Lean Operations - Dell

2583 Words Nov 29th, 2010 11 Pages
Lean Operations Today - Case of Dell Computers Co. -


Instructor: C. Liassides
Thessaloniki, 18/5/10
City College, Business 2ab
Spring Semester
Lean Operations Today - Case of Dell Computers Co. -

A corporation is a living organism; it has to continue to shed its skin. Methods have to change. Focus has to change. Values have to change. The sum total of those changes is transformation. ~Andrew Grove

There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all. ~Peter F. Drucker


As the lean manufacturing philosophy has gained a lot of attention in the modern industry, this paper will analyze some basic concepts of lean operations and the
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Therefore, based on the success of processes used at Toyota, Womack and Jones (1996), proposes five key principles of the lean enterprise approach (see appendix, Figure 1) (Carnes and Hedin, 2005). The fist principle is called Value Stream Mapping (VSM). It is the process of “mapping the material and information flows of all components and sub-assemblies in a value stream that includes manufacturing, suppliers and distribution to the customer” (Seth and Gupta, 2005; p. 44). Once, we have mapped all wasteful activities[1] we can start the process of elimination of those activities in every value stream (Percy and Rich, 2004). The third principle is making the value flow run constantly (Carnes and Hedin, 2005). In other words, avoiding batch production and inventory queues by keeping things moving. According to Percy and Rich (2004), this is usually done by using modular designs, cellular working, general purpose machines, quick changeovers, multi-skilled operators, etc. The forth principle is basing flow on customer demand (pull). This principle is founded on the Kanban or differently, Work Flow Control system which states that materials are released into production only when the customer demands them ( i.e. only when needed) (Percy and Rich, 2004). Finally, the fifth principle implies continuous improvement and pursue of perfection (Carnes and Headin, 2004). However, according to Professional Engineering (2005) this is just the
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