The published articles are meant to primarily educate the students in printing to supplement their knowledge in the field of Printing. These are not simple Glossary of printing terms, but to the extent possible every term has been explained in brief so that it can be of some use to the students who appear in some sort of examinations and interviews.
I served the Printing Industry for over 40 years
in various capacities, a major part in an Security Printing Organization. In order not to waste the printing and paper related knowledge which I gained over years, I decided to keep them in public domain for the reason stated in prepara. Most of the illustrations - over 90% - have been generated by me to explain the terms suitably.
While I am not sure to what extent the published content will help, if the content is going to be of use to some one in some manner, I will be greatly satisfied.
Your views may be sent to me ( for my record and correction wherever needed.



- Over 400 terms-

Click on this line to read from 'A'

Monday, January 21, 2013

How to cut down Organizational cost - 4

How to cut down 
Organizational cost- 4
 – A Case Study-

( Written by N.R. Jayaraman )

In some of the areas where the activities were transferred between two sets of Supervisors, the Supervisory level was pruned and activities brought under one Supervisor so that the transfer activities even if minimal were avoided. This was done where the Supervisors were retired or the posts fell vacant due to so many reasons. In order to ensure that there is no slackness in the activities, the Supervisor meant to take two sets of activities were moderately compensated in wages. This was done with an aim to close down some of the activities which was expected to become defunct in the next few years as the unit was under modernization and the staff will become excess when modernization takes place and they cannot be immediately retrenched. 

Other suggestions included 
in the study report were the following:

 Preventive and predictive Maintenance to reduce cost :
A periodical maintenance program was freshly introduced both for preventive and corrective maintenance thereby helping reduce the down time of the machineries and equipments. Since the Organization cannot afford to maintain a fleet of separate personnel for this purpose, an agency was given annual contract both for weekly maintenance and for urgent repairs. The Contract was so designed that two contract personnel will be posted in the factory everyday during factory working to attend to the repairs.
The contract amount though matched with the wages which otherwise would have been paid to normal worker had long term advantage. There will be no liability for the Management on annual increments, gratuity etc for the said group of workers whose work will be limited and except on weekly maintenance days, on many occasions there may not be work at all if the equipments and machineries functioned well.  Arranging the spare parts from local market was the responsibility of the contractor on cost basis, even though the essential minimum spare parts will be kept by the Organization which cannot be instantly procured.
Tool Standardization to reduce cost of handling. 

Analyze tools used  in manufacturing and determine the most  common  of existing tools. Entire Raw material purchased  be standardized to ensure that the quality does not vary  while manufacturing the goods.
Standardization of the processes deployed to ensure that there is no deviation  from  specified process which will result in absolute quality of the end product. 

Creation of a pool of workers  by identifying the  workforce capable of performing the allotted duties upon training.  When the pool of workforce is kept ready, you need not  fill   the vacancy in any department with personnel from outside and easily transfer suitable personnel from the pool  which will save the overall cost in wages. 
Outsourcing major consumable parts : Advised not to manufacture the standard parts in the factory. To the extent possible outsource those parts which are commonly used. This can be got done by even contracting the same to ancillary units to specified design. 
Continuous improvement in design elements : Effecting continuous improvement process for the ongoing major operations by studying the process and close  monitoring . A meeting be held every six months to review the process carried out.
Periodical analysis of the quality defects Frequent collection of quality defects and analyze the reasons to take corrective action.This will also be part of the six monthly discussion group.
Better inventory control : Quality and Quantity control on the stocking of material required in the factory. The technical specifications for goods and related services procured should not prescribe a particular product, brand or service provider, and should include a statement that specifications are not limited to any particular brand or manufacturer. This will give wider supplier audience and to frame up a long supply policy.
Simplifying the procurement action for better response from the supplier:  The normal  activities involved in a standard organization works out as shown below. However  the time factor in each activities should be kept to the minimum  to ensure smooth supply. 
The above study report was done on one of  a bigger Organization where more than 300 personnel were employed and regular production of the product was carried out.  However the name and place of the Organization has been withheld for obvious reasons
- Concluded - 

    Saturday, January 19, 2013

    How to cut down Organizational cost -3

    How to cut down 
    Organizational cost -3
     – A Case Study-

    ( Written by N.R. Jayaraman )

    The following was another proposal given. 
                               Overlapping working during lunch hour / merging 
            two shifts or increasing productivity 
    with more pay wherever possible

