The lean methodology is a management philosophy that was born with the Toyota Production System.
The tools used in this process seek to eliminate waste, that is, to exclude what is of no value to the customer.
However, for this methodology to work, it is not enough for the company’s managers and engineers to know the Lean system’s advantages.
The working class also has the same need to understand the objectives of lean manufacturing that is behind the numerous practices and tools today applied in the industrial environment.
What are the Key Objectives of Lean Manufacturing?
One of the main objectives of lean manufacturing is continuous improvement. This concept is related to the practice of constantly improving a company’s processes.
Lean manufacturing does not reduce waste in the same way as an external consultancy, which assesses the scenario, makes a diagnosis, proposes changes in the company, and ends its work.
Lean is a philosophy that must be incorporated into the company’s organizational culture. This helps create processes to identify opportunities to wipe waste continuously.
It aims to achieve better and better results continuously. Then, after a process has been improved, this new process is reassessed again after some time in search of new improvements. This cycle is endless.
Before allowing a greater profit, reducing production costs should be considered an opportunity to differentiate.
Lean production decreases costs within its operations, not only in production but also in office and administrative expenditures.
It allows the organization to produce more without having to invest more resources.
It is not difficult to understand that lean will improve your company’s profitability. It will also enable greater and more stable revenues through better customer service and loyalty.
The elimination of waste generates productivity gains and, therefore, cost reduction.
One of the biggest benefits of cost reduction is offering more competitive prices to customers.
By improving production agility, a manufacturer can serve a larger market without having to expand its structure.
Supporting the concept of level production, the idea is to meet the demands of customers’ orders.
Thus, the company remains active daily with all stages in synergy, producing at a constant pace.
The more agile a factory, the greater its production capacity.
It is very important to note, however, that this objective is not an end in itself. In lean, production is increased when it is known that there is a demand to absorb it.
Otherwise, it would not be reducing waste, but increasing it.
Lean manufacturing should not be confused with the practices that increase productivity at the expense of the employee’s quality of life.
In addition to the obvious ethical and human issue, ensuring a good work environment fights waste, reducing turnover, and removing workers due to illnesses and accidents.
Lean manufacturing seeks to eliminate everything that the end consumer does not perceive as value.
By minimizing inventories and streamlining processes, the industry gains in agility and optimization of production time. In practice, lean manufacturing is applied by eliminating 8 wastes.
- Defects: Problems that bring losses to the industry and to customers, when production has flaws that need to be repaired and cause a disruption in the production process, or a direct financial loss.
- Overproduction: Quantities produced that go beyond what is necessary.
- Waiting: Materials, equipment, information, and people who are limited to the previous steps, which generate a loss of time or delay in processes.
- Transportation: Unnecessary displacement of materials, either internally or externally.
- Excess processing: Steps or processes that are not necessary and do not add value to the product.
- Inventory: Raw material accumulated in exaggeration, due to internal information exchange errors, or problems with supplier deliveries.
- Unused Talent: Superficial exploitation of the potential of each employee.
- Motion: Collaborators who need to move around unnecessarily, due to demands of the production process or idealized workstations without taking into account the production stages.
The main benefit of lean manufacturing is the elimination of waste.
With this elimination, the company is able to improve its entire production process and reduce unnecessary costs.
With this, it is possible to gain market competitiveness, besides achieving better prices for end consumers.
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