Applying The Learnign Curve Essay

1183 words - 5 pages

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Applying the Learning Curve TheoryWeek TwoMilton RamosUniversity of PhoenixOPS/GM 571Instructor: Mark FairbanksFebruary 28, 2011Assignment TwoLearning Curve TheoryThe fundamental concept of the learning curve is the improvement in performance of a process as a result of the repetitiveness of the task, performed by an individual or organization. According to Chase, Jacobs, and Aquilano, the learning curve theory is based on three fundamental assumptions.The amount of time required to complete a task or unit will decrease as the task or the task required to complete a unit is repeated.The unit time will decrease at a predictable rate.The rate of improvement will decrease with increasing volume of units.The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) defines the rate of learning as the constant percentage by which the cost of doubled quantities is decreased. The slope of the learning curve is calculated as 100 minus the rate of learning. A reduction of 20% in a rate of learning for a task would be described as a task with an 80% learning curve as shown in the graph with the x-axis representing the number of units produced and y-axis representing the time per unit produced (Business Definition, 2011).(Source: http://www.allbusiness.com/glossaries/learning-curve/4942495-1.html)According to the FAA the unit curve and cumulative average curves are widely agreed models used by organizations to describe how the cost of labor hours decrease as the quantity of the items produced increases. The equations appear to be similar, but because the dependent variable is different the curves predictions result in different slopes. In the unit curve equation Y represents the cost of a single unit, where Y represents the average cost of different quantities (X) of units.(Source: http://fast.faa.gov/pricing/98-30c18.htm#18.3)(Source: http://fast.faa.gov/pricing/98-30c18.htm#18.3)The use of either one of these learning curve models will depend on the situation at the time of determining costs and the learning curve variables to learning. The factors affecting the learning curve include experience of the workforce, management learning, equipment capabilities, training program, product, and process design. Once these factors are evaluated the organization can make adjustments to the learning curve model and evaluate costs and options for production, deliveries, planning of operations. Next the organization needs to establish a quality management system using Six Sigma methodologies and the DMAIC process to understand the customer and supplier needs.Keyless fob manufacturing just learned that the chip supplier in China has a delivery rate of 82% whereas all the other suppliers can meet the 30-day delivery lead time to the Los Angeles location from the order date. Before making any adjustments to the process flow, Keyless fob manufacturing...

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