Wednesday, 31 August 2016

What are the different types of relationship in the supply chain?

Here is some information about different types of relationships that are formed in the supply chain.
  1. Supply chain relationships vary and could include arm’s length relationships to vertical integrated relationships. The amount of contact and integration levels varies greatly between these different types.
  2. Choosing the right relationship to form can be helped by realising that some suppliers are more strategic than others. One way to choose is by segmenting the supplier base using the purchase portfolio index and dividing the suppliers based on strategy, bottleneck, non-critical and leverage characteristics.
  3. The three stages of partnership developments are cooperation, coordination and collaboration. Collaborative partnerships are characterised by the amount of activities that are involved and in long term commitments.
  4. Partnerships can create added value to the supply relationship. The added value is formed by sharing information, being trusted and open, sharing the risks and benefiting together, sharing goals, having compatible philosophies and recognising mutual interdependence.

Tuesday, 30 August 2016

Implementing partnerships: What are the barriers to achieving strategic partnerships in the supply chain?

A strategic partner refers to one who becomes a collaborator in the long term in the supply chain.  Here is an example of the process in becoming a strategic partner:
  1. Begin open market negotiations with arm’s length relationships
  2. Cooperation using fewer suppliers with longer termed contracts
  3. Coordination by using information links and integration
  4. Collaboration by using joint strategies and sharing technologies
As the relationship grows from cooperation to collaboration, the obligations increase. Coordination includes rules of the road and these rules are a vital step to integrate the supply chain. Collaboration moves beyond integration as it includes long-term commitments to share the technology and control systems and integrate planning. The two partners become interdependent and adapt to one another and create logistics government processes together.
  • There are barriers to achieving strategic partnerships and they include the following:
  • Not using power appropriately
  • Focusing heavily on negative implications when forming a partnership
  • Price is the vital attribute in the supplier selection
  • Buyers focus on their own interest
  • Buyers continue to be opportunistic and look for gains at their partners expense

Monday, 29 August 2016

Supplier development: How can upstream supply processes be integrated to improve material flow?

Upstream supply processes can be integrated to increase the responsiveness of the supply chain.  The benefits of integration include reducing lead times.  The integration process aligns the critical processes, which are product development, payment and material replenishment. Collaborative planning and strategy development should also be taken into consideration in aligning.

Joint strategy development is required. The customer remains the focus on the joint strategic goals but all key suppliers are now working to achieve these goals together and this is what benefits all of the partners. Enhancement of the process integrations can be achieved by the creation of supplier development teams. The teams work closely with the suppliers and discover ways to achieve process alignment.  This may include building a shared information highway that links vendor and customer together. It also includes the creation of common product ID codes.  It gives a more responsive supply chain.

Saturday, 27 August 2016

Chit Chat: What are some common Production/Manufacturing Performance Goals?

Here are examples of some common production/manufacturing performance goals.

Quantity Performance Goals
  • Produce at least 12 items per shift
  • Make sure the assembly line is on an acceptable speed and runs normally more than once a month
  • Identify any barriers that stop output to be increased and find ways to remove barriers with the aid of management
  • Show progressive increases in output over a set period of time
  • Work together with the design team to come up with new products that can be assembled quickly
Quality Performance Goals
  • Make sure that 98% or more of the items you produced pass through quality testing
  • Work to ensure no more than 4% of your items require rework
  • Check all items you receive and take any products that don’t meet the standards back to the previous station
  • Stop the assembly line quickly when you receive poor quality outputs at your station
  • Document any problems in quality and use the information for troubleshooting
Safety and Environment Performance Goals
  • Conform to all safety procedures 100% of the time
  • Ensure all tools are returned to their correct place when they’re not in use
  • Leave the workstation clean and functional before you end your shift
  • Report all problems with equipment to maintenance as soon as you can
  • Put on all safety equipment 100% of the time

Friday, 26 August 2016

Striving for Faster Deliveries and Information Flow

Royale International was appointed by 7-Eleven Hong Kong in early 2015 to provide a customized logistics and distribution solution to assist with the growth of their Pick Up/Drop Off service across their store network within the territory.

With over 30 years of experience in Hong Kong, the real challenge was not so much the delivery aspect but the synchronization and security of information flow. Data transmitted between online retailers in China, the 7-Eleven logistics teams in Hong Kong, and the 7-Eleven end consumers/end buyers.