    On one of the machines three men produced eight brackets in one shift . The lunch hour was half an hour in between both the halves of the shift. Due to the lunch break, the machine had to be stopped ten minutes before lunch and actual production commenced after 10 minutes after lunch because the machines had to be stopped and re started. The same is the case in the morning before commencing the work and machine had to stop before ten minutes at the closing of the shift. In view of the said action, the production also do not commence immediately and takes few more minutes. Thus around 45 to 50 minutes was actually lost in eight hour shift besides the lunch break.  
    Each worker was paid 200 per head and the wages per shift worked out to 3 x 200 = 600.
    In the restructure scheme it was suggested to continue the work without stopping the machine during the lunch hour by giving staggering lunch for each worker. One of the three worker will go to lunch half an hour before actual lunch commenced, the second person will go in actual lunch break, and the third person will go at the end of the lunch. With the nonstop working of the machine during the lunch hour the production went up by three more brackets. Thus instead of eight brackets, eleven brackets could be manufactured. In order to encourage the workers to do the same, they were paid 1.5 hours extra wages per shift i.e. 20% increase in the per shift wage, for the staggering lunch even though they enjoyed 30 minutes lunch break individually. 

    Both the scenario resulted in the cost of the bracket  and subsequent profit margin as below:

    Production in Normal working : 8 Brackets
    No of workmen engaged : 3 Nos
    Wages paid : @ 200 each totaling to 3 x 200 = 600
    Material and other cost including overheads per bracket = 500
    Wages worked out per bracket : 600 ÷ 8 = 75
    Sale price of bracket : 1000
    Margin of profit : 1000- 575 (500+75) = 425 per bracket
    Margin of profit per shift in Normal working : 

    (1000 x 8 = 8000) - (575 x8 =4600) = 3400

    With Lunch hour working : 11 Brackets

    No of workmen : 3 Nos
    ( Same as before)
    Wages paid : @ 240 each ( 20% increase in wages) totaling to 3 x 240 = 720
    Material and other cost including overheads per bracket = 500
    ( Same as before) 
    Wages worked out per bracket: 720 ÷ 11 = 65.45
    Sale price of bracket : 1000
    ( Same as before)   
    Margin of profit : 1000- 565.45 (500+65.45) = 434.55 per bracket
    Margin of profit per shift in Normal working : 
    (1000 x 11 = 11000) - (565.45  x 11 =66219.95 ) = 4780.05 i.e  Rounded to 4780

                     Wages for three               Per day                       Per bracket
                                   personnel                 production                production cost

                                                               Margin of Profit per shift 

    If you see the graphic representation you can see that even  with increase in wages to the workmen, the cost of production per bracket has come down because the production has gone up per shift due to the staggering lunch hour working In the same manner the profit margin has also considerably increased. The yellow shades project the Normal working  data and the Green represents the Staggered lunch data.


    Thursday, January 17, 2013

    How to cut down Organizational cost - 2

    How to cut down 
    Organizational cost - 2
     – A Case Study-

    ( Written by N.R. Jayaraman )

    See below an example to understand how the activities were analyzed since it was seen that a work may involve several steps or activities and can be completed in combination of other activities. The preparation of some of the PCB s for the machineries and equipments, each one of which consisted of 100 components or so needed the services of three personnel.

    Every day the same set of PCB s were also not prepared. Out of several PCB s only when a particular PCB was needed it was fabricated. Each of the workers took three to few hours to complete the fittings allotted to them and recheck the fitting. For example 'D' activities ( to assemble 'n' no of PCB s) took five hours in a day as the person had to attach over 30 capacitors carefully. His job included the checking of the work of 'S' after 'S' fixed other parts. Similarly 'S' used to check the fittings of 'Z' after he fixed the parts. 'Z' too checked the complete fitting after 'S' and 'D' fitted them. So these three were responsible for not only doing their job, but also to counter check the job of others. Thus all the personnel in the three different activities had to check the parts of the others in their own group. That means checking and counter checking as the work was sensitive part in nature. It was quite a complicated work to carry on. One other important issue was the checking of the printed circuit board for connectivity before fitting the parts.

    Therefore unless fittings of parts were completed the full board can not be checked and sent to the next department for processing. Certain days there may not be any PCB s to assemble and the personnel had to remain idle and they cannot be engaged in any other fruitful work as they were recruited only for this special purpose.
    Such important aspects in several areas were considered along with the following factors.
    Difficult to work
    Avoidable repetitions
    Monotony of work
    Extent of responsibility required
    Extent of supervision required
    Working condition that existed
    Extent of expertise and skill required to do the job
    Volume of work involved
    Minimum time required to complete the job Whether the existing worker has been remunerated in accordance with above.
    It took several weeks to study the entire working pattern in depth and analyze the work pattern in relation to the product manufactured. After analyzing the data collected all the under-utilized man power, shortage of manpower and optimum personnel required to man the areas in the units were identified.
    Besides the technical areas, all the under-utilized positions in the administration, purchase, stores, supervisory levels, less productive areas in production etc, etc were listed. Based on entire analysis it was decided to re adjust the staff pattern since the work flow was time tested in all areas of the Organization and one would have gained enough expertise to handle things.
    To begin with, the strength of the administrative staff was downsized by computerizing many work areas in accordance with the essential operational concept. Certain procedures were suggested to be abolished. One of the better and tested mechanisms suggested was to partially enhance the pay of few personnel, give additional responsibilities, reduce workmen by eliminating certain intermediary steps which were not really adding value to the work, shift excess employees to other areas and train them to work since all the work were standardized.
    See below one of the proposal to understand how one area was re organized. Both the Pre Revised and re deployed staff pattern are shown in two columns.

