The Application of Scientific Management in Today’s Organisations

1731 Words Aug 29th, 2008 7 Pages
The Application of Scientific Management in Today’s Organisations


“The principle object of management should be to secure maximum prosperity for the employer, coupled with the maximum prosperity for the employee…” (Taylor, 1911, p.9)

With those evocative words, Frederick W. Taylor had begun his highly influential book; “The Principles of Scientific Management” indicating his view regarding management practices. As one of the most influential management theorists, Taylor is widely acclaimed as the ‘father of scientific management’. Taylor had sought “the ‘one best way’ for a job to be done” (Robbins, Bergman, Stagg & Coulter, 2003, p.39). Northcraft and Neale (1990, p.41) state that “Scientific management took its
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From the above analysis it can be safely deduced that the success of fast-food outlets partly; if not fully, owes to the application of scientific management theory. “Scientific management has left a huge and ongoing legacy, reaching down to the McDonald's hamburger flipper and thousands of other standardised business products and procedures” (Kennedy, 1998, pg.52).

However, the applications of the techniques do not appear to be in equivalent proportions. It appears high in terms of operational aspects. On the other hand, for instance, the money incentive aspect although applied, non-monetary rewards are higher focused upon. And some techniques do not even apply. Therefore, taking an overall view of this analysis, it can be concluded that scientific management is applied to these organisations to an extent.

Scientific theory is widely supported by a number of managers. “A manager at the automobile factory jointly operated by the General Motors Corporation and the Toyota Motor Corporation in Fremont, California, pinned its recent success squarely on "the intelligent interpretation and application of Taylor's time-and-motion studies." ” (Kanigel, 1997, p.18). This necessitates an analysis of its advantages.

In this system, the principles of specialisation and time and motion studies would enable businesses to achieve enormous increases in productivity. Moreover, with simplified tasks and suitability of unskilled labour, employers could

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