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The Importance of Standard Work and Daily Management in Your Journey to Become World Class
In general, American businesses lack the discipline to consistently write or follow process procedures throughout their organization (including all shifts.) Even our well written ISO procedures are collecting dust on the shelf. The result is process variation and scrap, and Kaizen Events where the results do not stick.
by Larry Rubrich
Standard Work is the documented procedures and methods for people and factory machines or office equipment to work together and perform value-added work while minimizing all forms of process waste.
Standard Work means that our associates:
- Follow the same documented procedures each time
- Do the same sequence of work each time
- Use the same tools, supplies, machines, and equipment each time
- Store supplies and raw materials in the same place every day
Standard Work as a Part of Daily Management
Daily Management is the performance of business fundamentals in an organization required to serve customers and be profitable on a day-to-day basis. A World Class Organization can be built only on a strong foundation of an under-control workforce and processes. Lean and Lean improvements require the discipline of having procedures throughout the organization that all the associates follow. Lean can be successful only when the daily business fundamentals are under control - those things that you do on a daily basis to serve your customers and run the business.
Without the discipline of Daily Management and the updating of improvements with new Standard Work, Lean, or any other type of improvements, are not sustainable. These improvement efforts would then just be added to the organization's wasteful activities. See figure below.
Standard Work, also called (Standard Operations) includes:
- Takt Time
- Standard Work Distribution and Sequence
- Standard Work Sheets
Takt is a German word that means "time beat" or rhythm. Takt time (TT) is the available processing time divided by the total of all the customers' requirements for a process or procedure. Takt Time is the rate of service required to meet customer demand. Each step of the processes' cycle time must be less than or equal to the TT for the entire process to meet TT.
Takt Time is calculated as follows:
Takt Time = Total Daily Processing Time
Total Daily Customer Requirements
Remember: Processing time does not include breaks, lunches (unrelieved breaks & lunches), 5S, meeting time, or any time not available to process the customer's need.
Producing at a rate faster than TT will build inventory, while producing at a rate slower than TT will shut your customer down.
Standard Work Distribution and Sequence
- Documents how a team member performs a series of repetitive steps within a process
- It may be different than the actual process steps (additional value-added activities may be added to eliminate waiting time)
- Recognizes walking time
- Compares cycle time to takt time (to make sure TT is not exceeded)
- Highlights waiting time (double headed arrow)
- Created when all the cycle times are below the takt time
- Documents safety, quality, WIP, cycle time, and sequence of steps
- Displays team member movements if required by the process
When the process step instructions (job instructions) are long, they may be included on separate sheets as shown below.
Remember that because written instructions are subject to interpretation, you should maximize the use of pictures when creating job instructions.
Standard Work is a "living document" that represents the safest, easiest, and best process/steps/methods known today. Following Standard Work improves productivity while reducing errors and variation which improves quality. Standard Work allows us to design processes that will meet the customer's delivery requirements.
As "waste" is identified in the current process, improvements are made and the Standard Work is updated to standardize the improvement.
Team Facilitator -- An Essential Role
As organizations transition to a team based culture, the importance of a Team Facilitator becomes apparent as these organizations discover that most of their associates are not skilled at being effective team members.
by Mattie Watson
Most organizations, as they begin their Lean journey, recognize the importance of teams in the Lean implementation process. Quickly, teams are formed and projects established with expectations of great results. Unfortunately, most associates are not skilled at being effective team members. Nor do they intuitively know how to transition from being told what to do to being empowered. The behavioral changes required by everyone on the teams must be supported by an objective third party until the group begins to exhibit the skills listed below on their own.
Beyond the skills that the Facilitator will impart on the individual team members and to the team itself (developed in the next paragraph), selecting a Facilitator candidate begins with the following:
- This should be a person already in the organization, going outside is a distant second choice.
- This person must be a volunteer, this is not a position that you recruit for, or talk someone into.
- Excellent communication and people skills are required - Facilitators must be able to communicate effectively with everyone in the organization - regardless of position.
- The candidate should have no organizational "baggage" - they must be trusted throughout the organization.
Having passed the above criteria, Facilitator candidates should have, or be willing to develop, the following expertise:
- Extensive knowledge of the team development process - An understanding of the stages of team development plus how to navigate them is required.
- Strong team building skills - These include how to resolve conflict, provide feedback, and communicate in the team environment.
- Effective meeting skills - Knowledge of how to keep meetings focused and on track to meet stated objectives is essential.
- Problem solving skills - Teams must be taught how to analyze problems, brainstorm solutions, and implement improvements. Facilitators are instrumental in providing this instruction as well as training in specific problem solving tools such as Pareto analysis, histograms, control charts, etc.
- Presentation skills - Facilitators will be making presentations to teams, management, and others in the organization. They must feel comfortable with this process.
Ideally, Team Facilitators will be on good terms with everyone on the team they are facilitating. Team members should view the facilitator as neutral and fair so trust can grow.
Given the importance of what an organization is trying to accomplish in their Lean implementation, it would be foolhardy to leave to chance the development of the teams who will make the objective a reality. Support from management by providing skilled, trained Facilitators will increase the success of the Lean implementation exponentially.
Developing a Lean Culture -- Setting Behavioral Expectations
The Four Components of a Successful "Lean as a System" Implementation in Your Organization