Do you want to know “What is Lean Manufacturing.”
Firstly read our page on: “What is Lean.”
in this guide, we will explain to you the application of the Lean Principles in the Manufacturing.
Lean + Manufacturing
Ok, we already spoke about Lean.
Is not it?
I would like to cite Wikipedia for “Manufacturing.”
Manufacturing or manufacturing process are the steps through which raw materials are transformed into a final product. The manufacturing process begins with the creation of the materials from which the design is made. These materials are then modified through manufacturing processes to become the required part.
here I will explain to you how to apply the Lean Principles
to a simulated mini company of manufacturing.
Let us call this mini-company: ACME STAMP
The journey of ACME STAMP in Lean.
ACME STAMP is a company of manufacturing with
a very simple 3 steps process but
with a lot of problems.
They buy coils of aluminum,
they cut, then they stamp, and finally they pack.
A very simple process!
Is not true?
To sum up in a list the process is:
the problems they have are:
- They do not have too much space
- They are not able to ship on time
- Someone told them they have too much inventory
How could they solve them?
Here is the kicker!
Lean Manufacturing approach to tranform the process in a Lean Process!
Continue reading, and you will discover.
First Step is always data.
Firstly they decided to give a number to their problems.
Problem n°1 was: We do not have too much space.
After some simple question as:
How much space we have to stock the raw material?
How much a coil measure?
The problem became clearer!
Problem n°1 became: We have 100 sqm for the raw material, and a coil is 10 sqm.
For this reason that we cannot have more than 10 coils in the company.
Do you think is clearer?
Is it something you can work on?
I think definitely yes.
with the same approach, they were able to find
a clearer definition of the others 2 problems.
Problem n°2: We do not ship on time 32 times over 100.
Problem n°3: We have 12 coils in the raw materials and 1000 pieces in WIP and Zero in the finished good area. Is it too much inventory? We will see.
We are here for the customer
especially in big companies, we forget that we have a job because the customer pays us.
Will be you a satisfied customer if you do not have your pizza on time? or with a poor quality?
sometimes we spend more time chatting and fighting with other people rather than satisfying the customer request.
Acme understood that and refocused on the customer.
This was the results:
Our main customer is the “Blend inc.” and they want 150 pieces a week!
Training on “What is Lean Manufacturing”
I know what you are thinking when you have read the word training.
You are thinking:
- How much cost?
- Have I to remove people from working?
- They will lose time
These thoughts will lead you to close the company.
If you want to embrace the Lean Manufacturing you have to understand that people are smarter than you suppose.
In other words, following the Lean Principles, you have to put the people first. You have to count on them.
Remember the Lean Principle n°10 of the Toyota Way.
“Develop exceptional people and teams who follow your company’s philosophy.”
Here we have a video with the 14 Principles for you!
they decided to invest in a massive training with the title “What is Lean Manufacturing”.
The rhythm of Lean Manufacturing – Takt Time
After following the Lean Training,
Acme decided to calculate the Takt Time for their major customer “Blend Inc” and here there is calculation they did.
Here is the formula to use.
Here their Takt Time Calculation on a weekly base.
Available Time per week = 5 days * 1 shift * 7 hours = 35 hours
Customer Request = 150 piece / week
What does it means ?
This is the most important time you have to know!
Here it is a little simplified to easily understanding but in the next future, we will produce a dedicated long page on the Takt Time!
All been said,
this Takt Time on 14 Minutes is the speed the company has to follow to meet the customer request.
In other words,
every 14 minutes there is the customer out of the company asking for 1 piece!
Is this clear?
Imagine every 14 minutes the customer out of the door asking for his piece.
This is true for any process at ACME.
Has ACME the capacity to meet the customer demand?
Once the Takt Time was calculated they started to ask themselves if the machines have the capacity to satisfy the customer request.
In order to answer this question, they did a study on the Cycle Time of each operation.
Here the results:
Cutting –> Cycle Time 3 minutes
Stamping –> Cycle Time 16 minutes
Packing –> Cycle Time 9 minutes
they created a diagram called Takt Time Bar Chart to perform some evaluation.
The Takt Time Bar chart can be easily created by putting Takt Time and the cycle time of the operation on the same diagram.
Here what they created:
As you can see there was an operation that was with a time more than the Takt Time and it is called Takt Time Violation.
How to solve the Takt Time Violation?
Do you remember the Toyota’s house?
one of the pillars is the “jidoka” that is “stop at abnormalities (and fix the problem)”.
In other words the company, by following the continuous improvement, has to fix this otherwise, ACME will be never able to meet the customer demand.
how start with this process of continuous improvement?
I found for you a great video with a step by step guide for the Lean Management.
> See now, 6 minutes worth to see.
the five steps are:
coming back to the question, to start the continuous improvement I strongly suggest to follow this five steps.
Certainly, at the beginning, you will fell strange but believe me, it works great.
As a result,
here the new Takt Time Bar Chart of ACME.
No more Takt Time Violation.
If you have one or more Takt Time Violation you will be not able to meet the customer request.
What happened ?
After applying the 5 steps the ACME was able to reduce the Cycle Time of the stamping from 16 minutes to 10 minutes.
In other words, they were very focused on the removal of the 7 wastes and by some other Lean Manufacturing Tools like 5S Methodology and Kanban System they were able to obtain the following results:
To sum up, with an investment in the training and execution on “what is lean manufacturing“, the ACME got an improvement in on time delivery and at the same time a reduction in inventory.
If you are thinking that this is a commercial, YOU ARE WRONG!
It is not easy … but it works!
we tried to explain in a simplified way what is lean manufacturing.
In reality, it is more complicated but some Lean concepts are the basics and were explained here.
- Clarify the problem with numbers for you and the company
- Train all the people in the company on “what is lean manufacturing”
- Calculate Takt Time
- Evaluate the cycle time of the processes and any Takt Time violation
- Involve the people in solving problems by the 5 steps of Lean Management.
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