What do You Mean by Work Study in Apparel Manufacturing?

When we think of 'work study' in the garment industry we relate it with most of the activities done by the industrial engineering department. As the two major activities of work study - method study and time study is solely done by the industrial engineering department. Also known as work study department.

In garment manufacturing work study principles can be used in the cutting section, sewing section and finishing section as well. The purpose of work study is measuring work - like motion study and time study. Industrial engineering department is responsible for work study in the garment industry.

work study

What is Work Study?

You might be interested in definition of work study. Here it is
"Work study is a generic term for those techniques, particularly method study and work measurement, which are used in the examination of human work in all its contexts, and which lead systematically to the investigation of all the factors which affect the efficiency and economy of the situation being reviewed, in order to effect improvement."

(Source: Introduction to Work Study by ILO/ The definition given here is that adopted in the Brilish Standard Glossary of Terms in Work Study).

Read this book Introduction To Work Study - 4th Ed by ILO to learn more about work study.

Also read: Work Study and Industrial Engineering Terms and Definitions

Work study is mainly used for establishing standard time through time study. Read the article on how to do time study to learn about time study method.

Work study officers (industrial engineers) need time data to plan and evaluate production processes. If factories have performance incentive system, this time data is used for calculating incentive amount. Direct labour cost calculations need to incorporate with the standard time measured from work study.

Components of work study

List of activities performed as work study includes

  • Time study – Determining the time necessary to perform a job and its elements.
  • Method study – Examining the job and finding more efficient method to perform that job.
  • Work sampling - a method of finding the percentage occurrence of a certain activity by statistical sampling and random observations. Learn about work sampling

Benefits of having work-study data

There are many usage of work study method. Some of those that is commonly found in garment industry include:
  • Establishes a standard time for doing a task i.e. sewing operations, manual activities, cutting task etc
  • Working methods can be improved as a result you will have improved production, improved quality, and reduced production cost.
  • Standardize the method of working a task
  • Standard time derived from work study is used in factory as well as line capacity planning, scheduling, and raw material requirement.
Also see: Tools and Equipment use by Industrial Engineering department

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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