A method of creating a self-sustaining culture that perpetuates an organized, clean, and efficient work place. English words approximate the Japanese originals:
Sort - (Seiri) Clearly distinguish between what is needed and what is not needed to perform a given work process.
Set in Order - (Seiton) Organize those things that are needed, making it easy for users to locate, use and return them.
Shine - (Seiso) Clean all aspects of the area, including floors, machines and furniture.
Standardize - (Seiketsu) Maintain and improve the first three S’s in addition to personal orderliness and neatness.
Sustain - (Shitsuke) Achieve the discipline or habit of maintaining the correct 5S procedures."
Forces consensus building; unifies culture around a simple, systematic methodology; also becomes a communication tool that follows a logical narrative and builds over years as organization learning; A3 metric nomenclature for a paper size equal to 11”x17”
A process to organize and prioritize brainstormed ideas.
A line indicator light or board hung above the production line to act as a visual control. Andons are used to visually signal an abnormal situation.
Annual Improvement Priorities. In Strategy Deployment, those initiatives that we need to achieve this year, and will enable us to reach our overall 3-5-year Breakthrough Objectives.
In Policy Deployment, those current year objectives that will allow you to reach your 3-5 year breakthrough objectives.
Part designated on an engineering drawing that requires approval for appearance characteristics, such as color, grain, texture, etc…
Automation with a human touch or transferring human intelligence to a machine. This allows the machine to detect abnormalities or defects and stop the process when they are detected. Also known as Jidoka.
A method from TPM (Total Productive Maintenance) for engaging operators to carry out basic maintenance activity (such as cleaning, lubrication, and inspections).
The process of automatically decrementing perpetual inventory records, based on the bill of materials of a given product. Normally triggered by shipment and invoicing to a customer, backflushing is used to eliminate wasteful inventory transactions.
An improvement tool whereby a company measures its performance or process against other companies' best practices, determines how those companies achieved their performance levels and uses the information to improve its own performance.
A way or method of accomplishing a business function or process that is considered to be superior to all other known methods.
Bill of Material (BOM)
A BOM can exist for a product – that details the components that comprise the fixture. A BOM can also exist for a job, project, or order.
The leader of the project team responsible for applying the Lean process. A high level of Lean Certification.
BDO - Black Dot Owner
An individual who "owns" the deliverables and has primary responsibility for a specific Annual Improvement Priority (AIP) within the Strategic Development process.
The place in the value stream that negatively affects throughput; as a resource capacity limitation, a bottleneck will not allow a system to meet the demand of the customer.
A form used to track performance (Plan vs. Actual) on Strategy Deployment Objectives. Metrics usually reviewed with top management on a monthly basis.
BTO - Break Through Objectives
In Strategy Deployment, those objectives characterized by multi-functional teamwork, significant change in the organization, significant competitive advantage and major stretch for the organization.
BPM - Business Process Management
Converts strategy into balanced dashboards, measures the effectiveness and efficiency of the strategy execution, identifies key processes to drive the business strategy and aligns/cascades dashboards at multiple levels.
Determination of the experimental relationship between the quantity being measured and the output of the device that measures it; where the quantity measured is obtained through a recognized standard of measurement.
Quantified by the index Cpk; can be determined only after the process is in statistical control.
Communication occurring vertically or horizontally in an organization with the goal of attaining common understanding and consensus.
That which produces an effect or brings about a change.
Cause and Effect Diagram
A problem-solving tool used to establish relationships between effects and multiple causes.
Grouping machines or processes that are connected by work sequence in a pattern that supports flow production.
An approach in which manufacturing work centers (cells) have the total capabilities needed to produce an item or group of similar items; contrasts to setting up work centers on the basis of similar equipment or capabilities, in which case items must move among multiple work centers before they are completed.
Japanese term for “Load-Load”. It refers to a production line raised to a level of efficiency that allows the operator to simply load the part and move on to the next operation. No effort is expended on unloading. (see Hanadashi).
