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Ani helped me at PBK at a point we were growing extremely rapidly- which in[…]

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Where To Begin Your Lean Six Sigma Journey?

Create a vision of why it’s time to start a new operational direction for the future of the business. It’s an opportunity for senior leaders to stand in front of each facility’s workforce, paint the picture of the need for change, and communicate the path intended for everyone’s involvement.

You’ll want to achieve short-term gains early in the process by using a tools training expert to develop a training plan for things like Pareto analysis, 5S, Value Stream Mapping, Kaizen, etc.


  1. Transportation
  2. Motion
  3. Waiting
  4. Overproduction
  5. Overprocessing
  6. Defects
  7. Skills

1. Transportation: The movement of materials from one location to another, i.e., transportation, is one of the biggest lean manufacturing waste areas. Transportation waste adversely affects several other wastes—including motion and waiting—resulting in high overhead costs, unnecessary expenditures, and irregular production flow. Some of the examples of Transportation waste in lean manufacturing include:

  • Poor coordination amongst the logistics team.
  • Moving parts and materials between distant facilities
  • Using a faraway supplier instead of local providers

2. Inventory:  Since inventory is considered an asset, it sometimes gets tough to think of it as Waste. However, having excess/overstocking products can also be a waste if it gets damaged and the storage cost increases. Some of the examples of Inventory waste in lean manufacturing include:

  • Unused machinery and equipment.
  • Overstocking of materials that are not needed at the moment.
  • Storage of expired products.

3. Motion:  Motion waste is the unnecessary movement of people, machinery, or other resources. Task allocation should be redesigned to reduce such Waste and enhance personnel’s work alongside their health and safety levels. Some of the examples of Motion waste in lean manufacturing include:

  • Poorly located supplies and other necessary equipment.
  • Excess of Machine’s wear and tear.
  • Unnecessary steps that are included in processes.

4. Waiting:

Waiting is another easily identifiable waste. Waiting occurs whenever processes, people, or goods are not moving through the system, resulting in lost time that ultimately affects the end line.

Some of the examples of Waiting Waste in lean manufacturing includes:

  • Idle machinery or unexpected downtime.
  • Delays caused by humans, for example, delays from suppliers’ end.
  • Pausing activity while an automated machine finishes its task.
  • Holding production until other hurdles in the step ahead get resolved.

5. Over-processing: 

Over-processing also referred to as Extra processing, is a kind of Waste where excessive features and steps are added. Over-processing creates complexity which leads to wasted time, money, and workforce.

Some of the examples of Over-processing Waste in lean manufacturing include: 

  • Vague quality standards and specifications.
  • Installing/ adding features without testing it out.
  • Offering more options than the customer needs.

6. Overproduction: 

Overproduction happens when products are made before their demand is generated. It leads to unnecessary spending, which further ties up with other wastes like inventory and transportation. Usually, this occurs when organizations produce goods under the pretense of, Just in case.

Some of the examples of overproduction waste in lean manufacturing include: 

  • Misinformation and Wrong judgment of product demands
  • A warehouse filled with idle inventory.
  • Overstaffed warehouses.


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