Toyota 's Production System : A Global Model For Efficient Auto Manufacturing Through The Use Of Operations Management

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Toyota Motor Company has risen to become the global model for efficient auto manufacturing through the use of operations management. Since the late 1980’s, The Toyota Production System has been employing several techniques such as hi-tech automation, line segmentation, and inter-segment buffers to reach optimal efficiency.
The Toyota Production System is built around two key elements that maximize efficiency. The first, is that only items that will be sold are produced. The second is the use of a ‘Just-in-time’ system that ensures smooth, uninterrupted processing. Toyota Production System regards work-in-progress stockpiles as a waste of time and space that often times cover up inefficiencies in the production process. Problems with the just-in-time system become more apparent when work-in-progress stocks are reduced, allowing for problems to be more easily identified and solved. To solve these problems, Toyota embraces the philosophy of Kaizen, which means, ‘continuous improvement’, where employees on the production line are encouraged to be the ones to come up with solutions.
In the early 1990’s Toyota was having trouble retaining assembly line workers because of the stressful, physical nature of the job. A high-tech approach was implemented at Tahara plant in 1991, but was deemed too costly to be used at all production plants. Instead, a system, pioneered through the Kaizen philosophy, was devised to continue using humans as the primary workers, while introducing a

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