Achieving level production is a key objective of a Lean production system. Level production occurs when each process step works in unison at a constant rate of production equal to rate of customer demand or takt time. But how do you achieve level production? In our latest Lean Minute video TXM Senior Consultant, Greg Boek provides five simple steps to get you there.
Watch Greg Boek explain the link between Level Production and a Visual Workplace
Watch Tim McLean explain the Manufacturing Agility Process
Read the Video Transcript
Minimising investment in resources and providing your employees with an even pace of work that doesn’t overburden them will improve your productivity.
Hi, I’m Greg Boek, Welcome to this TXM Lean minute.
There are many reasons why sales and work entering your business vary every day in quantity and type. In this video we’ll discuss the process of Heijunka or Levelling and how to smooth the quantity and type of work that enters your workplace.
Do you find there are days when your workforce doesn’t have enough to do, and others where you feel they will never get through it, but somehow they do.
Everyone breathes a sigh of relief and go home completely worn out. This unevenness in work over burdens your team and tires them out, and needing to cope with the peak level of work in a short period time means that you need more equipment, or need that piece of equipment that runs at a higher rate which comes with a hefty price tag.
I’ll now take you through the steps to implement Heijunka in your work flow that will allow you to even the pace of work entering your factory or office.
- Understand your work level history by mix and type over a period. 12 months or even 2 years is ideal as it allows you to
see any seasonal impact, but any period you can access is OK to start.
- Look forward and adjust for any known changes that will occur. These could be sales promotions, launching new products etc.
- Pick a level rate of work that can be applied over a period of time where implementing some strategic controlled inventory, or adjusting of lead time could smooth the rate of work.
- Work out the Takt time, or pace or work that your workplace needs to run at to achieve this level.
- Balance your workplace manpower and equipment and deliver information to carry out the work at this rate. Heijunka as a base built on with other lean tools will bring significant improvements in productivity, reductions in inventory, freeing up of floorspace and freeing up planners time to carry out higher level activities.
Call us at TXM to help you to implement Heijunka into your business.