AGH Journal of Mining and Geoengineering • vol. 36 • No. 3 • 2012
IDEA OF ADAPTATION VALUE STREAM MAPPING METHOD
TO THE CONDITIONS OF THE MINING INDUSTRY
1. Value Stream Mapping method
The Value Stream Mapping (VSM) method is one of the tools of the lean manufacturing methodology. It originates in the Toyota Production System (TPS). In Toyota this method was called “Material and Information Flow Mapping”. This technique enables analyzing and designing the flow of materials and information required to bring a product or a service to an internal or external customer. In the automotive industry it is widely used to optimize processes, eliminate waste, set proper level of stock and, last but not least, to actually see and understand the real process. VSM helps to understand and streamline work processes using tools and techniques of Lean Manufacturing. The aim of VSM is to identify, demonstrate and decrease waste in the process. It can serve as a starting point to help management, engineers, production associates, schedulers, suppliers and customers recognize waste and identify its causes. VSM can be a communication tool, but also may be used as a strategic planning tool. A value stream can be defined as all the actions — both value added and nonvalue added — currently required to bring a product (service) through the main production flows essential to every product .
Value Stream Mapping is used to represent the current state of the production system and the future (“ideal”) state that are developed to implement lean solutions. Future state map is a basis in the process of developing implementation plans to install lean systems . VSM is in fact a sophisticated flow charting method that helps visualizing processes and track performance. This method enables determining which steps add value and which do not. A step (operation) that adds value can be defined as a step in the production process that improves the product for the customer. Non-value added steps can be defined as activities *
Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Wroc aw University of Technology, Wroc aw
that do not contribute to the product or the process and should therefore be eliminated. They are simply waste.
In a typical manufacturing enterprise a current state map is usually created as a onepage flow chart that depicts the existing production path of a product from the customer’s request to delivery. An important goal of value stream mapping is to identify processes that do not provide value so they can be improved. In lean methodology, value is described as anything the customer is willing to pay for. Processes that do not provide value are called waste. Implementation Lean Manufacturing philosophy in VSM method is that each process of the value stream should produce only what the next process (its customer) needs. In addition, it should be done exactly in time the recipient actually reported demand. This concept aims to combine all the processes in a value stream in a fluent flow, that will guarantee the shortest execution time, the highest quality and lowest cost. Mapping, as a qualitative (not quantitative) tool, allows to describe the company’s organization in a detailed way in order to create the right conditions for the flow and helps avoiding making random decisions . Before drawing a current-state map it is necessary to identify value streams existing in a company and to select a representative value stream, for which the map will be developed.
2. Value and waste definition
In the Lean methodology right understanding of value is crucial. Only customer can properly define the value. Value definition is meaningful only when it is expressed in relation to a particular product or service (or both) that meet customer needs at a specified price in a specified time. To enable using the Value Stream Mapping method in the mining industry a definition of value must be established. Mining industry is very...
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