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How to implement lean manufacturing

Manufacturing business owners are always looking for ways to improve the cost effectiveness of their business. However, the complex nature of manufacturing can make this task much more difficult then in other types of businesses. Despite this complexity manufacturing business owners need to be aware of what the costs are in their business and make sure that they are keeping them under control. Lean manufacturing can help any manufacturing business owner to do just that. However, before lean manufacturing can begin working inside your business it will need to be implemented. How well you work through these steps and implement the process will have a direct effect on how successful lean manufacturing will be for your business. Here is what you need to know about how to implement lean manufacturing-

- Do an assessment-The first step that will be needed for lean manufacturing implementation is to carefully assess every part of your manufacturing business. You will need to know exactly what your manufacturing business' strengths and weaknesses are. When you do this you will be much more able to see where lean manufacturing will benefit your company the most. This will also help you to focus your efforts on the parts of your business that need lean manufacturing the most.
- Use tracking tools-Another important step that will need to be completed before lean manufacturing can be fully implemented is finding the right tracking tools. You will need to have a process in place that will help you to see how lean manufacturing is working for you and your business. This will also help you to be more consistent with your results. Keep in mind that you don't need to do all of the tracking yourself. Many times manufacturing business owners will assign a team within each department who is responsible for tracking and charting the results of their lean manufacturing procedures.
- Start out small-Often times manufacturing business owners will be overwhelmed with the thought of all the changes that will need to be made for lean manufacturing. It is important to know that you can start out small. In fact lean manufacturing experts stress that you should not implement to many changes at once. Instead focus on setting goals that can be broken down into short and long term goals. This will help you and your employees to see what effect lean manufacturing is having on your manufacturing business.
- Train your employees-If you are going to be successful at implementing lean manufacturing you will need to have a training program in place for your employees. You will need to get your employees fully behind the lean manufacturing program if you are going to be successful at using it within your company. Your lean manufacturing program will need to be able to show your employees just what their roles will be in this process. Keep in mind that this training program will also need to be accessible for everyone in the company from the management on down.
- Offer performance rewards-Another crucial component for the successful implementation of lean manufacturing is performance rewards. You will need to determine exactly what motivates your employees. If you can offer them rewards they will be much more likely to get behind your lean manufacturing initiatives and make them work. However, in order for this to work you will need to offer rewards that are of some value to them. If your employees don't value the rewards there is little chance they will work for them. In addition, offering them rewards also shows your employees that you value their contribution to your business and want to show them that.

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