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Single piece flow: Toyota’s recessive Power

Over Ford in ruins? Is Toyota’s success just a TPS? This is all wrong. The reason is that many people regard the tools and techniques used by Toyota as the secret to the success of corporate change, without a deep understanding of the hidden power that supports Toyota’s evergreen. China supply Custom stainless steel metal aluminum fabrication

Many people think of TPS as using Kanban, lights, automation systems, single-piece streams, or U-shaped teams, so they start to invest money to retrofit production lines to install Kanban. But the result always ends in failure.

The reason is that these enterprises regard TPS tools and skills as the secret of the success of corporate change.

Admittedly, these tools, methods and techniques have given birth to the revolution of lean production in the world, but this is definitely not the essence of Toyota production management.

In order to better understand the essence of Japanese enterprise TPS, we first put forward three questions, in fact, these three issues is the essence of TPS, understand the three issues. It is not difficult to understand why Chinese enterprises always draw tigers from Japan.

1. What is the essence of Toyota’s success with TPS?

2. What is the core of the implementation of lean production operations?

3. What is the 3M of lean production?

In fact, these three questions follow the logic from the core to the form, and the way we understand the affairs is from the appearance to the essence, so we might as well start with the second question. Looking for the logic and inner spirit of TPS from Toyota’s development. China supply Custom stainless steel metal aluminum fabrication

TPS is at the core of the production operation level

Let’s analyze the background of the birth of TPS first:

After World War II, Japan’s ongoing post-war reconstruction, its auto industry is like a babbling baby, is facing a huge dilemma today, it is hard to imagine.

In 1950, TOYOTA’s boss, Toyoda Eiji from the United States back to Japan to study automobile factory, at the time of the general manager of TOYOTA Ono Chi called his office, very natural and very calmly handed Ono Ichii a new job, is to try to improve the manufacturing process of TOYOTA, with Ford’s productivity as the goal, to enhance TOYOTA’s productivity level.

Compared with Ford, TOYOTA faces a lot of difficulties:

The market demand of Ford T car is very large, so Ford is implementing mass production in order to meet the needs of the market. However, the market faced by TOYOTA is different, so it must use a assembly line to make many cars with low output, so as to maintain the attraction of the market.

Ford Motor Co has enough funds to ensure that they carry out mass production. TOYOTA was poor at the bottom of the pot. In order to ensure that the capital chain did not suffer a tragic breakdown, TOYOTA must be able to make quick turnover of funds.

Ford Motor Co can set up their own deep pockets, large warehouses and workshops, and TOYOTA could not invest a lot of money for the construction of warehouse and workshop.

This is an almost unimaginable task is almost nothing, presumptuous.

But that is not the case, Toyoda Eiji before making this decision is probably already have ready plans to meet a situation, strategizing.

After the field trip to the United States, Toyoda Eiji was surprised to find that the large-scale production mode of the United States had not changed much from 30s to 50s, and this way itself had many shortcomings.

Toyoda Eiji saw a large number of production equipment manufacturing process, and stacked together, until after a batch filled and then sent to another department; then for a while and then sent to the next stack, led to the mass production process. Each continuous process, greatly delayed delivery and occupy a lot of space.

And the only way to reduce the average unit cost is that expensive equipment does not stop production staff, non-stop work. Enterprise rewards those who produce more products, the machine and the staff kept busy with production department manager, in mass production out of something hidden into batches of defective products are within a few weeks it can not be perceived.

Toyoda Eiji sees all this in his eyes, and also sees the opportunity for them to catch up and surpass.

After Ono Chi Toyoda Eiji received instructions, again visited the United States at the same time, reading the works of Henry Ford “now and in the future”, Ford is a concept and idea of continuous uninterrupted process that Ono Chi found a magic weapon for defeating the enemy, but also deepen the Daye high Ford thought:

1, the flow not only needs continuous continuous, but also the flow should be the smallest possible batch, and the best is the single piece flow (single piece flow).

2, employees must be good at making continuous improvements in the process to make them more fluent, time-saving and less productive.

