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Modern Business Comparative And Perspective

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The difference between Fordism and Toyotism ?


Answer :


The Country, which has proved it to become the world’s largest consumer market for the trucks of light nature and the cars carrying passengers, is the United States. General Motors, Chrysler Corp. and Ford Motor Company have lead to a formation of the “Big Three” among the automakers of US (Gereffi 1999).        

The Ford system was further proved by the translation of Toyota by the implementation of the JIT system. The system implemented by Ford in the production plants set up at the earlier times, consisted the concept that by minimization of the time of gaps between the start and end of production is the best and most effective way of production of a vehicle. Ford achieved the same, through complete and higher levels of what is known to be as vertical integration. Though the JIT system has been unable to meet the modern day dialect, it has been apt in describing the system of inventory which is more complex in nature and used widely (Krafcik 1988).

A large scale with a highly efficient and philosophy of production with consistency in the flow was adopted by Toyota. The philosophy was derived from Ford and was applied to the facilities of small scale, which was done in an interesting manner. Ford managed the simple nature because it was unable in achieving the volume for maintaining the standard of the product and the levels of the integration to be done vertically.

On the other hand, Toyota honored the concept of the continuity in the flow of building a network locally, which contained the suppliers for integration with the assembly plant structure. Instead of building a product with standards of the model of Ford, Toyota was able to achieve the flexibility in the production of a variety of products.

Toyota used the principles of continuous flow, which Henry Ford had never thought and would never have made an attempt. The use of the capability of Toyota was being able to stamp the metal parts of the sheet in lot sizes in hundred parts. The stamping was possible, as they had attained the knowledge of changing the stamping dies in minutes instead of hours. The flexibility of the same sort has been an advantage for the competitors who had the art of mastering the same (Liker 2006).

The industry of US was not motionless in the 1980’s and with the advent of the competition from Japan; US worked aggressively towards the improvement of their quality. US discovered that the workers of Japanese firms participated in solving the problems with the formation of a quality circle and the companies had a policy of building the qualities from the start, rather than carrying on the inspection process afterwards. The companies of US decided that they would be competing with having perfection in the cost effective measures and on time deliveries (Liker 2006).

The US companies had taken a decade i.e. from the early 1980s to the early 1990s in figuring out that the Japanese had more techniques than the quality circle formations. The other techniques consisted of statistical process control (SPC) and preventative maintenance. The reason why US took a long time to recognize that Toyota had a leadership in the manufacturing of the automobiles with excellence, was because it only saw, whatever it wanted to see

The system of mass production by Ford also helped them in bringing forward to their current situation and now they stand as the second largest automaker. It also stands as the largest corporate sector in the world but there are major challenges to their success. The major challenge in their success is the interaction of the mega company with the mega plants and the conversion of mass production to the lean production. General Motors, Chrysler and Ford have reached a conclusion that they need to turn lean and they are modeling on the Ford and Toyota Production System, as they regard them as the best system (Utterback and Suárez 1993).

The innovations were performed in an incremental manner, which were lower in price and had lines of attaining a product of high range of volumes. Both varieties of innovation were being led by the General Motors and more particularly for the major changes in the product. Engines change in higher magnitudes annually and the changes have an occurrence with a lower frequency than the characteristics in a chassis. The body plants have a greater flexibility and change more continuously whereas the engine plants have a tendency of changing in a manner with integration and systematic approach occasionally.

Toyotism (Pull System) vs Fordism (Push System)

The concept of Toyotism and Fordism are not simple case of alternative paradigms. The two systems i.e. the organization of production and the system of relationships with labor, have a relation with each other in various ways which are significant in nature.

The concept of Fordism has a system, which is of a single-kind and has large-lot production whereas Toyotism has a system, which is of a multiple-kind and has small-lot production.

Fordism consist the characteristic of pushing up the production by the process preceding to the same while, Toyotism has the characteristic of pushing up the production by the process subsequent to the production. In a more fundamental manner, the concepts are too different in nature as, Toyotism is a multifunctional worker and Fordism is the single-function worker (Dohse et al. 1985).



The country applies a mix of both the systems i.e. Ford and Toyota in the multiple layers of production system for crafting their own system of production. Germany had taken a different route from US. Even though, the production model of Germany had an orientation towards the mass production in the period between 1975 and 1985, there was a development of variety of range of the reforms of labour and programs of modernization in the productions. They were developed after a close cooperation among the association of employers, government and the unions.

he process organization for an instance had a basis of the same principles of the mass production like in US. However, as the country had smaller size of companies and production runs, there was a lower marking for the concerns regarding the economies of the scale. Like US, the performance had a regulation of the standards setting methods of the Taylorist approach. The same was coupled with the scheme of incentive payments which were based on the rules and the procedures determined by the union and councils of work (Naruse 1991).

The new designs of jobs were introduced which aimed at the enlargement of the job and enrichment from the immediate pressures of the assembly line and machinery.

As compared to the counterparts of Japanese firms, the companies of Germany in the 1990’s had a readiness for the rethinking and restructuring of the production model which has deeper meaning. The country was late in comparison to the US and other European countries, as the readiness for adaptation of changes came after sometime. German companies had satisfaction as they did not have the Japanese transplant in the country which would behave as a catalyst of change like in the US companies (Womack Jones and Roos 1990).

The model of lean production had a propagation by the 1990s which came with the model of the just in time for the companies in Germany which seek in the recognition of the models in the efforts of retaining the competition internationally. The designs of the job had an emphasis on the teamwork which was a move away from the traditional way of the production, repair work and quality inspection which were the reason of higher costs.

The process of the organization uses the central concepts of the model of lean production, which is adopted by major companies. In many cases, they are adopted only with the hesitation and in search of compromise with the practices in existing which are to be integrated into a newer approach.        


The interpretation of the Toyotism had seen a dynamic change in the system of Japan and the orientation of zero-buffer and zero-defect which pulls forward the other elements. The elements include teamwork, improvement activities and multi-skilling and the interpretation has a strong emphasis on industrial engineering, which is rooted into the accounts (Taiichi 1988) and (Shigeo 1981).



Dohse, K., U. Jurgens, and T. Nialsch. "From "Fordism" To "Toyotism"? The Social Organization Of The Labor Process In The Japanese Automobile Industry". Politics & Society 14.2 (1985): 115-146. Web.

Gereffi, G. (1999) ‘A Commodity Chains Framework for Analyzing Global Industries’

Krafcik, J.F., 1988. Triumph of the lean production system. MIT Sloan Management Review, 30(1), p.41.

Liker, Jeffrey K. Becoming Lean. 1st ed. New York, NY: Productivity Press, 2006. Print.

Naruse, Tatsuo. "Taylorism And Fordism In Japan". International Journal of Political Economy 21.3 (1991): 32-48. Web.

Ohno, T., 1988. Toyota production system: beyond large-scale production. crc Press.

Shingo, S., 1981. A Study ofthe Toyota Production System.

Utterback, J.M. and Suárez, F.F., 1993. Innovation, competition, and industry structure. Research policy, 22(1), pp.1-21.

Womack, J.P., Jones, D.T. and Roos, D., 1990. Machine that changed the world. Simon and Schuster.


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