Lean manufacturing is a concept that’s widely employed in the manufacturing world, but it came from a very simple idea. The philosophy behind it is that manufacturers ensure their customers do not have to pay for waste or mistakes, but for value. Therefore, companies are pressed to increase their service’s or product’s value to ensure they can gain maximum profit while keeping customers happy. Lean manufacturing is about driving up value and pushing for continuous improvement in manufacturing processes.
By implementing a lean manufacturing philosophy, companies can create corporate objectives and establish a sense of direction. Then, they can eliminate those processes that do not deliver value, while tracking any process improvements using reliable metrics to measure success. Doing so gives company executives a clear image of what’s working, and what needs to be changed.
Lean manufacturing has allowed thousands of businesses to remain profitable even while the economy has been in ruins, because it allows them to be cost-effective. Therfore, it’s safe to say that lean manufacturing methods are proven in that they can help companies to maintain economic viability no matter what.
Companies that follow a lean manufacturing philosophy strive to eliminate waste as much as possible by examining production processes and constantly looking to improve them. There are five principles companies must adhere to if they wish to implement a lean philosophy: identifying value, value-stream mapping, creating flow, establishing pull and seeking perfection.
The biggest benefit of this philosophy is that it helps manufacturers to eliminate defects in their products. It’s said that the best way to streamline this process is to use more “pull” instead of more “push”. Essentially, it means that the later stages of production dictate what happens in the earlier stages.
Companies that don’t adhere to lean manufacturing principles may generate thousands of pieces at the early stage of the assembly line, before trying to push them along. However, it means that defects may not be discovered until many thousands of pieces have already been manufactured, which means those pieces are wasted. With lean manufacturing systems, it’s likely that defects will be picked up earlier, thereby minimizing the waste.
A big part of lean manufacturing in modern times is automation. Packaging systems / sträckfilmsmaskin gives workers more time to focus on what really matters in production. This helps to eliminate distractions too, which can be the downfall for any company.
Because lean manufacturing’s prevalent theme is waste elimination, the main task for managers is to identify areas of production where waste occurs. There are many reasons for waste, including inventory, overproduction, unnecessary production steps and so on. Managers and employees need to constantly examine production processes to see where improvements can be made.
Metrics to measure success
The key to lean manufacturing is establishing a set of metrics to identify trends and record progress towards the chief goal of waste elimination. In addition, metrics are needed to properly promote the lean manufacturing philosophy to all workers involved, so they can play a part in the improvement process and be rewarded for any good ideas they have.