Between 1893 and 1911, F.W Taylor published a series of books about management that defines the basis of a new science: The scientific organization of work . On the one hand, he notes the dawdling of workers, who are at the same time influenced by their natural way to be lazy and the strategy of managers who use the technical progress to increase the output instead of encouraging, by the rise of the wages, an increase of productivity. In addition, he notices the rejection of the workers showing zeal by their fellow-members. According to him, the awkwardness and the inefficiency of the daily acts, the bad execution of the spontaneous movements cause immense losses. He thinks that prosperity can only come from the greatest possible productivity of men and machines. He wants each worker to make a work which is compatible with his personal skills, while being involved, with the fastest pace and the maximum effectiveness. From this he will create three principles that are the basis of Taylor's system: the vertical division of work (Every intellectual work must be removed of the workshop to be concentrated in the offices of planning and organization), the horizontal division of work, a wage that is based on yields and a control of time.
[...] It is now suggested to them not to trust in an organization which authoritatively plans the work (bureaucracy) but rather to organize their work within a team (team-work), from concrete and specific problems that arise from each step of the production. Because of automation and robotization, firms ask for workers new skills, the production processes repose before all on the better integration of workers. Workers have to be able to carry out the design, the breakdown service, the maintenance and the quality controls. [...]
[...] There are also the constraints of customers, the delivery time has to be respected, and the importance of the group forms a social pressure over individuals. Work is always constrained, but the nature of the constraint is different. According to Linhart the requirement for quality gives a new legitimacy to taylorized work: it is not any more the owner, but the market that imposes Taylorization. is the customer who constitutes the objective standard, charged to empty the social relations of their conflictuality”. [...]
[...] To analyze if there's a definitive break from Fordism and Taylorism we have to analyze the new work organizations. A new organization of work, post-Taylorism will emerge. Post-taylorism is founded on several principles. First it is necessary to cure the dysfunctions related to Taylorism, this new strategy is founded on quality, short delivering time and competitiveness in order reach a greater flexibility. We thus reach a functional flexibility. The second principle deals with the workforce, indeed, as new technologies require fewer physical efforts and less repetitive work, firms expect more intelligence from workers. [...]
[...] Why did these models come under pressure during the late 20th Century? The Fordist Model will be hit by two crises, the first one during the 60s and 70s and the second one during the 80s and 70s. At the end of the sixties the first aspect is the social crisis. This crisis appears with the acceleration of rates which generate rejects, wasting and defects. The effects of infernal rates are confirmed by working conditions (noise, odors, rate and repetitivity) which are worse, the routine generates overwork and accidents, the absenteeism increases, the turnover rises and the number of claims and conflicts rises. [...]
[...] man who has a sharp and intelligent spirit is, for this reason even, inapt to exert this job because of the terrible monotony of a task of this kind”. The only motivation of such a work can thus be only money. For this reason, a wage based on productivity is essential: to each task corresponds an execution time, the watch then determines the remuneration of the worker (the difference between the worker's time and to reference time). The wage based on productivity allows fighting against the dead periods, if they rise from a bad organization or spontaneous tendency of the workers to choose their own rhythm working dawdling”). [...]
Online readingwith our online reader
Content validatedby our reading committee