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The Toyota Production System - Article Example

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This paper will review the article “The Toyota Production System” by the Public Affairs Division of the Toyota Motor Corporation.The main issue then is that Toyota needed to become more competitive in producing global cars, but in a more organized manner…
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The Toyota Production System

Download file to see previous pages... This paper will review the article “The Toyota Production System” by the Public Affairs Division of the Toyota Motor Corporation (2003). The main issue then is that Toyota needed to become more competitive in producing global cars, but in a more organized manner. This section proceeds to the background of the issue. The manufacturing industry is a highly competitive sector that thrives in constant innovation. Toyota discovered that quality management is one of the keys to global competitiveness, and that its management can formulate the TP, which will be its driver of global strengths. TPS relies on years of trial and error, until it has been perfected and applied by Toyota worldwide. The trial and error system means that the company learned from actual mistakes of the system and developed realistic solutions. The TPS is the brainchild of Taiichi Ohno. The main manufacturing system then was the push system, where manufacturers made whatever they thought was in demand. This created a great deal of waste and inventory, however, because real demand tends to fluctuate. Ohno, through repeated trial and error, changed the push to a "pull" system that disabled the factory from making unnecessary items. The pull system consisted of tools, including the kanban (information card), andon (display board), and poka yoke (error prevention). Minoura asserted that only when these "loose collection of techniques" were consolidated into a fully-fledged system that the company was able to deploy TPS across its manufacturing plants. The major points of the article are that the TPS can identify wastes in the production process and optimize the scheduling process, training people are fundamental to achieving quality products and processes, and good supplier-manufacturer relations are critical to an efficient production system. The article highlights the importance of just-in-time production that begins with cutting the lead-time for making things. Minoura argued that it is important to cut processes that do not add value. He noted that many delays come from transferring one part to another and so if it is possible to eradicate transfers, this greatly reduced lead-time. The TPS is also about developing people. The article argues the value of human development to TPS, because people are the ones making products. It asserts the importance of training people to following rules and regulations of kaizen so that Toyota's monozukuri (making things) can be attained. Minoura also underscores that localization or genchika is important. It is about promoting the attitude of TPS ingrained into the local employees of the company. Finally, suppliers are called to think like car manufacturers, so that they can also cut costs and customize their products. Toyota maintains good supplier relations to attain cost advantages and preserve trust, which is critical to the just-in-time system. Hence, TPS is truly a comprehensive approach to manufacturing, as it merges people, technology, management, and systems thinking under one umbrella of total quality management. In conclusion, this article suggested the use of lean manufacturing in reducing lead time and generating a climate for developing a learning organization. I believe that lean manufacturing will truly have an impact on lead time, because its diverse tools and practices are crucial in identifying wasteful processes. These tools also stress the value of correcting mistakes as they occur and incorporating thinking when solving problems at individual work levels. Furthermore, TPS is not only a technological system with information system dimensions, but also a people management system dimension. The ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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This essay saved me today. I liked the style. It was very useful for my design & technology course.
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