Chap015 - Chapter 15 - Lean Operations CHAPTER 15: LEAN...

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Unformatted text preview: Chapter 15 - Lean Operations CHAPTER 15: LEAN OPERATIONS Teaching Notes JIT seems to be one of the most popular subjects for the students. Some are a bit skeptical at first, but most are fascinated by this Japanese approach to repetitive production. It has been said by some Japanese that the system has its roots in Henry Fords assembly line. In fact, some interesting parallels and comparisons can be made between JIT systems and production lines. Perhaps the most challenging aspect of presenting JIT is where to start; that is, which elements to present first, and then, which order to present to remaining elements. It is important that students understand the difference between romantic JIT and pragmatic JIT because many times students can fall into the same trap that the senior management has fallen into. Students may also see JIT as a quick fix to many problems without realizing that there are no quick and easy solutions to these problems. It needs to be stressed to the students that it may take years to perfect a JIT system by implementing various techniques related to machine changeovers, layout design, product simplification, quality training and preventive maintenance. Reading: The Nuts and Bolts of Japans Factories This article provides a classic description of a JIT system, using the acknowledged originator, Toyota. Key points in the reading are: 1. The system has minimal inventories. 2. Fresh parts are delivered as needed, and in small batches. 3. Products are assembled in small batches according to a sales plan. 4. Toyota engineers level production among lines to coordinate output without building inventories. 5. There are substantial benefits to this system, such as: a. Toyota doesnt need space for inventory, people to handle and control inventory, or borrowed money to finance it. b. Workers become fast at repair and changeovers. c. Workers are trained to be able to perform more than one job, providing added flexibility to the system. 6. There is a close working relationship between Toyota and its suppliers, most of whom are located within a short distance of the factory. Possible discussion questions are: a. Describe the Toyota production system. b. What are some of the main benefits of this system? 15-1 Chapter 15 - Lean Operations c. What difficulties might western companies face in trying to adopt this system? (Possible answers include resistance from workers, resistance from unions, resistance from managers, resistance from suppliers, cutting back inventories too soon before the system can handle them, proceeding without a clear understanding of the potential risks, anticipating quick results, and then being disappointed when they dont materialize.) 15-2 Chapter 15 - Lean Operations Reading: Developing the JIT Philosophy Successful JIT requires two things: 1. Involvement of all levels of management....
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Chap015 - Chapter 15 - Lean Operations CHAPTER 15: LEAN...

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