This post specifically focuses on the various tools used in Lean Supply chain management.
Tools for Lean SCM employs the usage of various tool. In this blog post, we have discussed in detail 10 such tools for lean SCM. The lean approach, in contrast to many other so-called “flavors of the month,” has been around for a very long time. Even after being preached and implemented all over the world for the past three decades, the lean movement is still going strong. In the modern world of business management, the lean method is still the one that has the most adherents all over the world. More than 70 percent of organizations have, to some degree or another, implemented lean practices.
One of the reasons why lean is used so extensively and is still the most advantageous method is that it has a set of practical tools that can be readily applied in almost any business circumstance. This is one of the reasons why lean continues to be the most popular method.
These 10 Tools for Lean SCM, draws inspiration from the various lean tools used by TPS These tools’ primary functions are to visualize the flow of materials throughout the production lines and supply chains, as well as to identify the locations of waste products. They help to identify the bottleneck and prioritize the corrective actions, as well as facilitate discussion and communication, which is facilitated by them, and they also help to pull together the principles of lean thinking.
There are a wide variety of commonly employed tools that can offer direct assistance to lean supply chain management. The vast majority of the data presented in the tools was taken from Peter Hines and David Taylor’s article titled “Going Lean” (2000).
Tools for Lean SCM 1: Value Stream Mapping
The figure illustrates how the value stream mapping tool can be used to map out the value-adding and wasteful processes that occur from the supplier to the customer. These processes include logistics, purchasing, order fulfillment, and production.
Tools for Lean SCM 2: Time-Based Process Mapping
As can be seen in Figure, the time-based process mapping tool is essentially a “walk-through” tool that can identify and map out the activity time (which is supposed to be value adding) and waste time (which is non-value adding) in each step that the material has gone through.
Tools for Lean SCM 3: Process Activities Mapping
The tool for process activity mapping creates a map that depicts the four distinct activities that the materials have to go through, which are operation, transport, inspection, and storage. Each activity type has a key associated with it, which helps with visualization. In addition to this, a plan flow diagram can be included to improve the flow.
Tools for Lean SCM 4: Supply Chain Response Matrix
The inventory and lead times that must be maintained by a supply chain in order to provide a certain level of customer service are factored into an evaluation using a supply chain response matrix. It helps identify large chunks of time and inventory and gives managers the ability to evaluate whether or not there is a requirement to keep the inventory.
Tools for Lean SCM 5: Logistics Pipeline Map
The supply chain response matrix is complemented by the logistics pipeline map. On the horizontal axis, it displays the accumulated amount of process time, and on the vertical axis, it displays the levels of inventory. This reveals the precise locations within each operation where time and inventory are accumulated (see figure).
Tools for Lean SCM 6: Value Adding Time Profile
The value-adding time profile is a graph that shows the accumulation of value-adding costs as well as costs that do not add value against the passage of time. It is a very helpful instrument for analyzing the compression of time as well as mapping out the areas in which money is being wasted. It is not very different from Value Stream Mapping
Tools for Lean SCM 7: Time profile for value addition
The process of quality filter mapping is a tool that can be used to locate quality issues that may exist in the order fulfillment process or in the supply chain as a whole. The map illustrates the locations in the value stream that are most likely to have three distinct types of quality defects.
Tools for Lean SCM 8: Production variety funnel
A visual mapping technique known as the production variety funnel plots the number of product varieties present at each stage of the manufacturing process. This method is used to determine the point at which a generic product begins to cater to the needs of a specific customer in either an increasing or complete manner
Tools for Lean SCM 9: Quality filter mapping
Tools for Lean SCM 10: Demand amplification mapping
Demand amplification mapping is a graph that plots quantity against time and displays the batch sizes of a product at various stages of the production process. This could be planned out with an organization or along the supply chain. Additionally, it can be used to display the quantity of inventory that is held at each stage of the supply chain.
Samrat is a Delhi-based MBA from the Indian Institute of Management. He is a Strategy, AI, and Marketing Enthusiast and passionately writes about core and emerging topics in Management studies. Reach out to his LinkedIn for a discussion or follow his Quora Page