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Updating Lean for the Manufacturing 4.0 Era

With the current intense focus on IoT, digital transformation, and real-time data leading to transformative change, it sometimes seems as if manufacturers have moved on from more traditional and continuous approaches to operational improvement—such as lea…
With the current intense focus on IoT, digital transformation, and real-time data leading to transformative change, it sometimes seems as if manufacturers have moved on from more … https://www.gilcommunity.com/blog/updating-lean-manufacturing-40-era/

Why Is it So Hard to Transplant Lean in Low-Cost Countries?

After rushing to offshore production in pursuit of lower-cost labor, many manufacturers have spent the past few years rethinking that decision. They’ve learned that, while offshoring production bound for core markets to lower-cost countries can bring chea…
After rushing to offshore production in pursuit of lower-cost labor, many manufacturers have spent the past few years rethinking that decision. They’ve learned that, while offshor… https://www.gilcommunity.com/blog/why-it-so-hard-transplant-lean-low-cost-countries/

What's Next: Beyond Manufacturing 4.0

Ted Duclos outlines a biologically inspired vision of sustainability--and manufacturing--at the ML Summit 2015.
Popular Discussions Ted Duclos, President of Freudenberg-NOK, delivered an interesting vision of what is, and what may be to come, at the Manufacturing Leadership Summit. And an… https://www.gilcommunity.com/discussion/whats-next-beyond-manufacturing-40/

Which is Best: Lean, Six Sigma, or TOC? Why Not Combine All Three?

Many manufacturers complain that they struggle to sustain momentum behind continuous improvement initiatives that use Lean and Six Sigma methodologies. Although these methods are proven and well-understood, many organizations find they aren’t systematical…
Popular Discussions Many manufacturers complain that they struggle to sustain momentum behind continuous improvement initiatives that use Lean and Six Sigma methodologies. Altho… https://www.gilcommunity.com/discussion/which-best-lean-six-sigma-or-toc-why-not-combine-all-three/

Are We Expecting Too Little from Lean?

Most manufacturers’ lean initiatives lack an overall design or strategy and, therefore, end up focusing on isolated, incremental operational improvement projects that are difficult to sustain and take years to produce significant results. Instead, the ult…
Popular Discussions Most manufacturers’ lean initiatives lack an overall design or strategy and, therefore, end up focusing on isolated, incremental operational improvemen… https://www.gilcommunity.com/discussion/are-we-expecting-too-little-lean/

China Faces a New Set of Manufacturing Challenges

One of the interesting things about business evolution these days is how short certain cycles seem to be getting. Analysts rooted in silicon would say it all stems from the microprocessor and Moore’s Law. Innovation seems to confer increasingly temporary …
One of the interesting things about business evolution these days is how short certain cycles seem to be getting. Analysts rooted in silicon would say it all stems from the microp… https://www.gilcommunity.com/blog/china-faces-new-set-manufacturing-challenges/

Has Most Operational Improvement Low-Hanging Fruit Already Been Plucked?

Having spent the past few years intensively pursuing operational efficiencies through philosophies such as Lean, how close are manufacturers today to realizing most of the available cost savings? According to a recently-concluded survey by Oxford Economic…
Popular Discussions Having spent the past few years intensively pursuing operational efficiencies through philosophies such as Lean, how close are manufacturers today to realizi… https://www.gilcommunity.com/discussion/has-most-operational-improvement-low-hanging-fruit-already-been-plucked/

The Key to Transformational Improvement: Worker Engagement

Here’s one of the inconvenient truths about continuous improvement initiatives such as Lean manufacturing and Six Sigma: Many companies find that, over time, these programs lose momentum and generate diminishing returns.
Here’s one of the inconvenient truths about continuous improvement initiatives such as Lean manufacturing and Six Sigma: Many companies find that, over time, these programs … https://www.gilcommunity.com/blog/key-transformational-improvement-worker-engagement/

A Look at What Moved Us in 2012

Manufacturers have much on their minds as they enter 2013: staying off cliffs, forecasting demand in a mercurial economy, hiring employees to fill what everyone hopes will be a landslide of orders. We at Manufacturing Executive sit at an interesting nexus…
Manufacturers have much on their minds as they enter 2013: staying off cliffs, forecasting demand in a mercurial economy, hiring employees to fill what everyone hopes will be a la… https://www.gilcommunity.com/blog/look-what-moved-us-2012/

Lean To Green: Manufacturing’s Biggest Innovation Opportunity?

Still think sustainability doesn’t pay? Try telling that to Robert McDonald, chairman, president, and CEO of Procter & Gamble. In P&G’s latest annual Sustainability Report - released last month, McDonald reveals that his company has saved nearly $1 billi…
Still think sustainability doesn’t pay? Try telling that to Robert McDonald, chairman, president, and CEO of Procter & Gamble. In P&G’s latest annual S… https://www.gilcommunity.com/blog/lean-green-manufacturings-biggest-innovation-opportunity/

Employee Performance Management at Odds with Lean?

