Prime objective of waste elimination from the
system is achieved with lean manufacturing technique and all tools.
Based on this requirement, Just In Time (JIT) techniques, Total
Quality Management (TQM), Total Productive Maintenance (TPM),
Flow charts, Workplace Redesigning techniques are used.
Basically, lean manufacturing technique consists
of four steps. First step is to realize that there are wastes
in the system to be removed. Although this seems like a crazy
idea, this is the step which creates the requirement for the movement
towards lean manufacturing. Many organizations do not realize
that they have tons of hidden wastes with them. Therefore they
do not have the requirement to remove them from the system. So
they will have their problems forever and they will try to find
solutions for these problems forever.
Once you realize that there are wastes to be
removed from the system, in the second step, you will identify
the different forms of that waste. Further, in this step you will
identify the causes for these wastes. This is very important step
in the process. Lean manufacturing never promotes treating the
symptoms. Rather it believes treating the causes and cures the
problems permanently. In this step tools like Ishikawa diagrams
or cause and effect diagrams can be used for good effect.
In the third step, comes the solution finding
for the identified root causes. One golden rule to be followed
in this step is adhering to the basic lean manufacturing principle
of seeing the total picture. Do not find solutions by only looking
at causes on their surface. It is very important to identify the
solution. It is even more important to identify the effect of
the solution to the entire system. For an example if you are trying
to reduce the line down time, it is very important to make sure
the solution is not going to increase the lot sizes heavily and
make the net effect on the organization a negative.
Final step is the implementation process and
making sure things are going in the intended way. Here the solutions
will be tested and implemented. Then these solutions will be tweaked
to accommodate practical difficulties occur in the implementation
process. User training and follow-up are among the most important
things in this step of lean manufacturing technique. This step
generally takes long time.
In each and every step mentioned above, many
tools will be used to achieve the goals of each step. Make sure
to look at the entirety, not a part of the problem. Solution you
find must have a positive effect on the entire system.