Insummaryofthesetwopoints, Ono Chi finally succeeded in design can according to customer needs and the flexibility to change, and also can improve the efficiency of the single piece flow production mode, and perfect and put into practice, namely one-piece flow. So as to lay a foundation for TOYOTA to become the new overlord of the automotive industry, has created a model of manufacturing to change the world.

So, TPS’s original nature and the essence of the most part of it is to establish a continuous uninterrupted flow, at the operational level, the single piece flow undoubtedly become the core principle. Other tools of lean production, such as fast switching, standardization, pull production mode are developed in order to create a continuous the operation process and its services.

Single piece flow and 3M

Understanding the core principles of the TPS operation level, we will learn the 3M of TOYOTA lean production again, that is, the third questions you have received.

It’s easy for you to understand that single piece flow is a good way to satisfy lean production. Every step in the process can produce products needed for next step with minimum batches in one beat time, so that continuous and continuous production process can be established. China supply Custom stainless steel metal aluminum fabrication

It requires smooth, rhythmic, smooth and efficient production. Every step should be so fast and slow. Just like heartbeat, we must keep our own rules.

The reality is often not as simple and beautiful as we think. In such a specific way of implementation and implementation, we will encounter many unexpected difficulties and situations.

With the TOYOTA model is a large area of promotion, make to order production mode has swept the world, all enterprises hope the customer demand and order make customers want products, although this is the ultimate goal of lean production mode, but also the production and characteristics of industrial conflict. For example, the change of market demand, changes in the production of varieties, changes, and even parts of the supply of personnel, technology changes will lead to a single piece flow fluctuation.

How do we avoid and deal with these difficulties? In fact, many tools and methods of TOYOTA are to guarantee and improve the single piece flow, and the Toyota Corporation’s 3M is also born.

The 3M here is not the 3M company in the United States, but three of the three kinds of production that need to be eliminated and avoided in the “TOYOTA model”.

The first M is muda, also a waste of meaning in Japanese, the earth people know that it is very important to eliminate waste, not to say much.

The second M is Muri, which means overloading of employees or equipment.

In a sense, Muri is just the opposite of muda. Muri is pushing personnel or machines beyond the limit. Overload production will lead to safety and quality problems, so Muri is also a phenomenon we must put an end to.

The third M is called mura, which means unbalanced and uneven. Literally, mura is actually the integration of Muri and muda. In fact, the generation of mura is also the result of the co existence of Muri and muda.

Because the market is hard to predict, and at the same time, there will often be “small things” like shutdowns, parts missing or quality problems in your factory, which will cause your production to fluctuate frequently.

There is no steady progress in production. The process of no interruption has also become a castle in the air. How to achieve stable and stable production? TOYOTA has started a hard exploration, and Muri and mura have also been born.

On the whole, the customer demand is not expected to be able to, in a changing environment to achieve their own production smoothly, the only way is to rely on a small amount of buffer or parts warehouse to ensure the smooth one-piece flow. This is Ono Chi observed the supermarket replenishment system inspiration.

There is a buffer that finished goods inventory, you can ensure that in accordance with the established rhythm and time to produce a daily ration products: when more orders, ensure you won’t buffer inventory in order to achieve the production plan and overtime; when fewer orders, you have to do is to complete the buffer stock replenish your consumption. “Tolerate the small waste, so that you can avoid the whole production process and supply chain resulting in more waste.

In fact, the phenomenon of imbalance is not only leads to overall change in the number, there is a disequilibrium phenomenon produced in the production of each process between the internal supply relations also need to be eliminated. In the overall number unchanged, the number of different types of products, all products are not the same, each product in the production process of the same production is not balanced.

The solution to TOYOTA is the balance of production plans.

Although the use of Kanban system to solve a buffer inventory imbalance problem, but this is not a lot of absolute buffer, the buffer capacity is limited. In order to solve the problem of imbalance, TOYOTA from the outset to consider how to arrange the production plan, it introduces the production plan of equalization, is how different parts the rhythm of determining the quantity of each product according to the output.

The essence of TPS’s success

The history of TOYOTA TPS, we can see a lot of lean production methods in practice gradually rich and be perfected. But why TPS was born in TOYOTA, why so many work methods summarized to ensure the production of TPS? In fact, the answer to this question, it is the first problem we propose the essence of the success of TPS implementation: TOYOTA!

