What is Throughput?

What is Throughput?

What is Throughput? Jonathan Poland

Throughput is a term used in business and engineering to refer to the rate at which a system or process can produce outputs. It is typically measured in units of output per unit of time, such as units per hour or dollars per day.

Improving throughput is an important goal for many organizations as it can lead to increased efficiency and productivity. There are several ways to increase throughput, including:

  1. Reducing bottlenecks: Bottlenecks are points in a system or process where the flow of work is slowed or stopped. Identifying and addressing bottlenecks can help improve throughput.
  2. Streamlining processes: Simplifying and streamlining processes can help reduce the time and resources required to complete tasks, increasing throughput.
  3. Investing in technology: Automation and other technological solutions can help increase throughput by reducing the amount of manual labor required.
  4. Improving training and skill development: Ensuring that employees have the necessary skills and knowledge to perform their tasks effectively can help increase throughput.
  5. Managing inventory and resources effectively: Proper inventory management and resource allocation can help ensure that materials and resources are available when needed, reducing delays and increasing throughput.

Overall, improving throughput is an important strategy for organizations looking to increase efficiency and productivity. By identifying and addressing bottlenecks, streamlining processes, investing in technology, improving employee skills, and managing resources effectively, organizations can improve their throughput and achieve better results.

Here are some common examples of throughput:

  1. Manufacturing: The rate at which a factory produces goods, typically measured in units per hour or day.
  2. Supply chain: The speed at which goods or materials move through the supply chain, from raw materials to finished products.
  3. Customer service: The rate at which customer inquiries or complaints are resolved, typically measured in units per hour or day.
  4. Website performance: The rate at which a website can process and respond to requests, typically measured in page views or transactions per second.
  5. Service industries: The rate at which services are provided, such as the number of haircuts given at a salon per hour.
  6. Retail: The rate at which customers are served and transactions are processed at a retail store, typically measured in transactions per hour or day.
  7. Hospital care: The rate at which patients are seen and treated at a hospital or medical facility, typically measured in patients per hour or day.
  8. Banking: The rate at which financial transactions are processed, such as the number of checks cleared or loans approved per day.
Learn More
Division of Labor Jonathan Poland

Division of Labor

The process of dividing work into specific roles, tasks, and steps is known as division of labor. This allows individuals…

Service Quality Jonathan Poland

Service Quality

Service Quality is determined by the value it holds for customers. This value can vary from person to person and…

Value Added Reseller Jonathan Poland

Value Added Reseller

A value added reseller (VAR) is a company that buys products from manufacturers or distributors and then resells them to…

Types of Market Research Jonathan Poland

Types of Market Research

Market research is the process of systematically gathering and analyzing information about a market, including customers and competitors. This information…

Quality Requirements Jonathan Poland

Quality Requirements

Quality requirements refer to the specific standards that a product, service, process, or environment must meet in order to be…

What is Maker Culture? Jonathan Poland

What is Maker Culture?

Maker culture refers to a collection of subcultures that are centered around the creation and customization of technology and other…

First Principles Thinking Jonathan Poland

First Principles Thinking

Overview First principles thinking is a method of reasoning that involves breaking down complex problems into their most basic and…

Technological Change Jonathan Poland

Technological Change

Technological change refers to the development and adoption of new technologies and the ways in which they transform society and…

Procurement Jonathan Poland


Procurement is the process of acquiring goods or services from external vendors or suppliers. It is an essential part of…

Content Database

Needs Analysis Jonathan Poland

Needs Analysis

Needs analysis is the process of identifying the valuable requirements for a product, service, experience, process, machine, facility, or infrastructure…

Overhead Costs Jonathan Poland

Overhead Costs

Overhead costs, also known as “indirect costs” or “indirect expenses,” are the costs that a company incurs in order to…

Types of Fallacies Jonathan Poland

Types of Fallacies

A fallacy is an error in reasoning that can lead to an incorrect conclusion. Fallacies can be found in arguments,…

Types of Work Jonathan Poland

Types of Work

Work refers to any productive activity or pursuit that is undertaken in order to create value. There are countless types…

Baxter Jonathan Poland


Baxter International Inc. is a global healthcare company that develops and manufactures medical products and services for a wide range…

Payback Period Jonathan Poland

Payback Period

The payback period is the length of time it takes for an investment to recoup its initial cost and start…

Maintainability Jonathan Poland


Maintainability refers to the relative ease and cost of maintaining an entity over its lifetime, including fixing, updating, extending, operating,…

Marketing Campaign Jonathan Poland

Marketing Campaign

A marketing campaign is a coordinated series of marketing efforts that promote a product, service, or brand. The goal of…

What is FMCG? Jonathan Poland

What is FMCG?

Fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) are products that are sold quickly and at a relatively low cost. These products are…