Royale International integrated Amazon Web Services - AWS with our platforms to strengthen the accuracy & efficiency of our interlinked systems to bring real-time tracking updates on over a thousand packages movements per day travelling through the network.

Details on this case study between Royale International and Amazon Web Service (AWS) can be found at the following link

Supplier networks: What are supplier associations, and the Japanese Keiretsu?

Supplier associations were formed in 1930’s and Toyota was one of the early groups to use this type of network.  The network brings together the important suppliers that the company is used so they can be coordinated and developed further. The company provides resources for production, logistics process improvements and training through the supplier association forum. The association also creates opportunities for the members to improve communication frequency and quality in order to improve operational performance.

Japanese Keiretsu is another type of network that is built upon cooperation, coordination, control and joint ownership. The network involves a lead firm being in charge of organising the activities and this is used by most companies in the electronics and automotive sectors in Japan.  There’s a tiered arrangement to the Keiretsu that means the focal firm is able to manage just the tier 1 suppliers while the tier 1 suppliers managed the tier 2 suppliers and subcontractors and so on.

Thursday, 25 August 2016

Supply base rationalisation: What are the drivers for reducing the numbers of direct suppliers?

An integrated supply chain requires firms to align their processes with the upstream and downstream partners.  Problems arise when there is a need to integrate processes with a large amount of suppliers. Limiting the supplier base is beneficial in managing high-intensity relationships.   Limiting the supplier base involves each firm being responsible for managing their portion of the inbound supply chain.

Supplier management is part of the supply chain management that requires the organisation of sourcing of materials and components from suitable suppliers. Companies need to come up with the right set of capabilities in order to reduce their number of suppliers.
A leading supplier is a concept largely accepted now. Large companies consolidate their supply base. The suppliers are responsible for managing lower tier suppliers and the buyers deal only with the top tier suppliers.

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Partnerships in the supply chain: What are partnerships, and what are their advantages and disadvantages?

Supply chain partners are all the different firms that are involved in the same network. 

Partnerships have the following characteristics:
  • They share information
  • They trust one another
  • They have mutual benefits and share risks
  • They coordinate and plan together
  • They have shared goals
  • Their corporate philosophies are compatible
Advantages of the partnership include:
Partnerships can add value and do have advantages but the advantages are set against issues that can be linked with the introduction of commitment and trusting the new partners. The advantages include reducing monitoring the soundness of the supplier, reducing negotiations, shortening lead times, product cycles and long term investment opportunities.

Disadvantages of the partnerships include:
  • Lack of accurate pricing on qualitative matters
  • Supplier opportunism
  • Risk from sharing sensitive information
  • The need to gather information on potential partners to use for decision making

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Choosing the Right Relationship: How can each type of relationship be tailored to different types of product?

There are lots of different relationships within a supply chain. Companies often have to work with multiple suppliers and each one needs to be treated individually so all needs are met. Applying appropriate practices and differentiating supplier roles results in more effective supply chain management.  

Separating suppliers into categories helps to maximise the relationship potential and build a better relationship.  The portfolio matrix can be used but it only works on the assumption that the main factors affecting the relationship are the strength of the buying company and the amount of suppliers that supply products in the short term.

The Purchase Portfolio Matrix
  • Strategic Items – items that the buyer has strength but there is limited available suppliers
  • Bottleneck Items – The buyer doesn’t have a lot of power and there aren’t a lot of alternative items available
  • Non-Critical Items – Lots of choice of suppliers
  • Leverage Items – Lots of suppliers available and a buyer that has plenty of spending power to be used to reduce prices and ask for preferential treatment

Monday, 22 August 2016

Choosing the Right Relationship: What types of supply relationships can be adopted?

There are lots of possibilities when it comes to relationship types in the supply chain. The types range from:
  • Arm’s length
  • Partnership
  • Strategic alliance
  • Joint venture
  • Vertical integration
Each of the relationships mentioned above has driving factors that motivate development and dictate the operation environment. However, the strength, closeness and duration of the relationship vary from case to case. For example, a focal firm might not have the same relationship with all of their suppliers and customers. They may need to adopt a range of different styles and choose a type of relationship which is the most effective for each partner in the supply chain. Changing the relationship types can be beneficial for obtaining lower prices or for further developments.

