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Workplace implementation of Lean thinking

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LEAN Australia, in collaboration with Manufacturing Learning Australia , has developed a model for practical workplace implementation of Lean that is demonstrating significant positive outcomes for organisations.

The model integrates 5S processes, TPM, Quick change over, TQM, and visual controls with workplace learning and assessment principles, competitive manufacturing and Lean thinking.

Supervisors and operators are mentored through on-the-job implementation which is measured against real world performance benchmarks.

The process supports Culture Change, Self Directed Teams, Improvement Idea Generation and Kaizen Blitz's and ensures that Lean principles and processes are integrated into every day thinking and work practice.

Lean principles and competitive manufacturing are able to provide significant improvements for Australian organisations if applied to entire processes and supported by highly skilled supervisors and operators. Simply focusing on one part of the puzzle will not deliver expected results.

The organisation needs to understand and commit to Lean and competitive manufacturing principles and processes. Maximum effectiveness is achieved when competitive manufacturing becomes "the way we do things around here".

Workplace supervisors and operators have a significant influence on the success or otherwise of Lean and competitive manufacturing initiatives.

For the organisation, a relentless focus on waste is required - with overproduction, non-value-adding processes, excess inventory, defective products, and under-utilised people often providing key improvement opportunities.

For supervisors and operators, a sharp focus on how well equipment operates and identification of opportunities for improvement is required. A change of culture is essential for many of our traditional supervisors and operators as well as management.

Lean Australia and Manufacturing Learning Australia are hosting a series of seminars and workshops which will assist companies to tap into lean thinking and to make informed judgements about whether and how to implement Lean.

The Lean Thinking Series runs between July and September 2005 and places are limited. See www.mlaust.com or www. leanaust.com for more information and to register.

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