5 Manufacturing Process Types


When it comes to manufacturing, there are many different methods that companies use. These methods vary depending on the products that are being made and the type of production.

According to Fladger Associates, there are five different manufacturing process types that businesses can choose from. These include:


Repetitive manufacturing is a manufacturing process that creates goods in rapid succession. This method is often used by large-scale manufacturers that need to make a large number of products in a short amount of time.

Repetitive manufacturers can use automated assembly lines and automation equipment to increase production speed, reduce labor costs, and improve product quality. This type of manufacturing is commonly used for the production of durable goods, cars, and electronics.

This manufacturing method also allows for higher throughput and lower inventory levels, which can help to cut down on production costs as the business grows. It’s also an excellent choice for businesses that need to produce a large number of products on a regular basis.

Another difference between repetitive manufacturing and discrete manufacturing is that repetitive processes produce solid-state components, whereas discrete manufacturers use liquids, gases, slurries, or powders. This can have a major impact on the types of products that are made, as these products can be more complex and difficult to manufacture.

In addition, the setup time is much shorter in repetitive manufacturing than in discrete, which can be beneficial for manufacturers that need to meet tight production deadlines. This is particularly helpful for businesses that need to produce high volumes of products in a short amount of time, such as automobile companies.

The setup time for discrete manufacturing is also significantly longer than in repetitive manufacturing, which makes this process less suitable for many types of producers. It’s particularly inappropriate for artists and crafters, as these types of production require more attention to detail, making them less suited to this process.

Repetitive manufacturing is a good fit for mass-produced products that are similar in design and layout. However, it’s not the best option for producing products that are unique or customizable, such as those produced by makers and artists.


Discrete manufacturing is a production process that produces products in individual, separate pieces. Typical examples of discrete products include cars, furniture, electronics, and airplanes. These items can be broken down and repurposed when they’re no longer needed.

Unlike process manufacturing, which mixes and combines raw materials in bulk quantities to create finished goods, discrete manufacturing uses formulas and recipes. This means that raw materials cannot be remade into different products after the process is completed, but they can still be reused or recycled for additional use.

Many industries rely on discrete manufacturing, including automobiles, computer hardware, smartphones, and defense equipment. This type of manufacturing is scalable and can be supported by intelligent edge solutions that integrate into your manufacturing operations and support AI, machine learning, and real-time data analytics.

A key difference between discrete and process manufacturing is that process manufacturing relies on a formula or recipe to make the finished goods, while discrete manufacturing uses bills of materials (BOM) to specify the components and order of assembly of finished objects. It also requires a capable MRP system to ensure that the creation and assembly of these objects are completed in the correct order and close tolerances.

Using a combination of these tools, manufacturers can produce their products at rates that are optimized for speed and scale. This is particularly important in verticals like automotive, aerospace, and defense that rely on a variety of complex technologies to produce their end products. With this ability, a manufacturer can improve its visibility and control over the production process, increasing operating efficiency and reducing costs.

Job Shop

A job shop is a type of manufacturing process where small batches of customized goods are produced. This type of production can be used by many businesses and is a useful way to meet unique customer demands.

This manufacturing process is characterized by separated workstations that perform different tasks during a product’s production. It is usually a good choice for smaller manufacturing firms that want to produce unique products and avoid large machine costs.

The main advantage of a job shop manufacturing process is that it allows a company to customize the production steps and setup for each product. This is important because the products are not standardized and can vary in size, shape, and design.

However, this method of producing items can also have its downsides. For example, this production process can make it difficult to track equipment and material status.

Another problem with this method of production is that it often requires materials to travel a long distance. For example, if a part has to be processed in one department before it can move on to the next, this can take a significant amount of time.

Additionally, this process is very sensitive to small changes in production. For instance, if a process takes longer than expected, all subsequent parts on the same machine are delayed. This can lead to waste, as well as unplanned downtime for machines and workers.

To ensure that your company is able to produce and deliver products on time, you should implement a system that will track your production lead times and delivery times. This can help you prioritize work and minimize delays in the supply chain. It can also allow you to identify any lags and find ways to eliminate them before they occur.


Continuous manufacturing is a production process that runs 24/7 and uses raw materials like gases, liquids, powders, or slurries. This type of manufacturing is common in industries that require large volumes of standardized products and processes, such as iron production or petrochemical.

This type of manufacturing is typically more expensive than batch manufacturing, but it also has some significant advantages. One of the main advantages is that it allows companies to produce a higher volume of products in a shorter amount of time.

Another advantage is that it can help manufacturers improve their quality standards. Since there are fewer changes made during continuous production, it is easier to find defects and fix them before they impact the final product.

Lastly, continuous manufacturing can help companies increase their profits by reducing their overall labor costs. By producing large quantities of goods in a short period of time, they can charge consumers affordable prices without having to reduce the quality of the final product.

Continuous manufacturing is not new to the industry, but it has become more popular in recent years. Especially in the pharmaceutical industry, it’s becoming the preferred method of producing new medications.

This is because it allows companies to quickly deliver life-saving therapies to patients. In addition, it can be used to create customized medications.

The main disadvantage of this manufacturing process is that it is very capital-intensive and requires many specialized pieces of equipment. Moreover, it can be difficult to stop and restart machinery without causing disruptions in the production flow.

The best way to avoid these problems is to make sure you track all of your production. This will ensure you have the data you need to spot any gaps in your supply chain and avoid production delays.


A manufacturing process is a set of guidelines that help you create products. It can be very complicated and involves many different stages, machinery, tools, equipment, and computerization.

Traditionally, the manufacturing industry was split into five main types of processes — repetitive, discrete, job shop, continuous, and batch. But recently, the manufacturing industry has grown into a much more diverse set of production styles.

The batch manufacturing process is a type of manufacturing that produces batches of identical goods at once, rather than individual items. This method reduces cycle times per product and enables goods to be manufactured flexibly in large quantities.

This method is ideal for businesses that want to create a single, uniform item that is produced in large quantities. It is also a good choice for manufacturing SMEs looking to scale up their operations.

Another major benefit of the batch process is that it allows for changes to be made as products progress through the production line. This is especially useful if a company needs to make small adjustments, such as a change in the size or color of a certain product.

However, this method isn’t as flexible as the assembly line process. It may take time to adjust the setup and tear down if the items in production are different from the ones that were already made.

The complexities of the batch process also mean that a lot must be tracked and managed throughout the entire process. This is important for ensuring that there are no errors in the production of the batch, which can lead to wasted time and money.

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