for the customer. The journey of continuous process
improvement begins and progresses by learning how to economically
produce smaller and smaller lot sizes. How do we do this?
The answer is, bit by bit. For example: if we have a
process which requires a lot size of 200 and it is working well and
it is economical, then try a lot size of 190. We will probably find
that everything still works well and the process is still
economical. So, what will it be like at 180, or 170, or 160? At some
point, as we gradually reduce the lot
size, we will expose a problem—something, some
constraint, that will
prevent us from making additional reductions.
Now we must find a way to solve the problem. The use
of the seven
basic total quality problem-solving tools will help
us to determine the
cause of the problem and to implement a permanent solution.
flowcharts —Define the boundaries of the process
checksheets—Detect patterns based on sample data.
Pareto chart—Determine which problem to solve and in
cause/effect diagram—Identify possible causes of a
run/control charts—Display trends over time.
histogram—Display distribution of data by category.
scatter diagram—To determine if two variables are
When the problem is eliminated, the process will
again be workingeconomically
and we can continue to gradually reduce the lot sizes,
exposing and eliminating
subsequent problems. This will drive us towards being able to
economically produce exactly what it is the customer wants
and away from making everything in batches.
Position, where practical, kanbans so that the
supplier can see his
material being pulled by the customer.
It is usually better for the customer to pull than
for the supplier to
Locate kanbans so that it is easy for the customer to
pull the oldest
Generally speaking, a "natural" kanban will be the
pallet, tray, supplier package, or container.
Process kanbans on a first-come, first-served basis
or according to a periodic schedule.
Have only active material at the work stations.
"Everything has a
place and is in its place" should become a natural way of life.
Two of the three key rules governing the use of kanban systems are
Never produce, or move material, without an empty
Never, ever pass on a known defect.
The first rule takes dead aim at the number one
overproduction. The second rule leads directly into real total
quality management of daily operations. In addition to the two rules
above, kanban has a third rule:
Eliminate a kanban from the system periodically.
The first rule forces the inventory down—but that is
not its primary
objective, which is to expose those constraints in
the process that have
forced the building of inventory in the first place. The third rule
reveals kanban's true role as
the engine of continuous process improvement—similar
to the role of material requirements planning as the engine of MRP
TEN-STEP PROVEN METHODOLOGY TO
SAFELY, QUICKLY, AND INEXPENSIVELY
IMPLEMENT KANBAN REPLENISHMENT
By following the 10 steps listed below, you can reasonably expect to
implement kanban replenishment in a small pilot area
of your plant in
120 days and be able to see tangible, bottom-line
To Be Continued