The TOYOTA model can be briefly summarized into two pillars: one for “continuous improvement” and the second to “respect employees”.

Continuous improvement is the basic way for Toyota Auto Body Co to run businesses. It challenges all things, and more importantly, creates the spirit of continuous learning, and accepts and keeps changing environment.

To create this environment, we must respect employees. TOYOTA is through team members to actively participate in the work to improve cooperation and play everyone’s creativity.

We illustrate the essence of the TOYOTA model with the development of single piece flow in lean production.

Some TPS masters evaluate single piece flow.

1., single piece flow is a very strict process. Problems must be quickly perceived and need to be solved quickly. Otherwise, production will stop. This will force businesses and employees to feel the urgent need to respond to business problems (< lean thinking >).

Manufacturing method of 2. in one piece flow, if there is a problem the entire production line will be suspended, this seems to be a bad production system. However, when the production is stopped, everyone is forced to solve the problem immediately. So we are forced to think the solution, through the thorough thinking team. The members therefore grow, become more competent. In other words, we created confusion, so we must try to solve the problem of force (Ura Teruyuki former president of North American TOYOTA motor manufacturing company).

3., inventories make people develop bad habits that do not immediately confront and deal with problems. If you don’t deal with problems immediately, you will not be able to improve your process. Single piece flow and continuous improvement are like Siamese babies (< TOYOTA road >).

The language of the masters can help us understand a single piece of flow.

In short, one piece flow significance not only lies in the implementation of one piece flow and shorten the delivery cycle, reduce inventory, improve the quality of quality. More importantly, when problems occur, forcing all members of one piece flow full participation in problem solving, at the same time requirements quickly solve the problem thoroughly, which is the intrinsic performance the TOYOTA model of continuous improvement and full participation.

In fact, one piece flow operation group, need to have a strong sense of discipline and high consciousness in order to maintain its operation, while many companies began to do not have this ability, the formation of this ability requires a painful Nirvana process. Only through the challenges and pain, can lead to significant achievements.

And this painful Nirvana process is just the result of TOYOTA employees’ cooperative creation under the team atmosphere of respecting human nature and respecting the creativity of employees. Therefore, there are many tools for ensuring the smooth operation of production processes.

So, we should understand and respect for employees, motivate employees to actively participate in the improvement to build learning organization is the key to the cultural level of the TPS, which is the core principle of one piece flow TPS operating level. TOYOTA is the root causes of success, it can cultivate leadership team and culture and enterprises to create and maintain a learning the tools and methods. The reason why the TOYOTA can continue using TPS, must be attributed to TOYOTA in order to understand and motivate employees based business philosophy.

While many companies are unable to digest the single reason China is that they do not understand the current challenges facing the continuous improvement and pain, the result must pay the cost of the company once found, immediately give up and return to the original road. Unfortunately, China many enterprises did not understand the essence of one piece flow. They think the one piece flow as a toy like display uninterrupted flow advantages is a good idea, but the actual application of this concept leads to some short-term costs and improve delivery of prolonged pain, it may not.

For a long time, always in the humanitarian criticism field assembly manufacturing enterprises in the enterprise is the most boring, the most depressed and most humble work, deprived employees thinking ability. While TOYOTA, not only is the management, finance, human resources and attention to improve their sales process, the grass-roots staff also have the same rights and obligations, they will also try to improve the way they work out, meet customer requirements of value flow and innovation.

From this point, TOYOTA is the real learning enterprise, it has been learning and evolution for nearly a century. So, we engage in lean production in the enterprise, the most important is to establish a kind of respect for employees, so that all employees are involved, play staff creativity, build a learning organization culture. The only way to make improvements continue to make the pursuit of perfection and excellence of the thought of enterprises into the blood and bone marrow.

This is not the flashy rhetoric, but TOYOTA to senior supervisor, to the factory actual execution of a criterion of value creation level employees pursued at work, a kind of action that way makes employee’s enterprising spirit and creativity into full play. It is the double helix structure of the TOYOTA road to improve and change a flag and other enterprises in the world leader.

Such a company, no matter what type of production, even without the use of Kanban can achieve success.

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