Lean Manufacturing is all about eliminating waste and unnecessary overheads across the production system to add value to the final deliverable that reaches the customer, or as some espouse, increase the company’s profits. Either way, the goal is typically achieved by implementing continuous improvement initiatives across all stages of the production process, usually in a phased manner.
While the goals of lean implementation are pretty much the same across different manufacturers, the strategies adopted to achieve the goal are bound to differ, and Lean Manufacturing consultants are the best people to strategize the implementation. Manufacturing facilities are typically plagued by bottlenecks that directly impact the final deliverable. Lack of quality, delays in order fulfilments, idle resources, over or under stocked inventories and several other problems can be suitably address by going lean.
How Can Lean Manufacturing Consultants Help?
Lean implementations though demand the buy-in and full participation of the entire workforce, need to be helmed by an experienced Lean Manufacturing consultant for the effort to succeed. It is important to note that all systems can be expected to be prepared for a lean implementation. In such cases Consultants are also responsible to create the necessary awareness and inclination, chart out detail plans and schedules, and define reasonably timed goals to kick start the process.
Right from assessing existing systems based on historical data and identifying key areas of improvement, to setting performance standards, guiding and motivating employees, following up on the results and suggesting course corrections, lean manufacturing consultants are in charge of the entire lean implementation process, including budgeting and cost control. It is therefore important for the consultant to not only be an expert in lean principles and industry specific challenges but also in applying them to real world situations.
While lean tools are aplenty and can be applied to resolve a range of production issues, applying the right lean concept as deemed fit to address a specific issue is a key for successful implementation. For example lean techniques applicable to improve the response time of a automobile manufacturing unit may not be directly applied to a Pharmaceutical or food processing facility. Adapting a particular technique or concept to fit the situation at hand is equally important, and this is where the industry and lean experience of the consultant makes all the difference.
Lean Manufacturing Consultants in fact play a key role in facilitating this challenging transformation!