How to Succeed With the Lean Manufacturing Process

in Manufacture

The lean manufacturing process is an ongoing work, with no possible ending. This is one reason why it is not so easy to "define", even more difficult to feel as if you have arrived. Because it is a never ending process, you are always trying to improve.

Once you have made a commitment to start on your official journey, you will have to decide if you are able to follow through with such an ongoing process process by using your in-house personnel, or if you should hire one of the many lean manufacturing consultants.

A good way to start is by asking people in your industry and company size. A wise man learns from the experience of others. Word of mouth recommendations are always the best as well.

What are some lean manufacturing techniques?

  • Identify major areas of waste
  • High defect rate
  • Exessive inventory
  • Waiting
  • Wasted motion
  • Transport
  • Overproduction

Some of the processes you will use :

5S implementation is one of the smartest things you can do for your business, without a doubt. Your work areas will become orderly, work area will have a place and be in its place], the entire atmosphere will be [happier and more productive]. What more could you ask for! 5S implementation is the best way to begin.

Kaizen and continuous improvement are actually synonymous, the name is Japanese and it has several subtly different meanings, but continuous improvement is best for our purposes.

The Kaizen blitz is one popular method, also known as a Kaizen event. This has become a very useful and common tool in lean manufacturing. Many companies have incorporated it into their business culture very successfully.

Value stream mapping is great program that enables you to see the big picture of where you and where you want to be. It might appear complicated at first, but, as with other aspects of your program, when it is broken down into small steps it is really quite simple.

An overview of six sigma shows you how to strive for quality improvement. The trademark is owned by Motorola, and as such Six Sigma is a "brand name." Because it is also used by countless consultants who use the name of six sigma, you see it in lower case letters when used by consultants, and capital letters when used by Motorola.

How to use the lean manufacturing techniques to eliminate waste

  • Quality-eliminating mistakes
  • Pull systems-flow control
  • One piece flow-intelligent automation
  • Reducing lead times
  • Level loading-mixed model production
  • Manage your time more effectively

Use common sense

If you ask a manufacturer who has successfully implemented the lean manufacturing process, you will find that they truly like it because it is just common sense. One huge difference is that it is monitored and sustained company wide, or at least within a specific department or work area.

Once a system is in place, it is rather like another spoke on a wheel, making it stronger and better. You must use an integrated method if you want to achieve the maximum results.Just as the wheel needs all the spokes, so does a lean manufacturing program need every part of the plan in order to work properly

About us?

Jon Arnett and Randy Hough have been involved in lean manufacturing for manufacturing for over 30 years. Their main focus has been in plastic injection molding and mold making. They have an excellent website designed to give you an understanding of the lean manufacturing process and how to implement your lean program.

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Randy Hough

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How to Succeed With the Lean Manufacturing Process

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This article was published on 2010/04/01