The term lean involves an essential change that emphasizes elimination of waste (non-value added activities) and delivers quality products. Johnson and Johnson (J&J) implemented lean manufacturing successfully, which resulted into a substantial reduction in waste to its manufacturing plant. The company is now gearing to extend the same success to its supply chain, which with the aim of reducing waste. According to the director of supply chain for medical devices and diagnostics group, J&J experience a lot of waste during the movement and handling processes. He believes that implementing lean throughout the supply chain will unleash real opportunities, leading cost reduction and broad-based value to customers. .
Johnson & Johnson; lean processes main goal is to eliminate supply chain related waste in the following areas: transportation, motion, waiting, defects, over-production, inventory, over-processing, and talent. J&J has a well-documented success story on implementation of lean in manufacturing and want to replicate the same to its supply chain. J&J intends to train its employees on lean principles and DMAIC model. The acronym DMAIC stands for: Define the Opportunity, Measure performance, Analyze Opportunity, Improve performance and Control performance. The company intends to align the workers in a position to implement waste reduction technologies in the entire supply chain. .
J&J lean supply chain process is already in progress, and the company has recorded measurable results. The company has registered considerable gain in its productivity within the first one year. New products have been launched without altering the existing infrastructure; processes are fast and efficient thanks to waste elimination. The lean supply chain in J&J is in track; the company is generating leaders who will transform the department by applying lean thinking in all transactions. .
The Lean and Six Sigma represent a combination of two very powerful business improvement systems; they are being applied across the service sector as well as manufacturing sectors.