What are the 7 wastes in Lean?
Lean implementation focuses on eliminating the 7 wastes (now expanded to 8 wastes) as identified in any process. These are the wastes of: over-production, waiting, transportation, processing itself, stocks [inventories], motion, and making defective products. These wastes are universal – they can be found both in Lean Enterprise at the shop floor level, as well as in the Lean Office (even at the C-suite level).
The purpose of Kaizen is to eliminate waste, or muda. These 7 wastes have been identified and listed below (graphic courtesy of Wikipedia)
Some folks remember them as the mnemonic “TIM WOOD” – Transportation, Inventories, Motion, Waiting, overproduction, over-processing, and defects.
Or are there 8 wastes?
The 8th waste added is non-used employee talent (T), so that the 8 wastes can be easily remembered via the mnemonic “DOWNTIME” (Defective Production,Overproduction, Waiting, Non-used Employee Talent (the 8th form), Transportation, Inventory, Motion, and Excessive (Over) Processing)
By working to eliminate these wastes, an organization can achieve considerable improvements in their operating efficiency.