Flow Practices of Lean Manufacturing

Flow is one of the basic principles of Lean Manufacturing. Flow practices are key to the application of the Flow principle.

Beginning Cellular Manufacturing

The first flow practice is Beginning Cellular Manufacturing. This includes basic cross skilling and quality in at the source. We look at the four components of process capabilities and methods to measure the process. The method include run charts, control charts, CpK, and precontrol. We discuss the utilization of machines and the right sizing of tools. We explore the concepts in and around the shape of the lines. We look at the issues of stopping the line and kickout and their relationship to flow.

Advanced Cellular Manufacturing

The second flow practice is Advanced Cellular Manufacturing. We discuss the impact and methods of autonomation (Jidoka) and explore ways to do it. We look at load-load (Chaku-Chaku) and discuss when it is appropriate. We talk about the takt time and how to balance the work to takt time, especially when takt time is constantly changing. We teach the ideas of level/mixed production and explain when and why it is valuable. We look at the issues under cycle time control and what it means to Lean Manufacturing. We look at the multi-machine working and multi-process handling cases and understand their applications. We look at the implications of extensive job rotation and pooling.

Conveyors and Transportation

The third flow practice is Conveyors and Transportation. One of the key ideas in Lean Manufacturing seems to indicate that we should get rid of all transportation and storage. We will discuss storage caused from three sources: unbalanced flow (two directions of correction), buffer between processes (six causes), and safety stock (four causes). We will look at the basic types of conveyors and when they can be appropriate. We will discuss the three different cases of transportation and what they mean to the process.

At ViewPoint & Understanding Enhancement we work closely with you to determine where you are today in applying these practices. We also help you define your best path forward, given your current circumstances.

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