The process is concerned with working with determination and it also emphasizes on the elimination of wastages from the manufacturing process. And the concept of waste has been considered or referred as the activity which does not add value from the customer’s perspective (Industrialnews. 2013). And on the basis of the survey which has been executed by the Lean Enterprise Research Centre (LERC), approx. count of 60% of the manufacturing operations and the activities which are associated with a typical production operations are considered as waste and these are the activities which add no value at all for the customer. The concept of lean manufacturing can also be termed as an act which comprises of never ending efforts for the elimination or reduction of waste or ‘muda’ which is Japanese term which has been used for waste or an activity that consumes resources without adding value, and this has to be done in various operations such as designing, production, distribution and customer services processes. The below executed report has been analyzed on Nike Inc. which is a multinational brand name in the sector of sportswear and other related accessories (Marchwinski. 2008). The further analysis has been carried out on the concept of lean manufacturing which is concerned with the elimination of wastes which is done while the execution of the operational activities within an organization.
Lean Manufacturing and Principles
As the concept is concerned regarding the elimination or reduction of the wastage done during the manufacturing and other related processes (Slumula. 2017), hence if the principles of lean production if implemented to the service functions can bring a reduction and cut the error rates and which will bring enhancement to responsiveness and consumers satisfaction. But then also the business corporations are found very slow in implementation of the lean principles and the reason for the same is that the waste and inefficiency that can interfere with services are rarely obvious. In case of the factories where the idle workers and the stacks of goods and inventory are the prime reason of the broken processes and waste is considered as hidden in case of the services. It develops lurk between the functionalities, departments or the regions and due to which the business organizations are able to look just a part or section of the issue. Another issue is with the white-collar employees which are every much reluctant towards the concept that their work could be regulated. And this lack of standardization of consistency in the service processes can be proven costly. The processes which are complex and inefficient are slower and also have a higher rate of errors, which will also bring reduction in the overall responsiveness and satisfaction level of consumers, this will also result in an increase in risk and jeopardize compliance (Lee and Nelson, 2010). The principles of lean manufacturing and industrialization can be implemented to the service as well as production functionalities but with one big difference .i.e. the expenses are to be tackled stem from the workforce, overheads, and declining satisfaction level of consumers but not the physical inventory.
Implementation of lean principles
The term Lean has been considered as an integral part or aspect for a successful manufacturing enterprise. The basic principles of reduction and elimination of waste for bringing an increase in the manufacturing operations which has completely very much influential since when it was developed into the lean construct, and after the maturity the concept has been widely adopted or applied. The significance of the lean principles if very much relevant but however the implementation of this concept for some of the specific corporations are not straightforward and is also not successful for each time (Rose et al, 2011). And this happens because the principles were in-tact but the implementation process of the same failed. But considering this more generally, removing the issues which are associated with the change management, difficulties are still faced in making decisions regarding the which of the lean tools should be implemented for the situation. This has been considered as very much significant as the concept comprises of various mechanisms and methods, and the significance of the same is situationally specific. And hence the process of implementation of lean manufacturing requires some specific decisions, and then also there are some risks which are associated with the results: and there is certainty of success or failure for the implementation of the concept. Unfortunately no specific methods or tools are there for selecting and prioritization of the mechanisms while implementing the lean principles.
Approaches to Implementation
The process of Lean implementation comprises of the selection of an appropriate set tools and equipment’s from the lean depository for attaining the excellence in the processes (Taleghani, 2010). However there are chances of risk from over focusing on the benefit gained from the tools and are also trying for the process perfection, but the sustainability of the lean tools has also been neglected within that specific work culture. A possibility of an introduction of risk for the business organization is there with the implementation of new methods each time and also there are chances of both opportunities and threat for Nike Inc.
Lean management methods and principles
The concept of lean has been considered as the tool or a strategy which is to be developed for bringing an enhancement and improvement in the production process (Anvari, Ismail and Hojjati, 2011). The concept has been basically focused and developed on the reduction of waste of any form. And due to the reduction brought in the wastes there will be an outcome or a benefit of less requirement of efforts, space, and finance and whereas the required time is also reduced whilst quality of the products remains same or that too is also observed to be increased and the required expenses are reduced. The approach of lean management has becoming a standard for systematic productivity improvement.
