Scientific Management and Its Main Components
Scientific management consists of four distinct components. The first is the valuation of a work process from an investigative point of view. Second is the allocation of appropriate employees or resources to the task. Third, providing employees with training, tools, and incentive to take on the task. Fourth, the use of scientific methods to improve the current approaches to the work tasks. While this management style originates with Taylor and the Gilbreths in the early 20th century, elements of it can be observed within prevalent, non-factory workplaces.
Fast-food or chain restaurants are especially similar in their approach to work methods. Employees are often not specialized in the production of fast-food but are given training in the workplace. Individuals are categorized by product, station, or other through other factors that allow the restaurant to produce high quantities of food seamlessly. Though this process is less obvious within large chain stores, such as those selling widely produced clothing, home products, or technology, categorization is also common. Employees may change tasks, such as going from a cashier to a sales associate within a clothing store like an H&M, but that is done according to a schedule. The schedules are formed with the scientific approach in mind, as companies frequently maximize sales in particularly busy hours by assuring that they have enough employees present. Incentive within the modern working world has also changed dramatically, with employees being offered a number of benefits. However, companies that offer fair wages, appropriate work hours, and adequate work settings are usually more profitable in the long run. As such, while the science applied during Taylor’s time may be outdated, the structure of scientific management has value within the modern working approach.