In 1913, Henry Ford invented the assembly line technique. It was revolutionary and is still one of the most important elements of mass production.
Over time, mass production has become more popular as it presents several advantages in terms of product manufacture. These days, it's one of the most widely used manufacturing methods for a range of industries.
But what is mass production, and how can it benefit your business? Keep reading to find out.
What Is Mass Production?
Mass production is a manufacturing process that uses assembly lines to create products in large quantities. Automated systems are an integral part of this since they enable high quality and speed. Mass production with automated systems is used when a business needs a high volume of similar products made.
Setting up an automated mass production system is a big job, so it takes a large initial investment.
How Mass Production Works
A mass production system comprises of several assembly lines all working together towards the same goal. Operators will run the procedures needed for the various lines, with the overall process of manufacturing the same product continuously and in large quantities.
Businesses use differentiation, specialization, and formalization to maintain a high level of efficiency. By using repetitive standardized processes manufacturing costs are kept relatively low.
Advantages of Mass Production
Mass production isn't always the best decision, as it depends on the type of product being manufactured as well as several other factors. For many products, however, it is the best production method due to the advantages it has.
One of the main reasons businesses go with this option is because it's so well suited for high volume production. By using automation systems rather than manual workers, many parts of the process are done more efficiently.
This is especially true for products that are quite intricate, such as phones or other electronic devices. When manually assembled this would be a very long process, but with mass production, a business can make thousands of devices per day.
At Hidaka, we have a large array of automated machines that we use in our assembly lines, from 3D laser machines to spot welders to shearing machines. We use automated machines for production, engineering, and quality. Learn more here.
When products are handmade, there will almost always be variances between each item. Through mass production, a company can maintain a high degree of control in terms of quality. This guarantees that all parts produced are identical.
The importance of this depends on the type of product being made. For things like home decor, uniformity might not be a major concern. Things like cars or medical equipment, however, should always be as precise as possible.
Cost is one of the most important factors when it comes to manufacturing any product. Having low manufacturing costs will increase profit margins, and mass production is ideal for this.
The use of automated systems means fewer workers are needed, which massively reduces labor costs. Lower costs also mean a company can sell its products cheaper without incurring losses.
Quality of Life
As mass production leads to lower costs, consumers can more easily afford other things they want or need. Mass production is used for a lot of common goods that everyone uses, so by keeping the costs of these low, people can save their money and use it on other things that increase quality of life, such as hobbies or vacations.
Being able to manufacture products faster isn't just beneficial in terms of costs and productivity. It can also help a company to out-compete its competitors, giving them an edge in the market. Hidaka USA, Inc. has three manufacturing facilities, making it one of the largest in Central Ohio. They produce parts quickly and efficiently, enabling customers to get their parts in weeks rather than months.
Automated systems work for long durations while maintaining a high precision rate. Manual workers can fatigue and get distracted, which can cause errors and inconsistencies in the products they're making. With mass production, you can massively reduce this, and expect far fewer errors.
The kind of tasks that are managed by automated systems are often ones that could present a health and safety risk to workers. Handling and assembling large, heavy parts, for example, could put people at risk of injury. Having machines do this helps to keep your employees safe.
Mass production came about as a result of the industrial revolution - before this, all production tasks were done manually. Advancements came much slower back then, but with the advantages of mass production, evolution is now much faster across a range of industries.
Another result of the industrial revolution was an increase in specialized jobs. Because of this, more workers are now able to develop advanced skill sets, and employers can hire more skilled workers. This gives workers more structure to their careers as they can specialize in a specific area.
Mass production has also created more jobs for people who train others and teach skills, as well as employees who repair and maintain machines.
At Hidaka, we have a wide variety of skilled workers, enabling our facility to handle nearly any manufacturing job, from prototyping to mass production, including licensed engineers, designers and welders.
Mass production is one of the best ways to mass-produce custom products effectively and at a low cost. A typical example could be a furniture company as they can produce furniture in bulk, but apply various materials as needed.
Consumers tend to prefer products that are customized as they can pick items that align with their personal preferences. For example, the same machine can be used to make black sofas and green sofas, with just a small change. This helps businesses generate more sales and increase profits.
Hidaka USA, Inc. specializes in prototyping. If you have an idea for a product, Hidaka can make that idea come to life and build a prototype of it. If you later decide to manufacture it with Hidaka, they will build a customized production line for your product.
Do You Need Mass Production?
Mass production isn't essential for all products, but it can be incredibly beneficial for many businesses. If you need to manufacture products in large volumes, then this is the fastest and most cost-effective way.
Hidaka is based in Dublin, Ohio, and specializes in mass production and prototyping. If you need goods mass-produced, or just have some questions for us, click here to contact us today.