A process owner who provides strategic guidance for a project but usually is not a fulltime member of the project team.
As used in manufacturing, the time from when the last “good” piece comes off of a machine until the first “good” piece of the next product is made on that machine. Includes warmup, first piece inspection and adjustments. Changeover times can be reduced through the use of S.M.E.D.
Defines the following parameters of the event: business case, target/goals, deliverables, opportunity, scope and team.
The ability of any organization or enterprise to dominate in the national and international markets, through offering quality products or services, which are exceeding the requirements of the customers.
A concept where items are processed and moved directly from one processing step to the next, one piece at a time. Also referred to as "one-piece flow" and "single piece flow."
Immediate actions taken to bring performance that is tracking below expectations back into the proper trend. Requires root cause analysis.
CTQ - Critical to Quality
The key measurable characteristics of a product or process whose performance standards or specification limits must be met in order to satisfy the customer.
CT - Cycle Time
The total time from the beginning to the end of your process, as defined by you and your equipment. Cycle time includes process time, during which a unit is acted upon to bring it closer to an output, and delay time, during which a unit of work is spent waiting to take the next action.
Daily Management - Attention each day to those issues concerned with the normal operation of a business.
A set of metrics, usually not more than five or six, that provide an “at-a-glance” summary of a Team, Project or Business’ status.
Factual information used as a basis for reasoning, discussion, or calculation; often refers to quantitative information.
Sources of customer irritation. Defects are costly to both customers and to manufacturers or service providers. Eliminating defects provides cost benefits.
DFMA - Designed for Manufacture and Assembly
A philosophy that strives to improve costs and employee safety by simplifying the manufacturing and assembly process through product design.
DMAIC- Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control
Methodology used when there is an unknown problem and an unknown solution. It is a robust data and process analysis tool used to determine the root cause of problems and to develop high-impact solutions.
That which was produced by a cause.
Measures how well a customer’s critical to quality requirements are satisfied.
Measures how many resources are required to be effective, i.e., how well did we use our resources in completing tasks.
EQDC - Enterprise Risk, Quality, Delivery, Cost
Metrics used for Operations, Plants and Distribution Centers.
FMEA - Failure Mode Effects Analysis
A disciplined approach used to identify possible failures of a product or service and then determine the frequency and impact of the failure. A procedure and tools that help to identify every possible failure mode of a process or product, to determine its effect on other sub-items and on the required function of the product or process. The FMEA also is used to rank and prioritize the possible causes of failures as well as develop and implement preventative actions, with responsible persons assigned to carry out these actions.
"A chart that resembles a fish skeleton, with a main spine and branches (bones) drawn at a slant off the spine; used for quality control in two main ways:
1. As a cause-and-effect diagram, where the spine denotes an effect and the branches are cause factors.
2. As a subdivision of quality requirements, where the spine represents a quality objective and the branches describe subsidiary traits or measurements that are important but are not the end in themselves. (Sometimes referred to as a Reverse Fishbone)"
FG - Finished Goods
Completed Product ready for Sale.
A simple problem-solving method of analyzing a problem or issue by asking “Why” five times. The root cause should become evident by continuing to ask why a situation exists.
The progressive achievement of tasks along the value stream so that a product proceeds from design to launch, order to delivery, and raw a product proceeds from design to launch, order to delivery, and raw materials into the hands of the customer with no stoppages, scrap or backflows.
A logical, efficient, and usually physically self contained arrangement of supplies, equipment, and personnel to complete a service sequence; a flow cell enables visual management, simple flow, standard work, transparency, and tight connections.
A problem-solving tool that illustrates a process. It can show the “as is” process or “should be” process for comparison and should make waste evident.
A philosophy that rejects batch, lot or mass processing as wasteful. Product should move (flow) from operation to operation in the smallest increment, one piece being the ultimate. Product should be pulled from the preceding operation, as it is needed. Often referred to as “One Piece Flow”, only quality parts are allowed to move to the next operation.
Done to map the gap which exits between implied and specified customer requirements and existing process.
