Friday, 19 February 2010

Why should lean IT join the commonly used tools for continuous improvement?

Andrew Rumney, solutions director and co-founder of eBECS, challenges that lean IT should join the commonly used tools for continuous improvement.

Waste. Look around you and you will see it in your own home; things you bought but have not used, things you have bought more than one of, things you move from one place to another for no useful reason. In this scenario you are the both the customer and the provider and mostly you are making a poor job of meeting “own customer value”.

Multiply this, even in a low complex manufacturing plant or distribution organisation, and it’s no wonder lean has got such traction for meeting customer value and waste reduction initiatives. It is commonly accepted that organisations can meet their current customer needs with around 30% fewer resources – that’s all resources from space to inventory. Just imagine what you could do with that 30%! It is also accepted that traditional ERP can be a very wasteful engine.

eBECS have long been advocates of lean and with the above in mind set about creating a solution within the Microsoft AX Dynamics ERP product that help organisations deliver customer value and reduce waste – after all, although I have labelled ERP as wasteful, it does run things. It takes sales orders, it creates production orders, it orders inventory – it just does it in a wasteful push way where we need a lean pull and flow way.

When Wika Inc, a US based industrial instrument producer, set out on its lean journey it recognised that the legacy ERP system was not helping them and indeed was working against them. “We realised that in order to move our operations to the next level, we needed to make some fundamental changes. That meant moving from a batchoriented supply-chain and production process to a system based solely on customer demand,” says Michael Gerster President.

Please view the article to read more.

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