Elimination Of Waste And A Supply Chain Context

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Elimination of waste in a supply chain context

Amy Newell
212043

EMBA 704
Dr Charles Thornton
Introduction
Various definitions of the term ‘Supply Chain’ exist and with differing Interpretations and understanding. As stated in Horch (2009), many regard the supply chain as combination of inbound materials, manufacturing finished products, inventories and distribution. Pioneering work which led to the creation of Lean originated In the 1970s when Toyota Motor Company completed a productive system with a distinct competitive advantage known as the ‘Toyota Production System’ (Leseure, 2010). Lean Production involves a disciplined approach to manufacturing (Waller, 2003). A core concept of lean philosophy is waste elimination. ReVelle (2001) defines waste as “…any activity that absorbs resources such as cost and time but adds no value”. Waste can be classified in numerous ways. Organisations reduce and eliminate waste in their operations through waste management. Companies incur wastes in a supply chain through internal or external processes. Causes of waste in a supply chain context include: forecasting errors, inefficient processes, communication breakdowns and lack of responsiveness. Money and time wasted through production and supply chain processes can be reduced by the optimisation of supply chain activities. In order to successfully eliminate waste, organisations must develop lean supply chain management methods and apply them in supply operations (Albu and
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