Gemba A Japanese term meaning "the place where the truth can be found." Others may call it "the value proposition." In quality management, gemba means the manufacturing floor and the idea is that if a problem occurs, the engineers must go there to understand the full impact of the problem, gathering data from all sources. Unlike focus groups and surveys, gemba visits are not scripted or bound by what we want to ask.
Device or means of automatic unload of the work piece from one operation or process, providing the proper state for the next work piece to be loaded. Automatic unloading and orientation for the next process is essential for a “Chaku-Chaku” line
Japanese term meaning to acknowledge your own mistake and to pledge improvement. Deep personal reflection
Production leveling process. This process attempts to minimize the impact of peaks and valleys in customer demand. It includes level production-volume and level production-variety.
Strategic Planning/Strategic Management methodology, developed by Dr. Yoji Akao. Also known as Policy Deployment. Align the goals of the Company(Strategy), with the plans of middle management (Tactics) and the work performed on the plant floor (Action).
Automation with a human touch or transferring human intelligence to a machine. This allows the machine to detect abnormalities or defects and stop the process when they are detected. Also known as autonomation.
Just in Time (JIT)
A planning system for manufacturing processes that optimizes availability of material inventories at the manufacturing site to only what, when and how much is necessary.
Japanese for continuous improvement. Based on the philosophy that what we do today should be better than yesterday and what we do tomorrow should be better than today, never resting or accepting status quo.
A visual trigger system to signal that material is needed. (Pull System)
Key Performance Indicators (KPI)
A method of tracking or monitoring the progress of high level operational metrics.
Lead Time The amount of time, defined by the supplier, that is required to meet a customer request or demand. (Note: lead time is not the same as cycle time).
A manufacturing philosophy that shortens the time between the customer order and the product build and shipment by eliminating sources of waste. It attacks waste within a plant or process; waste elimination results in cost reduction.
Equalizing cycle times (productive capacity, assuming 100% capacity utilization) for relatively small units of the manufacturing process, through proper assignment of workers and machines; ensures smooth production flow
Low Hanging Fruit
Those improvements and innovations that can be suggested and implemented when they become apparent.
Machine Cycle Time
The time it takes for an individual piece of equipment to complete its functions to produce a quality part independent of the operator’s unloading and loading time
Master Black Belt
A teacher and mentor of black belts. Provides support, project reviews and undertakes larger scale projects.
Things to measure to understand quality levels; metric means measurement.
Processes that are purposefully excluded from ongoing advanced manufacturing initiatives are often referred to as “monuments”.
MRP- Material Requirements Planning
A process that utilizes bill of material information, a master schedule, and current inventory information to calculate net requirements for materials
Japanese for waste
Associates at any level of the organisation that are diverse in skills and training. They provide the organization with flexibility and grow in value over time. Essential for achieving maximum efficiencies of J.I.T.
Japanese for unevenness.
Japanese for unreasonableness.
Smooth production flow, ideally one piece at a time, characterized by synchronization (balancing) of production processes and maximum utilization of available time, including overlapping of operations where practical
NVA - Non Value Added
Those process steps that take time, resources or space, but do not transform or shape the product or service toward that which is sold to a customer.
OEE - Overall Equipment Effectiveness
Framework for measuring productivity loss for a given manufacturing process. Three catagories of loss are tracked: Availability (Downtime) - Performance (Slow Cycles) - Quality (rejects).
An exact description of how to derive a value for a characteristic you are measuring. It includes a precise definition of the characteristic and how, specifically, data collectors are to measure the characteristic. Used to remove ambiguity and ensure all data collectors have the same understanding.
Operator Cycle Time
The total time it takes an operator to complete one cycle of all the standard work elements in his job.
Any area within a product, process, service or other system where a defect could be produced or where you fail to achieve the ideal product in the eyes of the customer.
A set of assumptions, concepts, values and practices that constitute a way of viewing reality for the community that shares them, especially in an intellectual discipline.
