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Productive Efficiency. Content Economies of scale: –Internal economies –External economies Diseconomies of scale Capacity utilisation Capital vs labour.

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Presentation on theme: "Productive Efficiency. Content Economies of scale: –Internal economies –External economies Diseconomies of scale Capacity utilisation Capital vs labour."— Presentation transcript:

1 Productive Efficiency

2 Content Economies of scale: –Internal economies –External economies Diseconomies of scale Capacity utilisation Capital vs labour intensity Research and development Critical Path Analysis

3 Economies of Scale These occur when mass producing a good results in lower average cost. Average costs fall per unit – Average costs per unit = total costs / quantity produced Economies of scale occur within an firm (internal) or within an industry (external).

4 Internal and External Economies Internal Economies of Scale As a business grows in scale, its costs will fall due to internal economies of scale. An ability to produce units of output more cheaply. External Economies of Scale Are those shared by a number of businesses in the same industry in a particular area.

5 Types of internal economy of scale Example Production / Technical Economies Larger firms can use computers / technology to replace workers on a production line Mass production lowers cost per unit Large scale producers can employ techniques that are unable to be used by a small scale producer. Able to transport bulk materials. Purchasing / Marketing Economies Advertising costs can be spread across products Large businesses can employ specialist staff Bulk buying – if you buy more unit cost falls Financial Economies Larger firms have better lending terms and lower rates of interest Easier for large firms to raise capital. Risk is spread over more products. Greater potential finance from retained profits. Administration costs can be divided amongst more products Managerial Economies More specialised management can be employed, this increases the efficiency of the business decreasing the costs Risk-bearing Economies large firms are more likely to take risks with new products as they have more products to spread the risk over

6 External Economies of Scale These are advantages gained for the whole industry, not just for individual businesses.

7 Examples of External Economies As businesses grow within an area, specialist skills begin to develop. Skilled labour in the area – local colleges may begin to run specialist courses. Being close to other similar businesses who can work together with each other. Having specialist supplies and support services nearby.

8 Diseconomies of Scale Occur when firms become too large or inefficient Average costs per unit start to rise

9 Types of diseconomy of scale Example Communication When firms grow there can be problems with communication As the number of people in the firm increases it is hard to get the messages to the right people at the right time In larger businesses it is often difficult for all staff to know what is happening Coordination and control problems As a business grows control of activities gets harder As the firm gets bigger and new parts of the business are set up it is increasingly likely people will be working in different ways and this leads to problems with monitoring Motivation As businesses grow it is harder to make everyone feel as though they belong Less contact between senior managers and employees so employees can feel less involved Smaller businesses often have a better team environment which is lost when they grow Diseconomies of Scale

10 Capacity Utilisation This looks at the amount a firm is producing compared with how much it could be producing given existing resources To increase capacity utilisation can increase production levels Need to ensure there is demand for the excess production

11 Capacity utilisation If produce more need to increase demand by: –Increased promotion –Altering elements of the marketing mix to increase demand –Producing products for other firms (sub contracting)

12 Rationalisation Where firms are producing under capacity however don’t foresee an increase in demand they will reduce production to cut costs

13 Capital Vs labour intensity Capital intensive businesses are where there is a high level of capital equipment compared to labour input in the production process Labour intensive businesses are where there is a high level of labour input compared to capital equipment in the production process

14 Research and Development All activities that look at identifying new products / services and new ways of producing Need to be able to turn the ideas into products that can be sold Innovation – where new ideas are turned into products

15 Research and Development - Aims To develop new products which have USPs allowing for product differentiation Increasing the quality of products to increase customer satisfaction To develop more effective ways of producing to decrease costs per unit These can all increase the profitability of the business

16 Research and development process The research and development process: –Idea generation –Screening of ideas –Development of ideas –Prototype and testing –Launch

17 How to protect innovations If a business is successful with innovation needs to protect them from competition A patent gives the holder sole use of a process / sole manufacture of a product for the next 20 years Copyright protects the work of artists / writers and musicians

18 Research and development and the PLC Research and development happens before the introduction phase of the product life cycle Research and development is very expensive so can often cause cash flow problems prior to the launch of products After launching a product businesses need to do more research and development to modify the product or bring out a new product to increase demand and profit

19 Research and Development If research and development is good then it considers design issues In addition it needs to look at : –Customer needs –Use of product / service –Competitors products –Ease of manufacture –Costs / quality / profit targets

20 Research and Development and Risk All research and development contains an element of risk Therefore businesses need to ensure that research and development minimizes risk to get required results Cant guarantee the success of innovations however firms can try and encourage and support research and development

21 Why use CPA? Critical Path Analysis is a planning and management tool with the following advantages: Allows a business to plan ahead- efficiency Is time related giving an accurate plan Enables resources to be planned ahead Allows for good management Helps with cash flow management Reduces waste

22 Critical Path Analysis May be used as part of the decision making process to allow a business to plan and monitor operations Time related – identifies the maximum time for an operation to be completed Identify potential problems in implementing operation Identifies where and when resources (including human ones) are needed

23 Critical Path Analysis Advantages –Maximise efficiency in the use of time –Improve efficiency and generate cost saving in the use of resources –Beneficial to monitoring cash flow Disadvantages –Usefulness may be limited in complex and large scale operations –Necessity of having clear and reliable information –Skilled management and team philosophy is essential

24 CPA – the Process Identify and prioritise the activities and how long each task will take to do Identify which activities MUST be done before others EST – identify earliest start time LFT – identify latest finish time Identify the FLOAT – tasks which can be completed outside the critical path Identify the critical path – points connecting ESTs and LFTs (where these are the same)

25 Critical Path Analysis Nodes: Show the start and finish of a task 12 Node numbers showing order of activities in the left hand semi-circle of each node. 5 Earliest Start Time (EST) 5 Latest Finish Time (LFT) A 3 B 5 Arrows indicate the order of the tasks, the letter above shows the order, the time period below the arrow The Critical Path

26 Summary Economies of scale are were costs per unit decrease as a firm grows in size Internal economies are specific to one firm as it grows in size e.g. technical, purchasing, marketing External economies involve a number of firms Diseconomies of scale occur when the firm experiences a rise in unit costs as the firm grows e.g. communication Capacity utilisation measures how much of the production capacity is used by the organisation Capital intensity is where production is most reliant on capital Labour intensity is where production is most reliant on labour Research and development is where businesses come up with new ideas for products and processes Critical Path Analysis is a planning and management tool


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