March 2022 ASCE-NH Newsletter | Page 5


Derived from the concepts of the Ford Motor Company , lean manufacturing was instituted by Henry Ford in the way of the assembly line . The assembly line drastically reduced the time to make the Model T ( from 12.5 hours down to 93 minutes !) and reduced the amount of manpower needed , substantially increasing Ford ’ s bottom line ( 1). It was later mastered by Toyota Motor Company and became known as the Toyota Production System ( TPS ) starting in the 1930s . Toyota recognized the success Ford was having making cars efficiently and more affordable to everyday people using assembly lines .
“ Lean manufacturing is a production system that focuses on reducing waste , creating customer value and seeking continuous process improvement ” ( 2 ). By reducing waste and improving the manufacturing process , the manufacturer is able to sell a higher quality product at a lower cost in a shorter amount of time . The Toyota Production System uses an assembly line and makes each task in the line as simple as possible . By eliminating the number of steps at each task , the product is made correctly and able to move quickly from station to station . The end result is a constant flow of completed products and maximum efficiency .
( 3 )
Now I ’ m pretty sure that most people reading this article aren ’ t working on an assembly line , but lean can be applied to just about any job or business . We all have situations where there is a holdup on a project whether it is from a bad process , error , long lead time , etc . Take a moment to think about how you could maximize workflow and reduce waste in your profession . Recognizing the types of waste in your profession is the first step in applying lean manufacturing .
Sources :
1 https :// www . encyclopedia . com / science-and-technology / technology / technology-terms-and-concepts /
2 https :// www . projectmanager . com / blog / what-is-lean-manufacturing
3 https :// www . fieldwire . com / blog / eight-wastes-of-lean-construction /