STANDARDIZATION AS A TOOL FOR PROCESS IMPROVEMENT
- 1 Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Technical University-Plovdiv branch, Bulgaria
- 2 Faculty of Economics, University of Food Technology, Plovdiv, Bulgaria
In this article the authors examine the nature of standardized work and its place in TPS (Toyota production system). Standardized work is one of the most powerful but least used lean tools. By documenting the current best practice, standardized work forms the baseline for kaizen or continuous improvement. As the standard is improved, the new standard becomes the baseline for further improvements, and so on. Improving standardized work is a never-ending process. Establishing standardized work relies on collecting and recording data on a few forms. These forms are used by engineers and front-line supervisors to design the process and by operators to make improvements in their own jobs. In this workshop, you’ll learn how to use these forms and why it will be difficult to make your lean implementations "stick" without standardized work. The benefits of standardized work include documentation of the current process for all shifts, reductions in variability, easier training of new operators, reductions in injuries and strain, and a baseline for improvement activities. The main emphasis placed on identifying the three elements of standardized work, monitoring of any process to detect potential improvements and milestones in process improvement. Based on research conducted in Bulgarian industrial enterprises are given the attitudes of managers to use this tool to improve processes.