7 Ways Lean Manufacturing Can Benefit Your Business
If you run a business in the manufacturing sector, chances are you’ve heard the term “lean manufacturing” before. Perhaps you’ve heard it as “flex manufacturing” or even “cellular manufacturing”, but all these terms apply to the same concept. It is an idea of working smarter and more efficiently – or doing more with less.
Developed by Toyota after WWII, lean manufacturing sought to remove the “muda” (Japanese for any material or activity that takes up resources but does not add value) from manufacturing operations.
Now you may be wondering how to implement this concept into your own business and what the benefits might be. If that’s the case, keep reading.
How to implement
For each business, implementing lean manufacturing is going to be unique. Equipment, processes and procedures may all need to be adjusted in order for your company to achieve maximum efficiency. An efficiency audit from a technologies solutions company like Duroair is a great place to start.
Benefits of lean manufacturing
Again, since each company is different, results will vary. Here are just a few of the benefits that your business can realize through lean manufacturing.
1. Improved productivity and efficiency – your company’s bottom line is ultimately going to be based on how productive it is. Whether you are in the automotive industry or producing aerospace components, the less time that is wasted from start to finish, the more units you can move out the door.
2. Space efficiency – an often overlooked “waste” area is wasted space. More efficient processes will mean less inventory in storage and more efficient technologies can reduce the physical footprint of your line production – all adding to the efficiency of your operation.
3. Quality improvement – faster production cycles help improve quality. By applying lean manufacturing to the operation, it generally reduces the production cycle time, therefore improves quality.
4. Visual management – When set up correctly, a plant that operates under lean manufacturing is easy to scan visually. Oftentimes, the entire operation can be seen from a single vantage point, meaning that potential problems can be spotted and addressed quickly.
5. Less manpower – improved processes make it possible for less people to accomplish more. This can be seen as an opportunity to either reduce your payroll costs or to increase your output.
6. Less problems – since work instructions become more standardized, everyone on the line will know exactly what is expected of them. When issues do arise, they will be easier to recognize and address.
7. Safer work environment – the more organized your workplace is and the clearer the work instructions, the safer your workplace will also become.
While the extent of these benefits will naturally differ from plant to plant, every manufacturing company can benefit from implementing lean manufacturing and eliminating waste. If you would like to take the first step in this process, contact Duroair and learn how we can help.