Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Halsey - Handling Labor for Efficiency Improvement - Going

Because Halsey and Gantt both grant day wages as a
minimum and add something more if a man exceeds stand-
ard performance, there is an unfortunately general but ill-
informed impression that the systems are much alike.
Psychologically that is, in their interpretation of and
appeal to human emotions they are almost diametrically
unlike. They seek similar results (an increase of produc-
tion) and they offer a similar reward (pay for time saved)
but by contradictory policies. Halsey is so desirous
not to " stir up things " that he scarcely lets the men know
that times are being studied. Gantt is so desirous to make
large output possible that he would make most radical and
far-reaching changes if necessary to remove causes of in-
efficiency. Halsey relies entirely on the workman's ability
to find ways of shortening the standard time. Gantt
analyzes each job scientifically, resolves it into its elements,
determines the best way and the minimum time for per-
forming each, and will not even let a workman try to earn
bonus until the man has been thoroughly instructed by an
expert. Halsey abhors the idea of setting any " task " as
the limit a man must reach. Gantt glories in the " task "
as a stimulus to effort, and makes such a task the goal a man
must reach before bonus begins. Halsey tempts the man
on by at least a small premium for even a trifling gain in the
time used. Gantt gives no bonus until the very large gain
necessary to reach his task limit has been made, and then
he gives a great big bonus 25 per cent or 50 per cent
all at once.

Halsey avoids class distinctions by making the passage
from day-wage earnings only to premium earnings a progress
of insensible gradations. Gantt emphasizes class distinction
not only by the sharp and wide break between day wages
and bonus earning, but also by encouraging outward signs
and symbols of bonus earning encouraging the group of
bonus workers and the creation of a bonus society, entry
into which is a desirable goal for those who are still in the
no-bonus class.

These things are really more important in dealing with
men than questions of 20 per cent, or 30 per cent, or 50
per cent premium ; and in these things the philosophies of
Gantt and Halsey take widely different and opposing views.

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