The concept of lean manufacturing comprises of the set of tools and mechanisms etc. and the simple implementation decision is basically which tools are required to be implemented. It has also been observed that a varied range of tools and equipment are available (Bicheno and Holweg, 2016). A classification has been done for the work to be done and also for the use of the tools and this classification is also done on the basis of the relevance of tools to some particular wastes. These go part way for determining the issues with implementation, but then also no specificity has been attained in the situation, and hence it has been concluded that no method is relevant for finding which tools are the most relevant or appropriate for which situation. And it has also been noticed that many times the practitioners also fails or lack the means frequently for making informed decisions regarding the tools which are required to be implemented in their situation.
Implementation of Lean Manufacturing
The process of lean implementation comprises of an initial value stream mapping (VSM) which is concerned with defining the journey of betterment and improvement (Poppendieck, 2011). Next there is the organizing of the house. The process may comprise of number of working systems which are flexible and are especially 5S (sorting, straightening, systematic cleaning, standardizing, and sustaining). And after this step the other related tools and mechanisms are also considered as relevant for implementation. Some of the flexible working systems are mentioned as follows, standard work, total productivity maintenance (TPM), and mistake proofing (Jidoka), single minute exchange of dies (SMED). The further improvements may comprise of supply and demand, which has to be done by the tools such as just in time (JIT) pull systems and Heijunka which are also known as level scheduling (Taleghani, 2010). Moreover the integration process between lean and production planning and also there should be combination of control systems such as materials resource planning (MRP). This is not always easy due to the lean emphasis on pull, whereas it has been observed that many of the marketers and the producers are benefited by the adaption of the hybrid production flow control (Rajenthirakumar and Thyla, 2011). And also the development of the systems is done to operationalize the same.
The basic lean principles
Nike Inc. can make use of the five-step thought process for guiding the implementation of the lean principles and techniques which is an easy process to remember but not always easy for attainment:
- Value: The business corporation should make specification regarding the value from the standpoint of the ultimate consumers by the product family (lean-manufacturing-junction. 2014).
- Value stream mapping: A proper identification of all the relevant steps is required to be done in the value stream for each product range and also elimination of the unwanted steps which are not required for the creation of the value (educational-business-articles. 2016).
- Flow: Value creating steps are occurred in this stepand this is done in a tight sequence for a smooth flow of the products and the services towards the consumers.
- Pull: After the introduction of the flow the business entity should let the consumers to pull the value from the next up-stream operations.
- Perfection: After the specification of the value the identification of the values stream is possible (Gothelf, 2013), the unwanted or wasted steps are eliminated and the steps of flow and pull are made introduced and the process is put back to the first step. This has to be done till the state of perfection is attained and in which a perfect value is developed and no waste has been created.
Strategic development of lean manufacturing in Nike
The below presented lean strategies which can be employed by Nike Inc. and this can also be considered as the lean manufacturing and operational excellence processes techniques and this all has been done for:
- Development of the manufacturing capabilities and also the capacity of the production in step with the marketing plan
- Reduction in the risks of quality and late delivery of pairs which is to be supplied to the consumers and the retailers
- Also for implementation or adaption of tools and mechanisms for bringing continuous improvements in the production process remains competitive and sustainable
- Development and establishment of the capabilities for building and working in self-sustained processes
- Building strong and efficient relationships and bonds which will be proven beneficial for the supply chain management
- A benchmark index exercise has to be carried out and also a (VCS) a review of the activities have been made allowed for the current performance of the business organization, for the better understanding of the capabilities of distribution and quality and also setting of the key performance indicators and targets
- The tools and techniques of lean manufacturing and operational excellence are introduced through the medium of tailored coaching sessions and also the implementation is done thorough on-site shop floor projects for assuring the delivery of practical improvements
- Making the suppliers to develop and create their own suppliers and this can be done by cascading lean improvement teachings and learning further down the supply chain
- VCS monitoring and coaching can be done with the change with the senior authorities and shop floor staff members and employees for bringing an improvement in the management potential and capabilities
The below mentioned are the tools and mechanisms which can be implemented by Nike Inc.:
- 5s programmers
- Establishment of the new mechanisms and tools for working line balancing
- Building new ergonomic working stations and shop floor layouts
- Floors and flows for factory units and plants
- Availability of the studies for operations the machines and tools
- Controlling the inputs given and outputs received of WIP on the shop floor
- Multi skilling and multi machine manning
- Rapid changeovers
- Improvement techniques for utilization of machinery and equipment’s
Use of principles by Nike
