said, vertically integrated companies often have all five environments.

Since 1948, Bopp Busch has implemented new processes and equipment to be an efficient supplier. We continue to work to meet the exact specifications and requirements of our customers, while maintaining a safe workplace for our team. To learn more about Bopp Busch and our capabilities, contact us today.