Manual Your 60 Minute Lean Business - Standardized Work

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The concept of standardized work is important for Lean organizations and is a foundational method for kaizen continuous improvement. Businesses should look at three different elements when looking to develop standard work:. This data will need to be collected and recorded and managers can review this information to determine and establish the most efficient sequence for production. A manager can run through several sequences to ensure the best one is chosen as the standard work. Once decided, each step will need to be defined and performed in the same manner repeatedly. It is important for managers to impress upon employees the importance of following the sequence closely, as any variations can increase cycle time or result in quality issues,.

In Lean, standards are not set in stone but rather a baseline that people should continuously seek to improve. By creating and implementing standard work processes, it will be easier to train new operators, reduce variability in manufacturing, and can even improve the safety of a facility. Unable to play video?

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Tool Organization. In the communications segment, instructors had different approaches to introduce all the students and themselves. In fact, the variability of instruction techniques used by the teachers afforded plenty of opportunities for improvement by applying standardized work. The school was the factory and the instructors, the processes. The batch was about 12 students per session — like a dozen in a box. So takt time, one of the three key elements of standardized work, would have to be 60 minutes divided by 12, or five minutes per student. Takt time is calculated as available time divided by customer demand.

All other processes were done with the entire group. Since the group lesson took 45 minutes, the other 15 minutes had to be divided equally among all students at a pace of a little over one minute per student, including complete registration and waiver, execute payment, and fit the wetsuit.

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Working sequence is another element of standardized work that Obara was able to apply to the freewheeling surfing instructors. In this case, the standard in-process stock turned out to be surf boards and students. Boards chipped or damaged in a class previously were set aside for repairs so they could be used again the next day. Now, instead of retiring the damaged boards for the entire day, instructors fix the boards as they come back, to be put in use at the next session that day. Similarly, when too many students signed up for a class, those who could be flexible with their time became standbys, waiting for the next available class.

In exchange for waiting, they got a half hour extra time on the board. Once we started seeing the results, it was impossible not to believe in it and embrace it fully. Once standardized work was fully implemented, the students had more time to surf at the end of each class, which freed instructors to do other tasks, such as repairing surfboards that had been damaged during use so they could be reused the next session. Topic Tools. View similar topics Print this topic. LEI's blank form is available in the Resource tab of this site.

Thank you. Standard Work Chart.

In Search of Operational Excellence: Six Sigma and Standard Work

Reply : Quote. Hi Robert, I would recommend the book from Joe Niederstadt for "standardized work for Non-cyclical processes. Robert, Sorry I don't have an answer for you but your question is interesting and made me ponder why would warehousing require a different formatted template for which I wasn't able to come up with a good answer.

If repackaging is required, the steps and locations might change but this could possibly be covered by developing a second chart. Breaking apart the work time and walk time might be different in warehousing if you are just considering the conveyance aspect, but warehousing can be more than just conveyance of parts from receiving to racks to shipping. I can see where a case could be made that the time to transport parts to a different location might impact time creating a challenge to calculate and determine what time to use, but this would be common with many non-repetitive manufacturing organizations.

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I hate to assume, but I think many service organizations might face the same challenge. That might provide another source of reference for you. Again, I have no answer but I would be curious as to what you see as the specific challenges.


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Thanks and Good Luck. I'm enjoying his 3rd edition of Lean Production Simplified and use his material as a reference source when training how to standardize an operation.


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I have used the Standard operations Sheet aka Standard Work Chart and other names dozens of times in manufacturing operations. In manufacturing, the SOS documents the standard for what, where, when, how many, and other things that are all variable in a warehouse or DC scenario.

Calculating Takt Time

That does not mean that is not useful, because it is, I just have to modify it to fit the situation. It is still the document that displays the standards. It would be helpful to see more examples. Robert, I'm in agreement with everything you are saying and appreciate what I am learning from your post. If it's ok, here's a couple comments and questions meant to be more of a socratic approach to helping you find your answer until someone else can jump in and provide you with the templates you are looking for.

There is no need for you to respond to these unless you feel there's a benefit. A friend of mine has a small machine shop with about 20 pieces of machining equipment in about a 25, foot facility. If one piece on the final assembly goes through a sequence involving lathe, vertical milling, automated grinding, cmm and packaging that requires about 30 minutes of total machining time and another involves the lathe, horizontal milling, manual grinding, cmm and packaging that require about 1 hour of machining time, would you attempt to use the same SWC for both?

If you are dealing with , square feet of warehouse space, can you break it apart into 10 - 20 sections and consider each section a separate "operation" from which the forklift is going to?


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  • This this make the paths seem more repeatable from a documentation standpoint? If you have it broken apart into the 10 - 20 sections and the driver makes 20 trips to complete a load, if he follows one sequence for one truck and another sequence for another truckload but they both equal about 45 minutes, do you feel this should require two separate sheets. That might sound contrary to "A" above" Could you develop a configurable template to allow you to insert a separate line item for each pallet with a standardized time for each area that you could kick out per truckload?

    Do you consider the pick from the rack and the movement to the docks as value-added from an internal perspective, or do you consider only the pick as value-added and the movement as non-value-added? Is this internal warehouse or for external customers. It's up to you to determine if a SWC is the best format to communicate the information you want to communicate.

    If you are using it for training and reference purposes it seems like it could be a great tool. Good luck. Thanks for providing a great scenario to think about. Sorry I can't give you the answer you are seeking.