5 Different Types of Manufacturing Processes

5 Different Types of Manufacturing Processes

There are a number of manufacturing processes that can be used to create a finished product. These processes can vary based on the type of raw materials used and how they are transformed into usable forms.

Fladger Associates says that these processes can be broken down into 6 major categories that are used for various purposes and applications. Understanding which process works best for your business can help you to streamline production and reduce costs.


Repetitive manufacturing is a process that uses a series of assembly lines to make the same or similar products over and over again. This type of production is ideal for industries that produce durable goods like cars and electronics, as well as appliances and medical supplies.

In order to get the most out of this manufacturing process, you need to create the necessary material master, bill of materials (BOM), rate routing, and production version for each product. You should also use a product cost collector to capture costs that occur in each of your production lots as lower costs are the main reason why electronics manufacturing in Mexico is growing.

To keep track of actual performance, repetitive manufacturing tracks unit completions and deviations from scheduled rates and quantities over time. As this information is compared to your business’s daily, weekly, or monthly targets, it helps you identify and take corrective action if necessary.

The materials management for this type of manufacturing can involve components being staged adjacent to the production line on a regular basis, typically as existing component quantities are drawn down. This method can reduce control effort and eliminate the need for interim storage.

As a result, this method of production allows you to keep track of production progress more easily and more thoroughly than other types of manufacturing. Moreover, as this is a period-based manufacturing method, you can plan your production quantities by dividing them into time buckets for easier planning and control.

This method of production is a great way to get your goods to market faster and more efficiently, but it can come with its own drawbacks. First, it can lead to overestimated demand and unmet customer expectations. Additionally, it can cause employees to become bored and disengaged, which could negatively impact their productivity.


Discrete manufacturing is a manufacturing process that produces distinct items, such as automobiles, furniture, smartphones, airplanes, and toys. These products are identifiable and easy to separate and recycle, unlike process manufacturing, which produces products that are not distinguishable and cannot be broken down into their component parts.

Typically, discrete manufacturing takes the input materials and parts of products through multiple production steps that may include machining, assembly, etching, fastening, polishing, stitching, packaging, and more. Additionally, discrete manufacturing processes may involve specialized equipment like a piston liquid filling machine.

It is closely related to repetitive manufacturing, but the products that are created during this process are often much more diverse than those created through repetitive manufacturing. This is to accommodate the changing demands of customers and technological advancements that affect product design.

This manufacturing process runs 24/7, produces large order quantities, and uses raw materials that are gases, liquids, powders, or slurries rather than solid-state components like metal. It is used in oil refining, paper production, chemical and cosmetic manufacturing, and some types of food and beverage production.

These processes are largely automated, but they still require a Bill of Material and Routing data. Generally, the BoM is more important than routing data in this type of manufacturing, as it contains details of how to assemble and disassemble the products.

Discrete manufacturing is ideal for manufacturers that want to make a high number of distinct products while maintaining a consistent level of quality. It is also an excellent choice for companies that use robots and other automation equipment to increase production efficiency and reduce costs.


Streamlining your operations can boost profits, increase productivity, and improve your business’s reputation. Choosing the right production procedure is a matter of matching it to your type of product, consumer demand, your industry’s competition, and your budget.

For example, a continuous manufacturing process would be more suitable for the production of large-scale, standardized products like steel, chemicals, gas, and oil. For smaller manufacturers, though, churning out a non-stop line of machines is not the most cost-effective or efficient approach.

Batch production is a more traditional method of manufacturing. It involves mixing and processing raw material into a finished product before storing it in a warehouse until needed. This approach may be more effective for smaller enterprises or startups with limited resources.

In the pharmaceutical industry, the continuous manufacturing process has gained popularity as a more sustainable and environmentally friendly alternative to batch production. It allows drug makers to respond more quickly and nimbly to market changes, which can reduce shortages, waste, and delays in product delivery.

Continuous manufacturing is also a good option for a business that produces custom-designed goods and products. The ability to define a product by different criteria, such as time stamps or raw input materials, can help manufacturers track batches more easily and recall fewer items in the event of a defect.

In addition, automated monitoring can detect issues long before they become a serious problems. This can make it easier to spot equipment wear and tear, which reduces maintenance costs and increases the lifespan of your machinery. For Printed and Material Solutions make sure to check General Label.


A batch manufacturing process is a type of industrial production where a product or a series of products are created in a single run. This can be a useful method for a company that needs to create a certain number of items in a small amount of time, such as electronics or automobiles.

A lot of companies use this manufacturing method, such as automobiles, durable consumer goods like refrigerators and clothes dryers, and electronic components. However, there are some drawbacks to using batch manufacturing.

The most common disadvantage of this manufacturing method is that it can lead to errors in the finished product, which can cost a company money and time. For example, the wrong size or style of the component could cause the final product to fail.

Another issue with this manufacturing method is that it can take a long time to set up and tear down a large production line, especially if the items being made are vastly different in design.

This can be a problem for businesses that have a lot of similar products that need to be produced quickly, such as food, paper, and pharmaceuticals. The equipment used to produce the products in this process must be cleaned and prepared for a new batch before the next run can begin.

Unlike the other manufacturing processes, this one is dependent on customer demand or the availability of ingredients and raw materials for that specific project. This is also the type of manufacturing that uses the most equipment, so it might be a good choice for businesses that need to quickly produce a large number of goods.

Discrete manufacturing is the process that most people think of when they hear the term “manufacturing.” It includes assembly lines, repetitive processes, consistency, and quality control. Often, products that are produced in discrete are standardized in their design, such as circuit boards and smartphones.

3D Printing

3D printing is the construction of a physical object from a digital three-dimensional model. This can be done through a variety of processes, which involve material being added together (such as plastics, liquids, or powder grains being fused), typically layer by layer.

This process completely reinvents the way things are conceived, designed, and produced. It enables manufacturers to create high-quality products at a fraction of the cost of traditional techniques and provides unmatched flexibility for product teams.

It also allows product teams to offer more customization, eliminate assembly steps, reduce storage costs, and produce cost-effective low volume runs. As a result, 3D printing has become an important part of many industrial supply chains.

The first step in the manufacturing process is to design the product using CAD software. This is often done by a specialist who can work closely with a company’s design team to ensure that their designs are accurate and efficient.

After the design is complete, it can be sent to a 3D printing service for manufacture. This involves a process called slicing, which converts the CAD model into hundreds or thousands of layers. The slicing file is then converted into a G-code file, which instructs the 3D printer on how to build the final product.

A number of materials can be used in the process, including popular thermosets and thermoplastics, composite filaments, photosensitive resins, and more. Depending on the application, these can be printed at different temperatures and with varying properties.

A major challenge in the 3D printing process is post-processing, which is required to finish the product. This can include sanding or smoothing to create a required finish, removing support struts that allow the material to be built up into a specified shape, heat treatment, and final machining.