Just-in-time (JIT)

Just-in-time (JIT) - Just-in-time(JIT Introduction...

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Just-in-time (JIT) Introduction Just-in-time (JIT) is easy to grasp conceptually, everything happens just-in-time. For example consider my journey to work this morning, I could have left my house, just-in- time to catch a bus to the train station, just-in-time to catch the train, just-in-time to arrive at my office, just-in-time to pick up my lecture notes, just-in-time to walk into this lecture theatre to start the lecture. Conceptually there is no problem about this, however achieving it in practice is likely to be difficult! So too in a manufacturing operation component parts could conceptually arrive just-in- time to be picked up by a worker and used. So we would at a stroke eliminate any inventory of parts, they would simply arrive just-in-time ! Similarly we could produce finished goods just-in-time to be handed to a customer who wants them. So, at a conceptual extreme, JIT has no need for inventory or stock, either of raw materials or work in progress or finished goods. Obviously any sensible person will appreciate that achieving the conceptual extreme outlined above might well be difficult, or impossible, or extremely expensive, in real-life. However that extreme does illustrate that, perhaps, we could move an existing system towards a system with more of a JIT element than it currently contains. For example, consider a manufacturing process - whilst we might not be able to have a JIT process in terms of handing finished goods to customers, so we would still need some inventory of finished goods, perhaps it might be possible to arrange raw material deliveries so that, for example, materials needed for one day's production arrive at the start of the day and are consumed during the day - effectively reducing/eliminating raw material inventory. Adopting a JIT system is also sometimes referred to as adopting a lean production system . More about JIT can be found here , here , here and here . History JIT originated in Japan. Its introduction as a recognised technique/philosophy/way of working is generally associated with the Toyota motor company, JIT being initially known as the "Toyota Production System". Note the emphasis here - JIT is very much a mindset/way of looking at a production system that is distinctly different from what (traditionally) had been done previous to its conception. Within Toyota Taiichi Ohno is most commonly credited as the father/originator of this way of working. The beginnings of this production system are rooted in the historical situation that Toyota faced. After the Second World War the president of Toyota said "Catch up with America in three years, otherwise the automobile industry of Japan will not survive". At that time one American worker produced approximately nine times as much as a Japanese worker. Taiichi Ohno examined the American industry and found
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that American manufacturers made great use of economic order quantities - the traditional idea that it is best to make a "lot" or "batch" of an item (such as a particular
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Just-in-time (JIT) - Just-in-time(JIT Introduction...

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