Lean tools are used when organizations require to have defect free product, service or result. 12 of the key techniques that help achieve this are as follows:
#1: Five Whys: This is an iterative questioning methodology to find the root cause of the defect.
#2: Five S: It refers to the five crucial steps that helps organize and maintain a productive workplace. It broadly expands to sort, streamline, shine, standardize and sustain.
#3: Poka Yoke: This Lean tool builds a preventive response within the system to check the user from making an error.
#4: Kanban: Developed at Toyota, Kanban is used to achieve JIT for higher levels of production. It is used to maintain the inventory levels. The key components used here are the Kanban cards that signal to reload a product, part or inventory.
#5: Cellular Manufacturing: Grouping together processes that lead to manufacturing of similar products, helps cut down the cycle time by a significant amount.
#6: Takt Time: Based on the available time and the demand of the customer, Takt finds the average time to execute the task.
#7: Total Productive Maintenance: TPM is a very useful Lean tool that increases production and boosts employee confidence by empowering them with accountability.
#8: Heijunka: This tactic levels the workload over time. It states, whatever the customer order pattern be, there should be a steady quantity of work done by the organization, to prevent unwanted delay, and to maintain a constant improvement.
#9: Continuous Flow: Reducing the batch size ensures a consistent pace for moving the piece from one process to the other.
#10: Standardized Work: Documenting the details of how and when the job would be done, guarantees a standard across all the value streams.
#11: SMED: Quick Changeover guarantees reduced set up time, thus leading to an increased customer satisfaction, and enhanced flexibility.
#12: Plan-Do-Check-Act: PDCA/PDSA are techniques that creates a constant improvement with every activity. Establishing a rule to perform individual tasks, safeguards the overall process.