Work Measurement Program

Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS)

Student Walking on the Fairfax Campus

Analysis of the Indirect Multiplier

The indirect multiplier for each plant was calculated by dividing the time required to complete the indirect tasks divided by the time required to complete the direct tasks. The average Indirect Multiplier for the total population was 0.61, which is 24% lower than the 0.8 multiplier that is currently used by FSIS. However, results indicate an indirect multiplier is not a valid methodology for time allocation.

The figure below illustrates the indirect task time plotted against the corresponding direct task time. The plot shows no obvious trends or correlation between the direct and indirect task time. A regression line is plotted for the data in black; the slope of this line shows the average relationship between indirect and direct time - the required multiplier. Because the slope is so close to zero, the line is essentially "flat", which indicates that the amount of indirect time needed is not related to the amount of direct time needed for the task. For reference, the 1.8 multiplier is also plotted, in red, to illustrate the line that would be expected to reflect such a multiplier.

Indirect Multiplier
Indirect vs Direct Task Times

The trend of the plot indicates there is no correlation between direct and indirect task time and therefore, utilizing a multiplier to establish time required is not a valid method. Instead, indirect effort for the MT60 task can be expected to take approximately the same amount of time whenever the MT60 task is performed.

Rather than the multiplier concept used previously by the FSIS to predict the amount of time needed to execute the indirect work associated with the MT60 sampling program, the above analysis indicates that instead, it is more appropriate to assume a fixed amount of time for indirect work, as is done with direct labor for the sampling program.