Difference between Production and Productivity

Production and productivity are fundamental concepts in production management, particularly in mass manufacturing. However, they represent distinct aspects of the manufacturing process and should be used accurately to convey information effectively to management.

The difference between production and productivity has been discussed in this post. Examples are taken from the garment manufacturing industry.

Sometimes one needs to explain the difference between production and productivity. I have explained it here.


Production is a process or procedure to transform a set of inputs into output with the desired utility and quality.

Production and productivity

To the production people, Production is the quantity produced by the batch or a line irrespective of input. For example, a line supervisor reports daily production to management (e.g. Yesterday’s production of line-x is 500 pieces).


On the other side, Productivity is the ratio of output and Input.

Some of the usages of Production terms are 'production of the cutting department', 'production of the sewing line-X', 'production of the finishing section', etc.

Example: Suppose a sewing line has produced 400 pieces by 35 workers per day.

Production of the line is 400 units. (This is just the quantity. Input is not considered here. You do not know how many machines or laborers are utilized to make this much quantity.)

On the other hand, productivity (labor productivity) = 400/35 = 11.42 pieces per labor per shift. 
(To find labor productivity labor input is considered. You measure the performance per labor. With the productivity figure, you will get an idea about the line's performance.) 

Prasanta Sarkar

Prasanta Sarkar is a textile engineer and a postgraduate in fashion technology from NIFT, New Delhi, India. He has authored 6 books in the field of garment manufacturing technology, garment business setup, and industrial engineering. He loves writing how-to guide articles in the fashion industry niche. He has been working in the apparel manufacturing industry since 2006. He has visited garment factories in many countries and implemented process improvement projects in numerous garment units in different continents including Asia, Europe, and South Africa. He is the founder and editor of the Online Clothing Study Blog.

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