Scientific management is based on the work of the US engineer Frederick Winslow Taylor (1856-1915). It is a theory of management that calls for optimising the way that tasks are performed and simplifying the jobs enough so that the workers could be trained to perform their specialised job roles in the best way possible. Taylor believed the development of an organisation should be based on detailed observation of work processes, and on vigorous training and selection of the best suited workers. Frederick Taylor theorised that workers had different aptitudes, and that there was a ‘right’ job role for everyone. The task of management was therefore to select the workers fitting to the specific job, and also to scientifically train every worker in the most productive way of performing the specific task. By doing this correctly, every worker would be selected and trained to achieve their utmost potential. He believed workers could be unskilled but could easily be trained to perform the tasks. Within this theory every worker knows their specific job role how many units they should produce and the time they should produce these units, “specifying not only what is to be done but how it is to be done and the exact time allowed for doing it” (Taylor, 1998, p. 17). Scientific management is mainly practiced in factories on assembly lines, were there will be workers trained only on the machinery they will need to operate. There are different aspects of scientific management, one of the main aspects being technology; this theory is based on using technology to increase productivity. The manager will overlook employee activities and measure output, and performing detailed studies of time and human movement. With these studies, improvements could be made to the machinery and workstations used by workers, which would increase efficiency/productivity. Another principle of this theory is payment by results. Taylor believed that workers were...
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Naylor, J. (1999) Management.
Taylor, F. (1998) The Principles of Scientific Management. Re-Published. Originally published in 1911. Dover Publications
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