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Test Articulate Lesson

There is more than one way to deal with optional processes and their impact on Takt. Click through the tabs to review some of the potential strategies to manage optional processes.

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There is more than one way to deal with optional processes and their impact on Takt. Click through the tabs to review some of the potential strategies to manage optional processes.

Sequencing: If the option can be sequenced in a way that the line-up being released to the line resembles FDV, then we recommend you do so. It is unlikely, however, that you will be able to accomplish a line-up model mix close to FDV every day.

FIFO: If there is space to hold inventory in the form of a FIFO lane between the feeding and consuming processes, this is another option to consider. The options can be stored in the FIFO lane for later use. Some rearrangement may be required and that could cause delays.

Kanban: This is a more costly option that greatly simplifies the management of the optional processes. In this case, you design the optional process detached from the line and feeding a Kanban Supermarket. The downside is the additional cost of the product stored. On the plus side, you treat these options as purchased parts from the line consumption standpoint.

Low Cost Option: If the number of options is low and the cost is low too, you could design multiple IPKs for the different options and make the strategy to just “keep them full”. For low variety, low cost, this tends to be a very useful strategy.

Low Capital: When a long Takt process feeds a shorter Takt process, one of the key strategies is to oversize the feeding process by matching the Takt of the Feeding process to that of the consuming process. This is bound to increase the capital investment of the feeding process. But what if that capital investment is a few benches and hand tools? If that is the case, oversizing may be your strategy of choice. This does not mean increasing staffing if you couple it with flexing.

Flexing: We will study flexing as an operations strategy later in the class, but if operators can flex into the oversized feeding process, then they can throttle the processes up or down depending on customer demand. Oversizing a process does not mean increasing staffing, as a matter of fact it rarely does.

Make sure you keep all these strategies in mind when you are designing your line.

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