Monday, September 27, 2010
Concept Mapping Toyota’s 8-Step Lean Manufacturing Methodology
The forth step is to find the source. What causes the problem? It is important to review the process being investigated and the current controls. Questions that can be asked are ‘What has changed?’ or ‘What anticipated event did not occur?’ If the answer is not clear, then a systemic issue exists and additional physical analysis is necessary to determine root cause. Discovery of the root cause must be accomplished to progress to any other steps.
Now we get to the problem resolution stage. In step 5 we implement corrective actions, the team defines and implements the best corrective action, and ongoing controls are implemented to make sure that the root cause has been eliminated. Once changes have been put into production, it is important to monitor the long-term effects that have been put in place. And of course, all changes implemented must be documented—the appropriate control plan, process flow documentation, and appropriate work instructions.
In step 6, it is necessary to verify that the selected corrective actions will resolve the problem and that the changes will not cause any undesirable side effects to occur.
Step 7 is the evaluation of the modified process and its results. This is a good time to look at the issue and the identified solution in its entirety. What can be learned from this important step that will have potentially a universal impact on how your business is conducted?
The final step is to standardize successful processes to build quality in to the product and to resolve any future shortcomings in the manufacturing process. Quality has such a demonstrable impact on customer buying patterns today that methodologies such as Toyota’s 8-step problem solving have been widely adopted many manufacturing organizations and the United States Air Force.
Click here to download a template for the 8-step problem solving solution.