Z94.17 - Work Design and Measurement

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BALANCE. (1) The act of distributing the work elements between the two hands performing an operation or between the different operations in a process to achieve essentially equal performance times among them. (2) The state of approximately equal working time distribution among the various components of an operation or process, e.g., the stations on an assembly line.

BALANCED MOTION PATTERN. (1) The sequence of concurrent arm and hand movements over symmetrical paths that produce approximately equal momentum between the arms in directions which facilitate muscular equilibrium. (2) A series of movements with both hands involving negligible delay or idle time for either hand while the other is working.

BALANCING DELAY. (1) The idle time of one hand in an operation due to imperfect balancing. (2) The idle time of one or more operations in a series due to imperfect balancing. (See BALANCE.) Syn: balance delay.

BALLISTIC MOVEMENT. A motion of a body extremity with relatively simple muscle action that is rapid, smooth, and flowing from start to finish. Such action results when a protagonistic muscle group causes motion in the intended direction to attain a peak force and velocity, which retards to zero as an antagonistic muscle group changes the direction or causes motion to cease. This sequential muscle action contrasts with that producing nonballistic motion, in which the protagonistic and antagonistic muscle groups act concurrently to precisely control the force and velocity of movement. Historically, the term is associated with the similarity of the motion plot to projectile trajectory plots.


BARGAINING. A method of formulating goals to match agreements for the exchange of goods or services with other management organizations. The process by which persons or groups with partly conflicting and partly harmonious interests try to agree on a procedure for dividing available resources. Bargaining is likely to occur when each group controls resources desired by the other and a rage of agreements can be made that may benefit both groups.

BASE PERIOD. The period of time established as the base from which to measure productivity changes in other periods of time.

BASE PRODUCTIVITY FACTOR (BPF). Is the ratio of total actual hours worked divided by the standard hours produced in the time period measured.



BASIC MOTION. A human motion closely related to primary physiological and/or bio-mechanical performance capabilities of the body or its members (e.g., a therblig or other standard motion defined within a predetermined time system). Compare: elemental motion.

BASIC MOTION TIMES (BMT). A proprietary predetermined time standards system.

BENCHMARK. A standard of measurement with enough characteristics common to the individual units of a population to facilitate economical comparison of attributes for units selected from a sample. Benchmarks may be used for job evaluation, performance rating, establishing operational standards, standard data development, cost estimating, and other purposes. (See BENCHMARK JOB, KEY JOB.)

BENCHMARK JOB. A job with enough characteristics common to other jobs, judged acceptable as a gauge for those other jobs without their direct measurement for time standards, job evaluations, or other purposes. (See BENCHMARK.)

BIOMECHANICS. The application of mechanical principles, such as levers and forces, to the analysis of body part structure and movement. This includes studies of range, strength, endurance, and speed of movements, and mechanical responses to such physical forces as acceleration and vibration.

BRAINSTORMING. A problem solving conference technique in which participants announce suggestions in rapid sequence. The brainstorming objective is to uncover a large number of possible problem solution, useful as well as useless. A technique for enhancing group creativity that encourages group members to generate as many novel ideas as possible on a given topic and no one may criticize or evaluate ideas while meeting is in session.

BREAKPOINT. A point in a work cycle readily distinguished by sight and/or sound which is selected as the boundary between two elements for time recording or element definition in motion study. Syns: reading point, endpoint.

BUILDING BLOCK. An approach used in standard data development of creating fixed groups or modules of work elements which may be added together to obtain time values for elements and entire operations.

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