Managing Supply Chain Complexity in a Tea Manufacturing Company

Topics: Lean manufacturing, Six Sigma, Toyota Production System Pages: 4 (1026 words) Published: June 12, 2012
Dip Com (LM ) –SCM Tutorial 6 Text Book-Chapter Eight Discussion Questions 1. (1).Explain why lean production and Six Sigma are so important to successful supply chain management. Ans. 

Use of the term lean has begun to replace use of the term JIT, and is associated with the Toyota Production system. Lean is broader, although closely related to JIT, and describes a philosophy incorporating tools that seek to economically optimize time, human resources, assets, and productivity, while improving product and service quality. In the early 1980s, these practices started making their way to the Western world, first as JIT and then today, as lean production or lean manufacturing. Lean production has evolved into a way of doing business for many organizations. Quality assessment and improvement is a necessary element of lean production. First, as the process of waste elimination begins to shrink inventories, problems with human resource requirements, queues, lead times, quality and timing are typically uncovered both in production and with inbound and outbound materials. Eventually, these problems are remedied, resulting in higher levels of quality and customer service. Second, as the drive to continuously reduce throughput times continues, the need for a continuing emphasis on improving quality throughout the productive system results in the need for an overall quality improvement or Six Sigma program. Six Sigma stresses a commitment by the firm’s top management to enable the firm to identify customer expectations and excel in meeting and exceeding those expectations. Since environmental changes and changes in technology and competition cause customer expectations to change, firms must then commit to a program of continual reassessment and improvement; this, too, is an integral part of Six Sigma quality. Thus, to achieve the primary objectives of low cost, high quality, and reduced lead times, supply chain management requires the use of lean and Six Sigma...
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