Lean implementation emphasizes the importance of optimizing work flow through strategic operational procedures while minimizing waste and being adaptable. The term “lean” was coined to describe Toyota’s business during the late 1980s by a research team headed by Jim Womack, Ph.D., at MIT’s International Motor Vehicle Program. In 1996 their book, Lean Thinking; Banish Waste and Create Wealth in Your Corporation was published based on their in-depth study of Toyota’s fabled Toyota Production System.
The core idea is to maximize customer value while minimizing waste. Simply, lean means creating more value for customers with fewer resources. Lean thinking lays out five Lean manufacturing principles; value, value streams, flow, pull, and perfection.
Lean principles are now being used extensively to move towards smart factories, or Industry 4.0. This is connecting all machines and process to computers and tracking data to track Availability, Performance, and Quality, usually summarized as a single OEE score.
At KAMET we wholeheartedly use these techniques for continual improvement and to increase the value provided to the customer over time.