U chart
A control chart for evaluating the stability of a process in terms of the average count of events of a given classification per unit occurring in a sample. Syn: count-per-unit chart.

Abbreviation for upper control limit.

Acronym for undesirable effect. Pronounced “oodee.”

Production lines shaped like the letter “U.” The shape allows workers to easily perform several nonsequential tasks without much walk time. The number of workstations in a U-line is usually determined by line balancing. U-lines promote communication.

Unattainable capability
The portion of the production capability that cannot be attained. This is typically caused by factors such as equipment unavailability, suboptimal scheduling, or resource limitations.

Unknown future events that cannot be predicted quantitatively within useful limits; e.g., an accident that destroys facilities, a major strike, or an innovation that makes existing products ­obsolete.

A condition occurring when more personnel are on the payroll than are required to produce the planned output.

Undesirable effects (UDE)
In theory of constraints: Those negative aspects of an environment that are noted so that a current reality tree may be constructed.

Unfair labor practice
Activities by management or labor that violate the National Labor Relations Act. Failure to bargain in good faith is an example.

Uniform-delivered pricing
A type of geographic pricing policy in which all customers pay the same delivered price regardless of their location. A company allocates the total transportation cost among all customers.

Uniform hazardous waste manifest
A U.S. government-required document, which is provided by the applicable state, authorizing the transport of hazardous waste material over public roads, rail, etc.

Uniform resource locator (URL)
A means of locating Web pages regardless of where they are on the Internet.

Unit cost
Total labor, material, and overhead cost for one unit of production, e.g., one part, one gallon, one pound.

In warehousing, the consolidation of several units into larger units for fewer handlings.

Unit of issue
The standard issue quantity of an item from stores, e.g., pounds, each, box of 12, package of 20, or case of 144.

Unit of measure
The unit in which the quantity of an item is managed, e.g., pounds, each, box of 12, package of 20, or case of 144.

Unit of measure (purchasing)
The unit used to purchase an item. This may or may not be the same unit of measure used in the internal systems. For example, purchasing buys steel by the ton, but it may be issued and used in square inches. Syn: purchasing unit of measure.

Units-of-production depreciation
A method of depreciation whereby the amount to be recovered (written off as a period expense) is calculated based on estimated life of the equipment in units to be produced over the life and the number of units produced in a given time period. See: depreciation.

The population, or large set of data, from which samples are drawn. Usually assumed to be infinitely large or at least very large relative to the sample.

Unplanned issue
An issue transaction that updates the quantity on hand but for which no allocation exists.

Unplanned receipt
A receipt transaction that updates the quantity on hand but for which no order exists.

Unplanned repair
Repair and replacement requirements that are unknown until remanufacturing teardown and inspection.

Improvement in operating characteristics.

Upper control limit (UCL)
Control limit for points above the central line in a control chart.

Upper specification limit (USL)
In statistical process control, the line that defines the maximum acceptable level of random output. See: tolerance limits.

Used as a relative reference within a firm or supply chain to indicate moving in the direction of the raw material supplier.

Abbreviation for uniform resource locator.

The number of units or dollars of an inventory item consumed over a period of time.

Usage variance
Deviation of the actual consumption of materials as compared to the standard.

Use as is
Classification for material that has been declared to be unacceptable per the specifications, yet can be used.

Characteristic of computer software or hardware that makes it easy for the user or operator to use the programs or equipment with a minimum of specialized knowledge or recourse to operating manuals.

User interface
The portion of a computer system through which the end user interacts with the system. It may include the keyboard, mouse, touch-screen, and other devices.

1) A measure (usually expressed as a percentage) of how intensively a resource is being used to produce a good or service. Utilization compares actual time used to available time. Traditionally, utilization is the ratio of direct time charged (run time plus setup time) to the clock time available. Utilization is a percentage between 0% and 100% that is equal to 100% minus the percentage of time lost due to machine, tool, worker, etc., unavailability. See: efficiency, lost time factor, productivity. 2) In the theory of constraints, utilization is the ratio of the time the resource is needed to support the constraint to the time available for the resource, expressed as a percentage. See: activation.


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