A vertical bar graph showing the bars in descending order of significance, ordered from left to right. Helps to focus on the vital few problems rather than the trivial many. An extension of the Pareto Principle suggests that the significant items in a given group normally constitute a relatively small portion of the items in the total group. Conversely, a majority of the items will be relatively minor in significance, (i.e. the 80/20 rule).
A never ending pursuit of the complete elimination of non-value adding waste so that all activities along a value stream create value; perfection challenges us to also create compelling quality (“defect free”) while also reducing cost (“lowest cost”).
PDCA - Plan Do Check Act
The PDCA cycle, sometimes referred to as the Deming cycle, is an important item for control in strategy deployment.
Product Development System
Point of Use
A technique that ensures people have exactly what they need to do their job--the right work instructions, parts, tools and equipment - where and when they need them.
Also Baka-Yoke, a Japanese expression meaning “common or simple, mistake proof”. A method of designing production or administrative processes which will, by their nature, prevent errors. This may involve designing fixtures, which will not accept an improperly loaded part. In the administrative area, having a credit memo be a different color than a debit memo. It requires that thought be put into the design of any system to anticipate what can go wrong and build in measures to prevent errors.
A one year plan, reflecting the long-term vision and the 3-5 year strategic planning objectives. A planning/implementation process that focuses on a few, major, long term, customer focused breakthrough objectives that are critical to a company’s long term success. This process links major objectives with specific support plans throughout the organization.
Illustrated description of how things get done, which enables participants to visualize an entire process and identify areas of strength and weaknesses. It helps reduce cycle time and defects while recognizing the value of individual contributions.
The individual(s) responsible for process design and performance. The process owner is accountable for sustaining the gain and identifying future improvement opportunities on the process.
Defined and specific project beginning and end points. The more specific the details (what's in-scope and what's out of scope), the less a project may experience "scope creep".
A system of cascading production and delivery instructions from downstream to upstream activities in which the upstream supplier until the downstream customer signals a need. The opposite of Push.
The previous process produces as much as it can without regard to the actual requirements of the next process and sends them to the next process whether there is an existing need or not.
The systems, organizations and tools that make it possible to plan, manufacture and deliver a quality product or service. This does not imply inspection or even traditional quality control. Rather, it builds quality into the entire process of bringing goods and services to the customer.
The time a product spends in a line awaiting the next design, order-processing or fabrication step.
RIE - Rapid Improvement Event
"A 2 to 5 day process utilizing a team based methodology to apply the lean tools for seeing
waste and making immediate improvement "
RCA - Root Cause Analysis
The ultimate reason for an event or condition. Using various tools and techniques to determine the true cause(s) of a problem; tools such as 5 Whys, Fishbone, 4M and A3 are used to drill down to the true cause of the problem as well.
Root Cause Analysis
A problem solving methodology that focuses on resolving the underlying problem instead of applying quick fixes that only treat immediate symptoms of the problem. A common approach is to ask why five times - each time moving a step closer to discovering the true underlying problem.
"Work required to change over a machine or process from one item or operation to the next item or operation; can be divided into two types:
1. Internal: set-up work that can be done only when the machine is not actively engaged in
2. External: set-up work that can be done concurrently with the machine or process performing production duties "
"Continually optimizing the number of workers in a work center to meet the type and volume of demand imposed on the work center; Requires that:
1. Workers are trained in multiple disciplines.
2. Work center layout, such as U-shaped or circular, that supports a variable number of workers performing the tasks in the layout.
3. The capability to vary the manufacturing process as appropriate to fit the demand profile"
SIPOC - Supplier-Input-Process-Output-Customer
A high-level process map used in identifying the five to ten processes that must be completed in order to ensure the project completion. In Project Management training, the five to seven packets of works are identified and must be completed in order to ensure project completion.
A statistical term used to refer to a process that generates a maximum defect probability of 3.4 parts per million (PPM) when the amount of process shifts and drifts are controlled over the long term to less than +1.5 standard deviations from the centered mean.
SMART - Goals
Goals that are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-Specific.
