Reducing or eliminating waste is one of the major principles of lean manufacturing, practiced by Solar Innovations, Inc.. Waste is often considered synonymous with trash; however, in lean manufacturing, it is categorized into seven areas:
Transportation: Though required and nearly impossible to eliminate, the movement of products between manufacturing functions can often be reduced by re-organizing the process flow.
Inventory: Attempting to run large batches, as is the case with traditional manufacturing, requires stocking vast inventories for both raw materials and work in progress (WIP).
Motion: Any unnecessary movement, whether lifting, walking, or transferring components should be reduced or eliminated whenever possible.
Waiting: Any idle time for either employees or equipment, caused by a host of problems, is considered waste and should be eliminated.
Overproduction: Completing finished products before the order has been placed or producing more than will be ordered leads to significant waste in a number of areas.
Over-Processing: Completing extra, unnecessary work that adds no value to the final product.
Defects: Any defect that leads to rework, waste, delivery delays, excess paperwork, and time for investigations.
There are two useful mnemonics to help you remember these ideas: TIM WOOD and WORM PIT:
|T||– Transport||W||– Waiting|
|I||– Inventory||O||– Overproduction|
|M||– Motion||R||– Rejects|
|W||– Waiting||M||– Motion|
|O||– Overproduction||P||– Processing|
|O||– Over-processing||I||– Inventory|
|D||– Defects||T||– Transport|
Implementing Lean Manufacturing is the most efficient way to reduce and eliminate wastes in your production processes and even your office processes.