Saturday, 20 August 2016

Chit Chat: What are some common Customer Service Performance Goals?

Here are the examples of common customer service performance goals.

Goals to Improve Customer Satisfaction
  •  Perform customer focus groups on a monthly basis and come up with at least one tactic to improve customer service from each group.
  • Create a customer feedback system by year-end.
  • Guarantee customer complaints are handled within five working days.
  • Respond to customer complaints and enquires within 24 hours.
Goals to Improve Customer Services
  • Create a strategy that uses employee suggestion boxes to improve customer services
  • Reduce the amount of department complaints to 3%.
Service Management Goals
  • Train cash register employees to ensure their ability to deal with emergencies.
  • Guarantee all employees are able to explain different merits of products to customers.
  • Ensure all new floor staff receives full orientation within 2 days of starting work.
  • Follow up on customer service perceptions by contacting 10 customers per week.
  • Give monthly feedback to employees regarding their customer handling processes.
  • Ensure no less than three floor workers are available on each shift.
  • Train all staff in proper phone etiquette.
  • Make sure all employees are able to apply the returns and refund policy 100% of the time correctly
  • Reduce time that customers spend on hold by 10%
Customer Service Quality Goals
  • Ensure at least 95% in stock levels each month
  • Reduce wait time at the checkouts to an average of five minutes

Friday, 19 August 2016

How can integration be put into practice?

Here are some of the ways that integration can be put into practice.
  1. JIT2 works to build inter-company collaboration manually by bringing customer and supplier together as supplier-in-plant.
  2. There are three ways to implement electronic collaboration: transactional, information sharing and collaborative planning.
  3. Efficient consumer response (ECR) works to rationalise and integrate the product range, promotions, replenishment and new product introduction.
  4. Collaborative planning, forecasting and replenishment (CPFR) works to improve the efficiency of inventory management and making it more cost-effective while improving customer services and improving profitability by using technology.
  5. It is suppliers’ duty to monitor sales and inventory in the retailers’ process under Vendor managed inventory (VMI). Replenishment orders are triggered by this information. Shared data and integrated systems are required to make VMI works.
  6. Quick response (QR) logistics include time-based mapping and adopt a total supply chain view in order to follow the sales trends.

Thursday, 18 August 2016

What are the benefits of integration in the supply chain?

Here are some of the benefits to be gained from integrating the supply chain.

  • Coordination is required to integrate the supply chain, both up and downstream. Rules are set for coordination and the material and information flows are established in practice.
  • Research shows that improved coordination between logistics and marketing brings positive results and improvements in cycle times, order to delivery lead times, inventories and the availability of products.
  • Benefits of electronic collaborations include more sales by improved availability of products for the consumers. Total costs are reduced in areas such as inventory and waste and capacities are reduced due to less uncertainty. The production of shared objectives and plans results in greater commitment between trading partners.
  • There are together and separate tensions displayed in the closest supply relationships.  The separateness is especially noticeable during times of high pressure that are caused by logistic failures and remedial work. Downward cost pressures on suppliers are found in the auto industry and thus limit the progress in strengthening the relationship.

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Managing supply chain relationships: How can broader-based relationships be formed between trading partners in the supply chain? –Part 2

Factors in forming supply chain relationships

There are nine factors used for the analysis of the customer-supplier relationships.
  1. Identifying the order winners – such as price, range of products, technology advantage or product quality
  2. Criteria of choosing sourcing – such as auctions, sole source or competitive tenders
  3. Nature of electronic collaboration – sharing information, collaboration or transactional
  4. Attitude towards capacity planning – who is the one who bear the responsibility or is it shared between both?
  5. Call-Off needs – Will the customer change the schedules without notice; require JIT delivery for a set time period?
  6. Price negotiations – will the buyer impose the price reductions or will it be a joint decision?
  7. Product quality management – Will the customer help to improve the process capabilities?
  8. Research and development management – Will the customer or the supplier impose new designs? Is the supplier involved in product development?
  9. Pressure levels – Will the customer put pressure on the supplier to avoid complacency?

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Managing supply chain relationships: How can a broader-based relationships be formed between trading partners in the supply chain? – Part 1

Traditionally, supplier and customer relationships have been limited and mainly only existed in between the buyer of the customer and the salesperson of the supplier. Information systems and other functions have been kept separated. This form of relationship is known as bow tie and is totally opposite to a multiple contact model called diamond. In this version, more contacts are encouraged between all different functions and there are active relationship management and supplier development processes.  The multi-level connections between the players in the supply chain and a high level of electronic collaborations are strengthened.

