The Lean approach has demonstrated on countless occasions its potential and its ability to transform an existing and traditional company into a success story. Lean Thinking is a universe of different principles, techniques and tools to be explored.
In this article we want to explain well what it means to be Lean, how this approach was born and what are the 5 fundamental Lean concepts that you can immediately take home.
The term Lean Thinking means the search for waste and its elimination in order to produce more with less consumption of resources. (Womack and Jones, 1996).
What this definition does not say is that being lean is a real philosophy and that it requires the total involvement of the whole company.
The concept as we understand it today was born in the middle of the last century in Japan under the name Toyota Production System (TPS).
The father of this system, Taiichi Ohno (1912-1990), worked as an industrial engineer for Toyota and laid the foundations for a radical change of mentality in factory production modes.
His approach was so powerful and effective that it led Toyota from being a small local company in 1940 to becoming the world’s leading auto manufacturer in 2008, a record it still holds today.
In the study published by Womack and Jones in 1990, “The machine that changed the world”, we find the answer to how this has been possible to bridge that commercial gap, through a clear competitive advantage based on the Toyota Production System (TPS):
|Assembly Hours for Cars||31||16|
|Defects every 100 cars produced||130||45|
|Absenteeism among operators||15%||0%|
So what are the pillars of this culture and this approach? What can we learn from this methodology and then apply in our company?
The 5 fundamental concepts on which this approach is based are the following:
Each of these concepts must be adopted pervasively within the entire organization, involving every organizational level and in every business process. This allows you to have all the resources (from the top manager to the line operator) motivated and engaged in their activities, favoring the creation and dissemination of virtuous behaviors aimed at improvement.
TechMass strongly believes in this approach to the point of having created a system designed to encourage and disseminate this methodology.
Starting with the lean installation and start-up mode of our Plug & Play system, which eliminates all waste of resources for long installation and integration processes with PLCs (not required).
The intuitive configurability and high usability eliminate the costs for training courses for system users.
The clear and effective visualization of dashboards and analytics allows you to identify areas for improvement, to gain competitiveness by eliminating waste.
In the same way we believe in the involvement of operators, in training, in the added value that individuals can bring to the system when they are recognized and valued.
For this reason, thinking of TechMass as a factory management software would certainly be an understatement. Rather, we see ourselves as enablers of the Lean methodology and its principles, as we promote and implement it in many aspects of our solution.