In a nutshell, “Lean” is all about eliminating waste in your business.
This has particular application to your Logistics functions, including inventory, warehousing and distribution. A few examples of waste include:
- Errors and re-work
- Unnecessary travel time
- Inefficient delivery route planning
- Duplicated processes
SCSA consultants have expertise in implementing Lean Logistics concepts, using the 5S methodology:
Remember: “waste is the enemy”.
The following five-step process summarises a methodology for implementing Lean Logistics principles:
- Identify what your customers expect. Then determine what value you add to the process. For distribution and logistics, that usually means greater velocity. What it doesn’t mean is a lot of handling (customers don’t see value in handling).
- Plot the value stream. Identify all the steps involved in moving goods through the system, by mapping all the steps in the distribution process, from order to delivery. The purpose is to identify activities that add no value so they can be eliminated.
- Make the process flow. Dismantle any roadblocks that prevent the free flow of materials through the facility.
- Pull from the customer. Lean is a pull system, drawing materials and merchandise into the distribution network based on what the customers want.
- Pursue perfection. Root out any remaining waste. Then do it again, and again. Remember, waste is the enemy.