    Figures in Indian rupees

    The three personnel thus saved were trained and shifted to other departments where shortage of man power was affecting work. Otherwise they should have employed afresh at least three more men in those places.
    a) In the Pre Revised working the total wages paid worked out to 102,000 for three set of workers i.e. for six personnel (B,C,D,E,F and G) plus 43,000 for A and H personnel both totaling to 145,000.

    b) In revised working the wages worked out to 70200 for the same set of three personnel (BC+DE +FG + 30 % in wages to each) and the excess three sent to other departments with increased wage of 130 % each where shortage was found.
    The other two personnel ( A and H ) were also paid 130 % wage each thus working out to 55900. Both the groups wages worked out to 70200 + 55900 = 126100 .

    c) In redeployment the wages paid to the three workers sent to other area worked out to 23400 + 23400 + 23400= 70200.
    d) Thus the total wages paid to all personnel- both in revised working and the three personnel sent to other areas worked out to 126100 + 70200 = 196300.

    e) But in spite of increase in wages paid, and shortage of men compensated by posting personnel, there was a net saving of 1.36 % in one area alone. How ?
    Had this not been done, they would have deployed minimum three more personnel in the departments where the shortage of man power was felt and which would have subsequently raised the wages level. i.e 145000 + 18000+ 18000 + 18000 = 199000 i.e for eight personnel in technical plus three in others departments.


    Tuesday, January 15, 2013

    How to cut down Organizational cost – 1

    How to cut down 
    Organizational cost
     – A Case Study-

    ( Written by N.R. Jayaraman )

    A study was undertaken for a unit which was manufacturing machineries and equipments using approximately 1000 parts/ components, some of which were procured by outsourcing them and the rest critical ones were manufactured internally. They were assembled together in different combinations to be used on the special machineries and equipments manufactured.
    The parts were partially manufactured in two units and sent to the main units where they were assembled  with the outsourced parts and sent to the testing unit after which they were assembled on the main machine and sent for sale. 
    The outsourced parts were procured by the purchase department and sent to the quality check department. After they were checked, again they were received back by the  stores where they were accounted and issued to the user department as and when needed.  Each manufacturing unit had multiple sections where several sub parts or components were made or assembled. Each activities were almost interlinked and each component or the part was needed for some assembly or the other. This unit was set up several years back for manufacturing machineries and equipments but most of the finishing work were initially manually executed.
    Over the years they modernized the plant with equipments and small machineries to augment the production of the parts thus resulting in over staffing in some of the areas, most of whom were engaged in the manual work. The excess staff had to be relocated or retired with suitable compensation as the firm decided to cut down the production cost to ensure that the sales did not drop due to ever increasing overhead as their competitors sold similar machineries at much lower rates.
    The quality of the competitive machineries were poor and therefore even with marginally higher cost, this manufacturer's machineries continued to be preferred by the users because of their quality and best performance which drastically cut down wastage in production time. However it was feared that at some stage they will not be able to effectively compete with other manufacturers unless the cost of the production is cut down.
    Under the above background the unit desired study for restructuring the unit for better efficiency and redeployment of available man power to cut down the cost. Accordingly a study was undertaken and report submitted for restructuring the unit by adapting the following procedure:
    • The data in respect of parts needed -both procured from outside and internally manufactured- for the assembly was collected.
    • The data in respect of the outsourced parts vies s vise their competitive rates were gathered from different sources.
    • The data in respect of the work done during the last two to three years were first collected from both the plants vies s vise time taken to manufacture each part including the assembly.
    • Entire work carried out in both the units were delinked into no of independent work or activities and listed in sequence.
    • The nature of each activity was carefully compiled in detail.
    • Each work was analyzed to see how far each of the activity was really necessary for the finished product.
    • During analysis the order of precedence for doing the work or sequence of work was determined.
    • During analysis it was determined which were almost similar or identical in nature in finishing the work.
    • During analysis it was determined which activities can be simultaneously carried out without hindering either the previous or preceding activities .
    • Determined the actual time required for completing each work.
    • Determined the actual time required for completing one machine taking into consideration various operations- start of the work to the finished product. 
    • On the basis of analysis of each work the work description actually required to be carried out to complete the end product was drawn.
    • Started ranking the work and determined which involved minimum requirement and which involved maximum requirement in terms of time and energy. 
    • Determined where the manufacturing time could be shortened by increasing the personnel, increasing efficiency in the working, shortening the working hours, diverting the excess labors from other areas etc. The methodology to be adapted in all the aspects and cost involved were well analyzed. 

