Seven Wastes – Waiting

Today’s Guest Blog Author:
Kris Chapman is the Vision Lean Manager at Trilogiq USA. Kris has 15 years experience in helping manufacturing facilities implement Lean Manufacturing principles.

Waiting-300x300A company’s lead time can be a competitive advantage in many industries, so when a process or product has to wait on something or someone a sale or delivery could be missed, affecting the bottom line.

When conducting a walk to spot waiting wastes, do you see any of the following situations?

  • Team members standing idle.
  • Orders in WIP waiting on components to be available.
  • Fork truck or a material handler waiting for product to be completed.
  • Excessive WIP within a process.

If you can answer yes to any of the four situations above, you have a waste; there is imbalance in your process and your deliveries are being delayed.

To visualize waiting muda, a good process map will show people or machine waiting or delays throughout the value stream. The goal is to have your process balanced and have your manpower and material flow moving in a synchronized motion to complete the product. The goal is to have one piece flow with small lot sizes that are delivered frequently and will help you achieve a lead time reduction and reduce finished goods.

A common waiting waste occurs because of bottlenecks in a process. For example, team members can be waiting on product while others are stocking parts. To solve this waste, use a time observation worksheet to list out each step of the process and compare it to the standard work instructions. This will generally show that the process isn’t balanced. Adding new material presentation solutions and job duties will often balance and eliminate process steps, yielding a 30% reduction in cycle time.

Next up is the most common waste there is, can you guess what it is?

Categories:Waste Reduction