Although manufacturers continue to invest in lean transformation, many have not yet aligned their employee performance management systems and standards with the goals and outcomes of their lean initiatives.
Although manufacturers continue to invest in lean transformation, many have not yet aligned their employee performance management systems and standards with the goals and outcomes… https://www.gilcommunity.com/discussion/employee-performance-management-odds-lean/

Six Sigma in Decline?

Recently I came across an interesting blog by an engineering manager and Six Sigma black belt who suggested that, for a variety of reasons, interest in Six Sigma continuous improvement methods among manufacturing companies is waning.
Recently I came across an interesting blog by an engineering manager and Six Sigma black belt who suggested that, for a variety of reasons, interest in Six Sigma continuous improv… https://www.gilcommunity.com/discussion/six-sigma-decline/

Is Kanban Replenishment Always the Right Answer?

Current common wisdom has it that lean-based replenishment techniques based on Kanban systems are always preferable to Min/Max replenishment approaches traditionally supported by ERP/MRP systems. Min/Max is said to favor larger, less frequent orders and h…
Current common wisdom has it that lean-based replenishment techniques based on Kanban systems are always preferrable to Min/Max replenishment approaches traditionally supported by… https://www.gilcommunity.com/discussion/kanban-replenishment-always-right-answer/

Lean Inventories Will Make You Pay

Over the years, I've been a proponent of many tenets of lean manufacturing. But there's one lean principle I just don't buy: lean inventories. Carrying inventory is the cost of doing business, I believe. A business spends working capital on stock so that …
Over the years, I've been a proponent of many tenets of lean manufacturing. But there's one lean principle I just don't buy: lean inventories. Carrying inventory is the cost of do… https://www.gilcommunity.com/discussion/lean-inventories-will-make-you-pay/

Should Lead Time Improvement Be Your Primary Goal?

As more manufacturers shift to business models based on customized, build-to-order products, they should prioritize lead time improvement over cost-base and lean optimizations. That's the argument made by University of Wisconsin-Madison Professor Emeritus…
As more manufacturers shift to business models based on customized, build-to-order products, they should prioritize lead time improvement over cost-base and lean optimizations. Th… https://www.gilcommunity.com/discussion/should-lead-time-improvement-be-your-primary-goal/

The Global View: Don't Judge Me by My Dirt Floors

In the 1980s, on one of my first trips to Asia as an engineer, I was in Japan visiting some of the plants that make Seiko watch components. Part of my job was to help transfer precision watch manufacturing equipment and adapt it to new markets oriented to…
In the 1980s, on one of my first trips to Asia as an engineer, I was in Japan visiting some of the plants that make Seiko watch components. Part of my job was to help transfer pre… https://www.gilcommunity.com/blog/global-view-dont-judge-me-my-dirt-floors/

When Lean Cuts Too Deep

Do manufacturers pursuing lean and other continuous improvement programs run the risk of cutting too deep, of removing not just fat, but also the muscle and bone needed for a healthy organization? The answer is yes if you believe cereal and snack food mak…
Do manufacturers pursuing lean and other continuous improvement programs run the risk of cutting too deep, of removing not just fat, but also the muscle and bone needed for a heal… https://www.gilcommunity.com/discussion/when-lean-cuts-too-deep/

Decoupling Supply and Demand

A pure build-to-stock production model means that the customer expects immediate shipment from inventory when the order is received and processed. Make-to-order is when the customer is willing to wait through the full manufacturing cycle before the produc…
A pure build-to-stock production model means that the customer expects immediate shipment from inventory when the order is received and processed. Make-to-order is when the custom… https://www.gilcommunity.com/blog/decoupling-supply-and-demand/

Report: Lean Comes up Short on Reducing Costs

Lean, Six Sigma and other continuous improvement programs are failing to delivery significant, sustained cost reductions to manufacturers, a study recently published by consulting firm AlixPartners LLC contends.
Related Articles Article 1 Article 2 Article 3 Stay in Touch               Not a Council Member? Click HERE to find out more about the Manufacturing Leadership … https://www.gilcommunity.com/discussion/report-lean-comes-short-reducing-costs/

Lean: Is It All or Nothing?

I've noticed that many advocates of lean transformation insist that organizations must faithfully abide by all lean doctrines and implement lean tools across the manufacturing enterprise. Anything less, say these advocates, amounts to an ineffective half …
Related Articles Article 1 Article 2 Article 3 Stay in Touch               Not a Council Member? Click HERE to find out more about the Manufacturing Leadership … https://www.gilcommunity.com/discussion/lean-it-all-or-nothing/

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Are We Expecting Too Little from Lean?  in
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