Lean initiative cycle order

This course provides a deeper understanding of the PMBOK knowledge areas of project integration and procurement applied in the supply chain vendor selection and management process. To keep pace with the continuous moves toward outsourcing of operations and the advancement of technology, companies need to focus on selecting the right suppliers and partnerships to provide the most value to their customers and to remain profitable. This course provides the knowledge, skills, and tools to ensure that you are selecting the right supply chain partners (including 3PL’s) based on your business goals. Emphasis is placed on understanding alternative techniques for supplier selection including applied quantitative decision making techniques.

The elements of 5S are all valuable in their own right but they simply form part of the bigger picture of establishing good practice. They sit alongside the other elements of Lean , or Just in Time, or World Class and some of the elements in, for example, Seiton (standardisation) are in fact straight lifts from textbooks on other forms of improvement activity. There is nothing in any 5S material, for example, to give guidance on improving the clerical processes for generating production paperwork following receipt of a sales order! The answer, surely, is to understand 5S as we understand all aspects of other types of improvement and problem-solving activity and then to agree a change programme for our own business. This is not to say that we must not launch a project which we call "5S" - some businesses have more success if improvement initiatives are launched with a generic, well-publicised term as project name. Equally, this is not a good solution in other organisations. Again, the history and culture of the company or the specific plant have to be taken into account when this decision is taken.

The specific implementation plan should be developed from the facility analysis. The analysis identifies areas of opportunity in every area of the business, including sales, service, engineering, maintenance, production, quality, shipping and administrative functions.

Some lean manufacturing projects within a lean initiative require the tools of Six Sigma to find the improvement answers. The lean manufacturing team needs to be trained to understand when the lean tools must be supplemented to either solve the problem or maximize the improvement.

Kaizen events may use all of the lean tools (and some Six Sigma tools) to meet the team's objective. Kaizen events are conducted on an ongoing basis to achieve a state of “lean”. For example, a process may need a quick throughput improvement. The kaizen blitz could include focused SMED and OEE analysis. The kaizen might have an objective to reduce setup time from 80 minutes to 60 minutes in four days.

It is important to keep an enterprise view with the analysis and road map. No single operation should be improved at the expense of the entire system. For example, if a bottleneck is happening at Process B, improving Process A prior to B only hurts the system worse. A larger-scale example is improving throughput if shipping cannot handle the volume. Although many improvements cause bottlenecks elsewhere, forcing a larger known problem is rarely a good idea.

The road map above is only one example. It could be shown with many different variations. However, there is a logical sequence to many of the tools. Value stream mapping is almost always conducted very early on in the process. The 5-S system provides a foundation for most other tools. TPM is large and plays an important role in OEE improvement and, therefore, must be started early.

The key is to have a plan and get started. The path to lean will not be straight and it never ends. Don't let the pursuit of perfection get in the way of being “better” today.

Lean initiative cycle order

lean initiative cycle order


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