What Is Lean, and Why Is It Important?
Have your heard of Lean principles in manufacturing before? Do you use it at work? If not, it’s worth considering. Believe it or not, it’s a simple concept that can be difficult to implement. Although often associated with manufacturing, Lean tools and trainings are ideal for any industry, including supply-chain management. So what is Lean, and why is it important? Let’s dig in!
What is Lean?
Lean is a set of principles used to remove wasteful actions and inefficiencies within your supply chain. These principles include:
- Identify Value
- Map the Value Stream
- Create Flow
- Establish Pull
- Seek Perfection
Sometimes we complicate solutions in order to improve our business, but in reality, simplifying processes have a better impact. Executives need to pay as much attention to creating a better material flow in their picking, packing, and shipping areas as they do on the manufacturing floor. Doing so will help you simplify.
Why is it important in your warehouse?
Simply put, being Lean in your warehouse operations will save you time and money and will empower your business to improve continuously. Do you want anything more than that?
For example, implementing these principles will enable you to simplify packaging, streamline material flow, reduce errors, eliminate extra handling, reduce floor-space requirements, and improve inventory management.
Over time, improvements in pick or packing add up quickly to significant cost savings. Logistics costs are on the rise and are now, sometimes, more than 10 percent of company sales. This means that utilizing the fundamentals of Lean tools could save you quite a bit in operating costs.
In the end, you can focus more on bigger management decisions and long-term goals instead of just the short-term. Sounds great, right?
Once again, a Lean supply chain is one that actually functions using these principles and creates a work culture that fosters continuous improvement. Your business will be better off with it, so make it happen! You won’t regret it.
Ask our team of experts to help you simplify your supply chain.