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Lean Manufacturing Principles and Tools




Lean is a manufacturing philosophy based in the principle of no waste and  involves all aspects related to productivity and economics. In short Lean Manufacturing can be summarized in these simple principles:


1- No waste on human resources, money, time or other resources.

2- All actions must produce added value.

3- All work must be measurable, standardized, recorded,verifiable and constantly improved

4- All employees in the organization must perform a productive activity


Lean manufacturing has identified seven causes of waste, and make use of many other disciplines to achieve lean results. Today no organization could be successful without the implementation of at least some of  these tools, although exist many more, these are some of the most recurred simple and effective.



                            Please click on the title to go the corresponding tutorial



The Seven Causes of Waste

Define and analyze the most common causes of waste in order to correct these waste forms.


Provide the guidelines and philosophy to achieve a clean and organized work area in any department.


The 5 Why’s

This is a systematic yet simple tool for the analysis of problems root causes, it can be used together with other lean tools such as the cause effect diagram


The 4 M’s +1

Man, Machine, Materials, Method + Management

This is another methodology tool for problems solutions based on the category source such as personnel, machines and equipment, materials, the methods used and the management policies


Cause Effect or Fish Bone Diagram

Diagram for the visual representation of the sequential root causes


The 4W’s +H+W

What, Where, Who, When + How + with What

This tool can be used for planning a project or to find a solution to any given problem  



Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control

Tool for the analysis of problems root causes, control and prevention



Failure Mode and Effect Analysis

Tool to find problem root causes by assigning different grades of severity, occurrence and the resultant effects, it works fine fas a preventive or corrective tool


Project Charter Template and Example

Use this template sample to plan and control your project


Value Stream Mapping

Learn the basis about how to implement a Value Stream Mapping project