SMED - Single Minute Exchange of Dies
Method of increasing the amount of productive time available for a piece of machinery by minimizing the time needed to change from one model to another. This greatly increases the flexibility of the operation and allows it to respond more quickly to changes in demand. It also has the benefit of allowing an organization to greatly reduce the amount of inventory that it must carry because of improved response time, while maximizing return on investment
Standard Work is a tool that defines the interaction of people and their environment when processing a product or service. It details the motion of the operator and the sequence of action. It provides a routine for consistency of an operation and a basis for improvement. It details the best process we currently know and understand. Tomorrow it should be better, (continuous improvement), and the standard work should be revised to incorporate the improvement. There can be no improvement without a basis or standard. Standard Work has three central elements;
1 - TAKT time
2 - Standard Work Sequence, and
3 - Standard Work in Process.
Standard Work in Process
The minimum amount of material or a given product, which must be in process at any time to insure proper flow of the operation.
Standardization The system of documenting and updating procedures to make sure everyone knows clearly and simply what is expected of them. Essential for application of PDCA cycle.
The management team’s vision for where and how they will win on a sustainable long-term basis in terms of customer, product, channel, quality, delivery and cost.
A disciplined effort to produce fundamental decisions and actions that shape and guide what an organization is, what it does, and why it does it, with a focus on the future.
A one-year plan, reflecting the long-term vision and the 3-5 year strategic planning objectives. A planning/implementation process that focuses on a few, major, long term, customer focused breakthrough objectives that are critical to a company’s long term success. This process links major objectives with specific support plans throughout the organization.
The available production time divided by the rate of customer demand. Takt Time sets the pace of production to match the rate of customer demand and becomes the heartbeat of any lean system. Takt time usually is expressed in seconds.
The time required for a product to proceed from concept to launch, order to delivery or raw materials into the hands of the customer. This includes both processing and queue time.
TPM - Total Productive Maintenance
A series of methods, to ensure that every machine in a production process is always able to perform its required tasks so that production is never interrupted. Productive maintenance carried out by all employees. It is based on the principle that equipment improvement must involve everyone in the organization, from line operators to top management.
TPS - Toyota Production System
A manufacturing strategy developed by the Toyota Motor Corporation of Japan over a period of many years. TPS focuses on the complete elimination of waste from the manufacturing process.
A capability provided to a customer at the right time at an appropriate price, as defined in each case by the customer.
Any process or operation that shapes or transforms the product or service into a final form that the customer will purchase.
Value Added Analysis
With this activity, a process improvement team strips the process down to its essential elements. The team isolates the activities that in the eyes of the customer actually add or service. The remaining nonvalue-adding activities ("waste") are targeted value to the product or service. The remaining nonvalue-adding activities ("waste") are targeted for extinction.
All the activities (both value-added and non-value added) required within an organization to deliver a specific service; “everything that goes into” creating and delivering the “value” to the end-customer.
VSM - Value Stream Map
Articulates company vision and strategy through the higher level view of product flow, information flow and data analysis to determine gaps and waste, looking at the big picture.
A long-term plan of direction that is based on a careful assessment of the most important directions for the organization.
Systems that enable anyone to immediately assess the current status of an operation or given process at a glance, regardless of their knowledge of the process.
VOC - Voice of the Customer
Desires and requirements of the customer at all levels, translated into real terms for consideration in the development of new products, services and daily business conduct.
"Also known as Muda". Any process or operation that does not add value.
Water Spider / Mizusumashi
Someone who moves quickly and efficiently from place to place to collect and deliver material/supplies to the primary members of a flow cell; move as much of the non value added work away from the primary member as possible and ‘centralize’ it on the water spider.
WIP = Work In Progress
Inventory that has not reached finished state but has cost added to it through partial completion of the process.
The specific order in which an operator performs the manual steps of the process.
Japanese for “across everywhere”. Knowledge is shared and plant related activities and countermeasures may be communicated plant wide and with other branches of the company and its affiliates.