What is Lean Manufacturing, and what are best practices, tools and online templates for teams and organizations?
Definition of Lean Manufacturing
Lean Manufacturing is focused on efforts to reduce waste, improve quality and ultimately make the customer happy. It also highlights the importance of reducing waste, which is defined as unnecessary work which does not add value to the product.
Description of Lean Manufacturing
Most companies have sources of waste, whether it’s workers who are idle or materials that go unused. Any type of waste puts a drag on productivity, resulting in increased costs to the customer and decreased profitability. Lean Manufacturing originally stemmed from Toyota’s effort to eliminate this waste and has now spread to organizations worldwide. The waste that Lean Manufacturing is working to eliminate is broken down into 8 categories:
- Waiting Time
- Extra Motion
- Excess Inventory
- Extra Processing
- Unnecessary Transportation
- Underutilized Talents
In Lean Manufacturing companies, all employees are trained to look out for waste in each of these categories. If found, steps are taken to correct the issues that are creating the waste. The theory is that waste needs to be eliminated because it doesn’t add value for the customer and the customer is not willing to pay extra for it.
Basically, Lean Manufacturing boils down to three things:
- Make the manufacturing system as simple as possible
- Continuously look for ways to improve production and employee training
- Always be on the lookout for ways to improve the design of your product
By following these guidelines, Lean Manufacturing will become a way of life for employees and leadership, decreasing costs and increasing customer satisfaction the most obvious advantageous outcomes.
Tools & Templates
Lean Manufacturing tools can range from spreadsheets to software to presentations based on what is being measured, tracked and improved.
upBOARD's Online Lean Manufacturing Tools & Templates
Unlike most traditional Lean Manufacturing processes, upBOARD’s online Lean Manufacturing tools allow any team or organization to instantly begin working with our web templates and input forms. Our digital platform goes far beyond other software tools by including progress dashboards, data integration from existing documents or other SaaS software, elegant intuitive designs, and full access on any desktop or mobile device.
Learn more about upBOARD’s portfolio of other operations best practice tools and templates including: 5 S System, Business Process Re-engineering, House of Quality, Huddle Boards, Just in Time (JIT), Kaizen, Kanban Boards, Lean Manufacturing, Outsourcing Decision-Matrix, RATER Model, Six Sigma, Supplier Relationship Management (SRM), Theory of Constraints (TOC), Total Quality Management (TQM), Value Stream Mapping, Zero Defects