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Kanban Production System Basics

  • Kanban is considered to be one of the central elements of Lean Manufacturing, and this presentation will explain some basics of what a Kanban System is, how it works, and how it can be implemented.
  • I consider the definition of Kanban to be a signaling system that triggers more products to be produced and delivered. Our cars have a gas gage that works on the Kanban principle. It signals you when the gas has been consumed and more gas is required.
  • One of the oldest examples of a simple Kanban system I can think of is the one used for home milk delivery. The process is simple and incredibly effective. The night before the milkman is scheduled to come, just place any empty bottles outside your door. The milkman picks up the empties and replaces them with full bottles of milk.
  • Most companies use a Push Production System which is to produce product based on what they think is going to be consumed rather than what is actually consumed. Imagine trying to guess how much milk each customer is going to consume each day. If you are wrong, you will either be overproducing or under-producing. And guess what; your chances of being wrong are really high! Both over and under production have a negative impact on business and will be discussed later.
  • The premise of Kanbans is that material will not be produced or moved until a customer sends the signal to do so.
  • Kanban relates to the Just-in-Time principle of producing only what is needed, only in the amounts needed, and only when it is needed.
  • Kanban production systems are also known as a pull production system because you are waiting for the customer to signal that product has been consumed and replacements are needed as in this milk delivery system.

The full DVD video has MUCH more information on Kanban and production systems. If you have any questions on the video or implementing these techniques in your business, please don't hesitate to call us today.


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