The logistic disciplines give a focus for the coordination that other supply chain relationship aspects revolve. It is important to manage the physical flow of products and make any necessary adjustments to remove the risk of failures, such as product quality of process breakdowns. This encourages the joint work of the partners.

Physical flow management requires extensive coordination mechanisms between the supply partners and senior managers often neglect this. Coordination is viewed as tension between the mechanisms that bring partners together. It emphasizes the benefits of gaining shared success as well as drives the partners apart.  Separateness may be the results of failure to coordinate or focus on the requirement of internal organisation.

Monday, 15 August 2016

Quick response (QR): How can capabilities across the supply chain be aligned to meet end customer demand?

QR, quick response logistics is another application of lean thinking and just-in-time and is used to meet the demands of the end customer. QR is an approach that is used to meet the customer demand by ensuring the right quantity; quality and variety of goods are sent to the right place at the right time and at the right price. It’s an approach that began life in the American textile and apparel industry as a reaction to the uncertainty the overseas competitors created.

It’s necessary to view the entire supply chain of an industry. Using this wide perspective it’s possible to gain an understanding of the overall performance along with the causes of problems that affect the performance efficiency. It also opens up abilities to find areas of opportunity for improvement.

To understand the overall performance processes need to be mapped and the raw materials converted into final products. The process is assessed in order to determine how effective it is. Areas of weakness can be spotted and new actions taken to remove the problems and come up with new processes with less wastage.

Saturday, 13 August 2016

Chit Chat: What are the 10 Tips for Setting Performance Goals?

Here are our 10 tips we recommend using for setting performance goals.
  1. Each employee needs to have individual performance goals, even for those employees with identical jobs to their colleagues.  Each employee brings unique skills and abilities and has different needs to of their peers.
  2. Creating a dialogue between the employee and the manager is vital and perhaps more important than the actual final performance goals that are created. The process and the goals give each employee a sense of their contribution to the company.
  3. Goals should be measurable but they also need to be meaningful. Recognise that some goals are hard to measure but they remain important and therefore they need to be included.
  4. Managers and the employees need to both share the same understandings of the goals and how they are vital to the company.
  5. Employees need to be able to measure the success of their own goals as well as the manager. Discussions must remain open throughout the entire year to ensure barriers to achieving the goal are removed.
  6. The employees’ work unit needs to have set goals for the year before working on the individual employee performance goals is created. The goals are then aligned with the goals of the work unit.
  7. The performance goals need to specify the exact results of the goals expected from the employee rather than how to achieve the desired goals.
  8. Use the goals to guide performance as that will remove the need for constant evaluation.
  9. Work out the important goals rather than wasting time and effort on multiple smaller goals, as there could be thousands for each employee. Limit the goals to around 10 for each individual.
  10. Remember that the goals are not set in stone. The workplace changes frequently and goals can be changed to meet with the new environments and circumstances.

Friday, 12 August 2016

Vendor-managed inventory: How can suppliers help to reduce waste in the customer’s process?

VMI, vendor managed inventory is a method that is used to inventory and order fulfilment. The supplier and not the customer are responsible for the management and the replenishment of the inventory.  It is the responsibility of the supplier to monitor the sales and inventory and they use this information to trigger the replenishment orders.

The suppliers are the ones who track the product sales and inventory levels of their customers. They only send goods when stocks run low, removing a lot of waste from the supply chain in the process. The supplier makes decisions based on the current inventory level and the demand and takes into account the lead time that it will take to resupply their customers. It requires a stable business system and teamwork between the manufacturer and the manufacturer if it’s to work effectively. Both parties can gain multiple benefits using VMI that include access to customer sales data, data on the inventory levels at the customer and reduced waste in the customer process.

Thursday, 11 August 2016

Collaborative planning, forecasting and replenishment: How can collaboration be extended to strategic as well as to operational levels?

CPFR, collaborative planning, forecasting and replenishment works to improve the collaboration between the buyer and supplier. The purpose of this is to improve customer service and make the inventory management more efficient.

There’s a nine step business model that has been developed to give an insight into the significant amount of effort that is necessary from both the supplier and the customer.

