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||Definition and general
Inspired from the Japanese management methods, and more specifically, the Toyota Production System, the LEAN approach is intended to have the enterprise think first and foremost about maximizing the value that its products and services can bring to the client.
The products and services that are offered must therefore answer to the requirements of the client, be provided at a lower cost, with a higher level of quality and in the shortest delay possible.
And to reach this objective, the enterprise must be the most flexible and efficient possible in its operations. This is, indeed, the ultimate goal of the LEAN approach, a systematic approach consisting in...
A certain number of tools have been developed to eliminate waste and inefficiencies and reduce delays (such as cellular layouts, pull systems, kanbans, 5S and simple visual controls).
For the entreprise as a whole
At the origin of LEAN, the approach has mainly been applied to Manufacturing (Lean Manufacturing). But nowadays, this approach is being diffused to the enterprise as a whole (Lean Enterprise). We then talk, amongst other things, of Lean Office, and, of course, of Lean Engineering and Lean Development.
Benefits of the Lean approach
There are several benefits to the LEAN approach. Amongst other things, we can identify here some tangible and significant benefits: