Lean manufacturing (also known as lean production, just-in-time manufacturing, and just-in-time production, or JIT) is a way to reduce time in production. It is derived from the Toyota operating model that consists in receiving the goods necessary for production only when needed. This method reduces inventory cost and waste and increases productivity and profit. However, the downside is that he needs an accurate demand forecast to get the precise amount of required goods. For this reason, for Lean manufacturing, you need a high-quality process and reliable suppliers.
Lean was born in Japan after the second world war. The reason for the adoption of this method varied, from the scarce finance after the war, the lack of space for extensive inventory in Japan arriving at the lack of natural resources in the islands.
When the Toyota method arrived in the rest of the world, it was called Lean. But, even if it is born in the manufacturing sector, it can be applied to the other (for example, the Lean Thinking used in Scrum for software development).
For the exam you need to remember that:
- Lean manufacturing is also known as lean production, just in time manufacturing and just-in-time production or JIT;
- Lean was born in Japan in the Toyota manufacturing after the second world war;
- The reason for the adoption was about lack of finance, space, or natural resource for extensive inventory.