  1. Development of the front-end agreement
  2. Creating joint business plans
  3. Creating individual sales forecasts
  4. Identifying the exceptions to the sales forecasts that have been created
  5. Resolving the exception items
  6. Creation of the order forecast
  7. Identifying any exceptions in the order forecast
  8. Resolving the exceptions in the order forecast
  9. Generating orders
CPFR is the focus on the process of forecasting supply and demand. This is achieved by pulling together multiple plans and projections from the customer and the supplier and synchronising them. It requires extensive support from internet based products and therefore there may be extensive changes in the key business processes that are currently used.

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Efficient consumer response (ECR): How can collaboration be extended across the supply chain to focus on meeting consumer demand?

Today we’re continuing our look at how collaboration can be extended over a supply chain to meet customer demand.

The enabling technologies are a driver of ECR and this is what makes it work. The technologies include scanning data, data mining and data warehousing. EDI is a good example of how trading data are achieved across multiple supply chain partners before starting business. EDI allows for forecasting data to be transmitted across the supply chain. The types of data that need to be shared include:

  1.  Demand information
  2. Consumption information
  3. Sales information
  4. Cash flow
  5. Finished goods stocks
  6. WIP stocks
  7. Delivery and output status

    The ECR initiative includes sharing information effectively, automated order generation and bar coding.

    Tuesday, 9 August 2016

    Efficient consumer response (ECR): How can collaboration be extended across the supply chain to focus on meeting consumer demand?

    ECR was established as a grocery industry initiative. It stands for efficient consumer response and its purpose is to rationalise and integrate product assortment, new product development, replenishment and promotion over the entire supply chain. 

    The aim is to meet the changing demands of the end customer using a collaborative supply chain. The benefits are enhanced effectiveness of merchandising, supply chain admin and the inventory flow. Over the next few days, we’re going to look at some of the ways ECR can be extended across the supply chain.

    Category Management
    Demand management principles are important to supply chain and category management is now extremely popular. The aim is to prevent stock outs and improve the relationship between suppliers and retailers. Category management works to balance the product volume and variety for retailers.  The following capabilities are the focus on category management:
    • Establishing infrastructure
    • Optimising introductions
    • Optimising assortment
    • Optimising promotions
    Continuous Replenishment
    Continuous replenishment provides suppliers and retailers, the chance to manage inventory more efficiently. There are six stages in the product replenishment process:
    1. Joint inventory management
    2. Cross-dock operations
    3. Continuous replenishment
    4. Effective logistic strategies
    5. Quick response

    Monday, 8 August 2016

    Supply chain integration: How can we integrate internally, externally and electronically? - Electronic Integration

    Electronic integration is used in the supply chain. EDI systems are not generally compatible with each other, so it’s necessary for the use of new technologies that offer connectivity and ease of use.  

    Supply chains need to be visible for those seeking a competitive advantage. Information technology allows companies to work together using platform independent communications that are used as a cross company interface and that allow electronic commerce. It’s efficient and ensures firms are connected, allowing for relationships to be built with manufacturers, distributors and suppliers. This is a cost effective and easy way of connecting all partners in the supply chain.

    It’s now easy for trading partners to integrate electronically in the following ways:

    • Transactional
    • Information sharing
    • Collaborative planning

    Saturday, 6 August 2016

    Chit Chat: What is the Goal Setting Process?

    Here are the basic steps involved in setting an employee’s goals.

    • Preparation and prework takes place many weeks in advance. The manager explains the goal setting process to the employee, discussing the purpose and benefits involved. The manager and the employee need to review the goals of the work along with the organisation involved and how the goals can be achieved before the goal setting meeting is held. Many employees are able to come up with goals to be discussed in the meeting.
    • At the meeting the manager will explain the purpose of the meeting and go over the purposes of the process briefly once more. The work goals are then outlined and there’s an opportunity for the manager and the employee to review the job description and make any necessary changes at this point. Manager will ask the employee to define the critical work activities, goals and criteria. The goals are then set together and priorities are discussed. Now is the time to discuss anything the employee may require in order to meet these goals, such as new tools and other resources not currently in place.
    • Action planning is the next step for goals that are complex. The employee needs to develop action plans and discuss them with the manager a few weeks before the goal setting meeting. Reviews and follow ups are ongoing and communication continues throughout.