    Friday, January 4, 2013

    Expression Of Interest and Request For Proposal

    Procurement Action - Some processes

    (Written by N. R. Jayaraman)

    Different methods of procurement process is adapted for the procurement of goods, machineries and equipments. It will be difficult to state which of the processes will be the best since the tendering process depends on the product and quantities required by the Organization. Also it depends on the nature of the product, nature of machineries and equipments being procured, the extent of trouble free supply from the suppliers etc. Some of the goods may be of proprietary product in nature and can not be tendered unless it is officially supplied by different traders.
    The success of tendering also depends upon the suppliers interest in taking part in the tendering process. Many of the suppliers may not show interest in taking part in the tenders floated by certain Organizations whose reputation in the process of tendering may be viewed unfair. All these factors will influence the procurement strategy in spite of the selection of the best process of procurement in a given situation.
    Single tendering process to multi layer tender procedure is adapted by the Organizations for the procurement of machineries, equipments and goods especially which are Governmental controlled ones. The tendering is generally done by publishing the requirement in the News Papers and other such mediums. Listed suppliers are also contacted for the requirement. Once the advertisement appears in print media many suppliers and dealers take part in the tender, some of whom may be new in the trade or agents agent. The vetting of such tenders will become difficult and may lead to disputes at times. Sometimes even the genuine suppliers may not take part in view of unfair trade practices followed by some Organizations. This is the general scenario.
    Therefore where the nature of the product or service is sensitive in terms of cost and supply, the capability of the supplier is not correctly known, and the actual specifications is not exactly known as multiple suppliers produce the same product under different names, some organizations go for short listing the potential suppliers before going in for the bidding process. One such process is called the Expression of Interest (EOI ).
    It is seen on many tenders that once procurement action for a specific goods is known, some of the agent firms who may be registered firm but may not have enough experience may go into some sort of illegal agreement with the main suppliers and take part in the tender as though they are the original suppliers. They prevent the original firms from participation which otherwise would have resulted in competitive prices. This leads to litigation later as the price paid may be unfair, the after sales services may be poor, the cost of future supplies of spares and accessories if it is machineries supplies may be high and after some time the service back up may not be available too after few years.
    These are all common problems noticed in the trade. Therefore in order to avoid all such complications, eliminate unreliable middle men, agent firms, and to get the best product with good back up mechanism on a long term basis the EOI is adapted for services and products of high value and sensitive in nature.
    EOI may be used to find other suppliers who may have the correct Goods one is looking for or right type of machineries and equipments one is looking for and get them take part in the tender. This process is not meant to disqualify potential contractors.
    The EOI is beneficial in many respects as many useful information is derived .
    1. Suitable technologies and machineries and equipments to augment the production demand.
    2. The serious contenders to offer the Goods
    3. Whether the supplier has sufficient expertise to deliver the Goods required or not will be known before tendering.
    4. Whether the supplier will be able to offer reliable after sales service will be known.
    5. The financial status of the firm can be assessed to include them in the tendering process.
    6. Elimination of incompetent Contractors and middlemen is possible.
    7. Receipt of better proposals will be the main benefit.
    What is the general format used for the Expression of Interest Advertisement ?

    The advertisement may appear something like the following.

    While Expression of interest is called for the supply of Goods, Equipments and Machinery, another form of tendering involves calling Request for proposals (RFP) which will be meant for acquiring the services when an Organization desires improvement in the working, find out new solutions to a specific problem or desire to establish a project or desire to hire the services of some consultancy for some specific work.
    Remember that a proposal is different from the tender since the request for proposals offers solution and the cost will be discussed later. Also the proposals need not be uniform as each firm will have different solution to offer for the same problem. A Request for Proposals (RFP) is a project-based process involving solution, qualifications, and price as the main criteria that define a winning proponent. An RFP can range from a single-step process for straightforward procurements to a multistage process for complex and significant procurements. A proposal is different from a tender. Unlike a tender, an RFP is not an offer, but only contemplates an offer. How is the Request for Proposals beneficial?
    1. Deciding on a preferr
    2. ed solution or service and to negotiate with them for price and other terms.
    3. Short listing better offers and interact with all of them to find the best option
    4. One can take the solution of more than one agency is one single solution may not be sufficient for the expected service or solutions.
    5. When satisfactory solution is not received, it can pave way for changing the requirements and ask for further submissions from the same firms who had responded to the RFP as the process will be more transparent in nature.