Sustainable innovation has been changed in the numerous of forms for Nike. In the present era the term innovation means a continuous requirement or need for the adaption an learning the surrounding environment (nike. 2017). For instance, in the year 2012, the business corporation introduced a product by making use of an innovative technique which is known as Nike fly-knit technology and also new manufacturing processes were adapted (Wang, 2013). The fly-knit lunar 1+ running shoe were launched by the business entity in 2013 which was designed so that it reduced the waste in the upper part of the shoe for about 80% and this estimation was taken on an average as compared to the traditional methods (Modi and Thakkar, 2014). An approx. estimate of the savings done of the materials after the introduction of the fly-knit lunar 1+ running shoe in 2012 was 66000 Kg as compared to the traditional methods of manufacturing. Moreover there were other opportunities such as an improvement was also observed in the working conditions within the global supply chain and beyond the reach of any of the business entity and will also require collaboration with the other members or participants of supply chain management (Schmidt and Lyle, 2010). The business corporation has been working on the mentioned changes by collaborating with the Fair Labor Association and this has to be done for the development of a sustainable compliance initiative. This initiative has a capability of providing tools and techniques for bringing improvements in the quality and consistency and also in the efficiency of the efforts in the organization for complying with the economy’s laws and regulations and company standards. Delivery of a profitable growth through sustainably producing and sourcing and this has been estimated as the future of lean for Nike Inc. And for making this happen the business corporation is making Nike Inc.’s manufacturing standards (Mckinsey. 2017). A commitment will be required by the business entity to lean as a part of being adapted into the base of the source and another minimum commitment and advancements and this will be done for positive ratings by involving the same in the manufacturing and sourcing sustainability index (Taleghani, 2010). This has been considered as a significant element of manufacturing index which executes assessment of factories and units based on the quality, expenses, The business entity has been working with the supply chain management for demonstrating the value of lean which has been considered as the driving factor of sustained, enhanced business performance and in this process the workforce is engaged and involved in driving the business success and growth through continuous improvement. Also Nike has been making use of some of the standard metrics for assessment of factory adoption which comprises of the workforce management, productivity, absenteeism, turnover and factory engagement and factory implementation of the outcomes from the workforce engagement (Womack and Jones, 2010). For maintaining and managing the brand value and also for sustainability the innovation and revolutionary practices are been considered as very much critical (Distelhorst, Hainmueller and Locke, 2014). Further it has been also stated that a work perspective which is supported by lean principles are very much dependent on the flexibility and involvement of the workforce of the business organization. And hence it has been concluded that change management of the system of lean production should be made focused on the aspects such as impacts of change of the employees, impacts of effective leadership and also the effectiveness of the communication mediums (Nguyen and Do, 2016). With that in mind recognition of manufacturing according to the lean principles which may blow up the technical and operational changes from the bottom towards a leaner business corporation with better and improved culture, strategy and structure (Anvari, Ismail and Hojjati, 2011). The below presented on a demonstration for a growing recognition of the significance of the HRM practices and for the same attention should be paid.
- Coaching has been considered as the practice which questions status quo and also allows the other employees to learn and make improvements in their mistakes (Aziz and Hafez, 2013). Moreover inspiration and motivation is also provided so as to make them perform better by bringing an enhancement in the cooperation and commitment to change.
- Communication is one of the medium or channel which can be considered as very much significant for strengthen the change process as sharing of information will be allowed among the employees for developing an understanding about the need for the change.
- Involvement and engagement of the workforce is a practice which will bring an enhancement of the commitment and ownership of the employees through the change process.
- Motivational incentives is considered as a practice which is concerned with the development of an environment which provides motivational rewards and incentives, ranging from how work has been planned and managed so as to level up training that the staff receives (Leffingwell, 2010).
- Recognition is a practice which is essentially in favor of the development of the of a new performance standards which occurs to a subtle but public way and this also encourages the employees to perform in their best and can also be exercised in many other departments (Goetsch and Davis, 2014).
- Teamwork promotion allows and enables through the constructing more significant and relevant outcomes during the change process (Porteous and Rammohan, 2013).
From the above carried out analysis it has been inferred that lean manufacturing is a process which should be adapted by a business corporation as it is concerned with the elimination and reduction in wastage which is caused by a manufacturing firm during various production processes executed within an organization. In the above presented report Nike Inc. is the business entity in which how the lean manufacturing process and the related theories can be implemented. Moreover the principles of lean process have also been explained and the working or the operations of the process should also be done accordingly. But this is not the only criteria for getting recognized in the market place as a successful lean practicing entity. The standardized principles which are being practiced by the manufacturing units are also required to be followed by the employees.
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