(land, buildings, equipment) provide the physical capability to add
value and create products. The most common manifestation of
facility planning (or lack thereof) is the Plant Layout . An effective layout incorporates and enables the manufacturing strategy on which it is based. Lean strategy starts with workflow and
workflow is the result of process and layout. Mr. Lee has authored two books and many articles on Plant Layout
and Facility Planning. His approach is organized, practical and systematic.
Lean manufacturing is the term most commonly used to describe the Toyota Production System (TPS). In the above figure, we have the TPS house. At the base, we have operational stability, which means creating consistency in methods and tasks, equipment, workplace organization, and output of work. There are two pillars that we speak of as well. Just-In-Time means providing the next downstream customer with what they need when they need it and in the right quantity. Built in Quality or Quality at the Source, the second pillar, essentially means never knowingly passing defective product or information to the next downstream customer. These concepts, combined with respect for people and a culture of continuous improvement, lead to the best quality, lowest cost, and shortest-lead-time products and services.
The essential elements of Lean Manufacturing are described at our page " Principles of Lean Manufacturing ." They do not substantially differ from the techniques developed by Ohno, Shingo and the people at Toyota. The application in any specific factory does change. Just as many firms copied Ford techniques in slavish and unthinking ways, many firms copy Toyota's techniques in slavish and unthinking ways and with poor results. Our series of articles on implementation includes a " Mental Model " to assist the thinking process and guidance on strategy and planning.