Thursday, September 24, 2009

Visual Board for Production Supplies

In our work environments it can be far too easy to be complacent in our surroundings. Many companies are trying to find ways to manage their production or service costs. We need supplies to do our jobs and many times we are unfamiliar with the cost of these supplies. Unfornuately ordering of supplies is usually done by some central procurement function removed from production. Below is visual board from a recent factory visit where the production supplies, part numbers, and their costs are displayed.



This is a quick and easy solution to get employees familiar with the cost of various items in their work place and involved in managing the cost of these supplies. Information is empowering in this case.

Some may say that with standard work the exact usage of these items may be better regulated. I would agree they are right. The issue is not every organization implements standard work on the first day of their Lean Journey. This visual system can help where standard work is not yet in practice.

What methods do you use to involve employees in the cost and usage of consumable production or service supplies?

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