How often have we heard that 5s, OEE and SMED are all old hat and past their sell by date. There is nothing wrong with 5s, OEE and SMED, they are all fabulous tools and all can deliver great results. The problem arises when the tools are used at the wrong point in the improvement journey of a business.
Within a lean transformation we need to develop improvement systems that address what is in front of us and what needs to be improved. We need to consider the long game. I have seen companies survey their customers when they have not stabilised their operation. The salesman comes back with a load of great things to do, but we have not capacity to do them, as a result we do nothing – other than disappoint our customers.
Customer management should be considered as a system, first fix QCD, once QCD is stable, talk to them about what they would like in addition-customer value surveys, so a stabilised process is developed, now we can look at market research and the completion to further develop, once this has delivered we can then think about integrating our offer further with the customer….timeframe for this 5 years.
We need to look at our business and identify what are our business critical processes then develop improvement systems around these. We should consider our long term plans within these systems and designed the appropriate tool implementation logic to ensure the journey is a success.