Monday, November 30, 2009

Seven wastes

Toyota has identified seven major types of non-value-adding waste in business or manufacturing processes, which are described below. You can apply these to product development, order taking, and the office, not just a production line.

There are seven wastes or muda in Japanese. To make it easy to remember, we could say in abbreviation become DOWTIME.

The seven wastes are easy to identify. Eliminating the seven wastes will increase the company profits.

  1. Defect
    Any repairs of defects or reworks. Production of defective parts or correction. Repair or rework, scrap, replacement production, and inspection mean wasteful handling, time, and effort.

  2. Over Production
    Producing parts too much or too soon. Producing items for which there are no orders, which generates such wastes as overstaffing and storage and transportation costs because of excess inventory.

  3. Waiting
    Waiting for parts or information. Workers merely serving to watch an automated machine or having to stand around waiting for the next processing step, tool, supply, part, etc., or just plain having no work because of stockouts, lot processing delays, equipment downtime, and capacity bottlenecks.

  4. Transportation
    Any transport of the product. Carrying work in process (WIP) long distances, creating inefficient transport, or moving materials, parts, or finished goods into or out of storage or between processes.

  5. Inventory
    Anymore than the minimum to get the job done. Excess raw material, WIP, or finished goods causing longer lead times, obsolescence, damaged goods, transportation and storage costs, and delay. Also, extra inventory hides problems such as production imbalances, late deliveries from suppliers, defects, equipment downtime, and long setup times.

  6. Motion
    Any motion of the worker that does not add value. Any wasted motion employees have to perform during the course of their work, such as looking for, reaching for, or stacking parts, tools, etc. Also, walking is waste.

  7. Excess Process
    Over processing or processing variability. Taking unneeded steps to process the parts. Inefficiently processing due to poor tool and product design, causing unnecessary motion and producing defects. Waste is generated when providing higher-quality products than is necessary.

Muda (waste)—Non-value-added. The most familiar M includes the eight wastes mentioned in earlier chapters. These are wasteful activities that lengthen lead times, cause extra movement to get parts or tools, create excess inventory, or result in any type of waiting.

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