    Friday, 5 August 2016

    Supply chain integration: How can we integrate internally, externally and electronically? - Inter-Company Integration

    The starting point for the integration in the supply chain begins within the company. Internal integration leads to broader integration over the supply chain and can’t be achieved if the companies involved are unable to integrate internally.

    Integration can be performed manually using a supplier in the plant, who is an employee of the supplier who resides full time in the purchasing offices of the customer. They place orders with their own company using the customer scheduling systems that are in place. They also do all the material planning for the materials that are supplied by the company.

    The benefits of streamlining using a supplier in plant and using them as part of the production planning process include:

    • 50% improvement in on time deliveries, damages and shortages
    • A 6% reduction in material costs
    • 26% improvement in the use of equipment
    • Reducing inventory holdings
    These benefits show how collaborating and integrating benefits the supply chain as a whole.

    Thursday, 4 August 2016

    Supply chain integration: How can we integrate internally, externally and electronically? – Internal Integration

    The aim of the supply chain is to meet the needs of the end customer, beginning at the point of sale and working back up the chain in order to deliver the correct product to the right destination at the right time and of the right quality. There are four factors to be used in this type of supply chain:

    • Using short cycle production to produce each product that needs to be produced each day
    • Using real time communications with suppliers using integrated systems and building long term relationships with suppliers
    • Obtaining demand data from the closest point to the end customer, such as the cash register
    • Working together with all supply chain partners and aligning metrics that are focused on delivering to the end customer

    These principles require the use of internal and external integration.  It’s necessary in order to coordinate the supply chain and create rules for the flow of materials and information in practice. Evidence shows that upstream and downstream integration results in improved supply chain performance as a whole.

    Wednesday, 3 August 2016

    What is JIT and lean thinking, and how does it apply to logistics?

    JIT stands for Just in Time and it’s a philosophy of doing the simple things correctly and always working to improve them. JIT in logistics involves many factors that are focused on reducing any delays and reducing inventory levels.

    There are two key questions that need to be addressed in order to reduce delay and inventory. The key questions are ‘how many?’ and ‘when’.  JIT is used to help answer these questions as it reduces the sources of waste in logistics. Other contributions include reducing changeover times and the use of paperless systems of material control.

    Material control approaches can be made more responsive by using the JIT principle. Batch sizes can be reduced along with lead times and reorder quantities. JIT pull scheduling is excellent for control and MRP for planning.
    Lean thinking words to reduce waste from four areas:
    •  Identifying the value stream using time based mapping
    • Make the product flow through the supply network with JIT principles
    • Specifying the value from the perspective of the customer
    • Allowing customer to pull the product by using pull scheduling
    Lean thinking is focused on how seven wastes can support lean principles. It follows the principles of JIT and extends them into product and facility design.

    Tuesday, 2 August 2016

    How is material flow planned and controlled in the supply chain?

    Here are four steps that show how material flow is planned and controlled in the supply chain.

    1. Three time periods are used in the detailed planning and control systems that have been developed in manufacturing. The time periods are long term, medium term and short term. (MPC systems).
    2. Inter-linked modules are used in the focal firm game plan. They include front end modules such as resource planning and sales, engine modules such as materials and capacity planning and back-end modules, the detailed planning and so on. 
    3. Independent demand goods in the supply chain have to be managed using order point methods such as EOQ. Reviews are required periodically for variable size orders.
    4. The MPC systems link the firms and therefore there’s a strong need for the management of detail. Inaccurate exchange of data causes problems such as the bullwhip effect.

    Monday, 1 August 2016

    Lean Thinking: What are the principles of lean thinking, and how can they be applied to cutting waste out of supply chains? – Part 2

    Here are three principles of lean thinking that can be used to remove waste in the supply chain.

    Order to Replenishment
    The time it takes to replenish the products that have been sold is the concern of order to replenishment. Lean thinking works to manage the order cycle, replacing only the products that have been sold within fast replenishment lead times.

    Order to production
    This is a series of steps that are used when responding to an order, to organise the production and deliver the product to the end customer. It’s a make to order process that can be worked down the supply chain or maintained within the company.

    Product Development
    New products and service development needs to include lean thinking in the process. It can make development more effective ensuring the products have features and attributes that are desirable and ensure they are achieved on time. Lean thinking in product development also makes the process more efficient and that the products are developed to cost.