A key prerequisite of supply chain optimization is real-time supply chain visibility. In the ideal state of the demand-driven supply chain, material flows in a synchronized fashion from one tier to the next, while remaining responsive to variation. Visibility’s power is in its ability to drive the supply chain partners towards realizing this ideal by reducing risk, supply chain waste (cost), and speed to market.
Imagine applying lean principles to the most common batch-process in most offices; the monthly financial close. Many companies take days or weeks to close their accounting books and prepare financial statements every single month. While it may seem like lean principles could never be meaningfully applied to such a quantitative and seemingly foundational business process that couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, many lean organizations reduce their month-end closing activities to a single day, while maintaining accuracy and significantly improving the efficiency of their closing process.
Simply put, performance measures are quantified measurements of how well an organization, value stream, or process performs. But not all performance measures are created equal. For lean manufacturers, lean success requires lean performance measures developed to drive high performance.
Cost-plus pricing can be fine when a lean manufacturer offers a standardized product with limited competition. Unfortunately, most manufacturers offer highly unique products or highly commoditized products. For these manufactures, target costing is a vital part of the product development process. Target costing involves understanding the needs and wants of customers, determining how much they are actually willing to pay for the value a product delivers, and defining the organization’s necessary profit before determining product cost.
Inventory management is vital to lean manufacturing success. On that note, before we can improve our inventory management processes it’s vital that we grasp a few basics. First, there are ultimately 3 different categories of inventory. Inventory accounts for all raw materials (RM), work in process (WIP), and finished goods (FG). Second, all inventory must be accounted for the manufacturer’s balance sheet, while all inventory changes must be accounted for on its income statement. Third…