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DevFactory Asks, “Why Lean Manufacturing?”

DevFactory is not a manufacturing company, but it is a company that borrows the best ideas from the factory mentality. In particular, the company has adopted some of the most tried and true methods of lean manufacturing. For companies—whether factories or not—that have never before encountered lean manufacturing, this concept can be a revelation.

The best way to understand lean manufacturing is to compare it to other forms of production. For many years, manufacturing companies have created products in anticipation of finding a market for them. Manufacturing processes have been driven by sales forecasts and product maximization efforts. Companies have buffered their inventories to ensure they are able to meet any sudden flux in demand.

Many manufacturers, as well as companies like DevFactory, find lean manufacturing to be a more prudent model. Lean manufacturing is based on the notion that production can be—and really should be—driven by demand from consumers. Instead of producing what a company hopes to sell, or simply producing as much as it can possibly make, lean manufacturing teaches that companies should produce enough to meet the actual demand they are receiving.

To put it most succinctly, lean manufacturing is all about manufacturing what the customer wants, with much shorter lead times. Instead of pushing out as much product as possible, lean manufacturing companies pull products through a system designed to keep up with consumer demand.

It is not hard to see why a company like DevFactory might wish to borrow some of the basic concepts of lean manufacturing. The benefits of lean manufacturing are numerous, and they include:

  • Lean manufacturing companies are capable of producing high-quality products, both economically and in lower volumes.
  • Lean manufacturing organizations can also bring these products to market much more quickly than mass producers can.
  • In fact, a lean producing organization can make twice as much product with twice the quality, at half the cost and with a fraction of the normal work-in-process inventory.
  • Lean manufacturing principles allow companies to operate the most efficient businesses possible, with the smallest amount of waste.

 

The Challenges of Going Lean

If lean manufacturing is so advantageous, why don’t more companies seek to implement lean principles? While companies like DevFactory benefit greatly from lean concepts, there are also some challenges to lean implementation. A company cannot simply elect to go lean one day; it takes time and real commitment.

Successful lean manufacturers understand that “lean” is not just a catchphrase, but also a corporate vision that touches all aspects of the company. Lean manufacturing notions touch everything from product design and manufacturing to marketing, management, and beyond. Even suppliers and trading partners have to be engaged in order for lean manufacturing to be effective.

 

The Long History of Lean

With that said, companies have been adopting lean ideals for decades now—so there is no reason to think that lean manufacturing is impossible to attain. Lean production has been around nearly as long as mass production itself, standing as one of the many ways in which companies have come to terms with mass production techniques.

Henry Ford is often credited as being the man who first implemented lean production techniques. His use of the assembly line, in the production of the Model T, brought his company higher productivity, but at lower costs. Many businesses, such as DevFactory, have sought to replicate this basic formula, in Ford’s wake.

 

Lean Manufacturing and Your Company

The next question is what does lean manufacturing mean for your company? Why should companies pursue it? Why have companies like DevFactory made lean manufacturing such a high priority?

Lean manufacturing involves identifying and eliminating any steps in the design, production, and management processes that do not add value to the consumer. This ideal can be broken down into the following principles:

  • Specify value, in the eye of the customer.
  • Identify the value stream and remove any source of waste.
  • Make value flow at the pull of customers and clients.
  • Involve and empower all employees and team members.
  • Continuously improve in the pursuit of true perfection.

 

Lean Manufacturing is a Process

It cannot be overstated that lean manufacturing is a paradigm shift. It is a whole new way for companies to understand their practices and procedures. It is not something that can be simply mandated from the boardroom, any more than it can be rolled out in the span of a day or a week. Going lean means getting the entire company united behind a shared vision, and working toward that vision each and every day.

There are challenges to address along the way, then. For many companies—including DevFactory—these efforts are met with numerous rewards.

Post Brothers Apartments Explains What to Look for in Eco-Friendly Living

When looking for an environmentally friendly apartment, there are several features on which a prospective renter should focus, according to a representative from Post Brothers Apartments, a company owning and managing seven environmentally conscious apartment complexes in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. There are several different features within an apartment that could be altered to be more environmentally friendly. Apartment complexes built to be environmentally conscious will be LEED certified; however, regular complexes may also feature some of these environmentally friendly properties.

The appliances should be the first feature to consider when looking for a greener home. An individual should ask the apartment manager about the energy efficiency of the various appliances, like the refrigerator, dish washer, and washer and dryer. When an appliance is energy efficient, it uses less energy. Many of the best energy efficient appliances have an Energy Star label, making it easy to spot. To save even more energy, the light fixtures should use compact fluorescent bulbs rather than the old incandescent bulbs. Read more

David Shavolian Tells Why Child Poverty Affects Everyone

David Shavolian’s family has been working with the Ohr-Hasholom orphanage in Israel for quite a few years. The orphanage, which now provides shelter, food, clothing, and education to 100 to upwards of 150 children in Israel, regardless of background or how they came to the orphanage, offers its inhabitants a second chance, giving them the tools they need to break the cycle of poverty and become well-adjusted adults. While the work they do speaks for itself, Shavolian, New York City real estate agent and expert, has a special place in his heart for the orphanage due to his own surprising history.

David Shavolian came to the United States in 1986. Born an Iranian Jew, at just thirteen years old he was forced to flee his home in Tehran, Iran’s capital, to escape persecution for his faith. Travelling by camel he made it to Pakistan, where he acquired a visa to Austria and finally the United States, five months after leaving Iran. Speaking not a word of English and with no money to his name, he managed to make his way from an impoverished Iranian Jew in America to a successful New York City businessman.

For many other children, however, escaping the bonds of poverty is not possible without intervention. Shavolian, after all, had a father in America to help him navigate his new world. The orphans at Ohr-Hasholom and others like them do not. Read more

American International Medical University on Empathy

While everyone wants a doctor who is highly skilled in his area of medicine, most patients also need and appreciate a physician with a human touch, according to American International Medical University, or AIMU.  Compassion and empathy are values that parents try to instill in their children, and they are just as critical to people working in the medical profession. The university supports this goal and has woven these values into their coursework for future physicians and nurses in their desire to offer a comprehensive medical education.

Modern medical advancements are astonishing. Technology has made it possible to do surgery in utero, and robots have made remote procedures possible. According to the American Medical Association, nothing can replace the importance of the communication between doctor and patient, and a warm and concerned bedside manner.

Most students enter medical school with a sincere desire to help their fellow human beings. The rigorous demands and competitive nature of medical school, along with specific pressures unique to each individual, often take a toll on the student over time. One study revealed a decline in the level of empathy by the third year of their education. That’s one reason it is critical to incorporate into every medical program ongoing coaching and mentoring along with coursework that teaches and fosters patient empathy. Read more

Johnson Becker Tells How to Prepare for Product Liability Suits

Most of us are familiar with the stories of individuals who are injured due to defective products, items that prove shoddy in their design or their manufacture and thus yield dangerous consequences; according to the law firm Johnson Becker, however, this hardly means that all product liability cases are slam dunks. Sometimes well-intentioned lawyers mount product liability cases that result in justice being served on behalf of their clients. In many other cases, though, these suits go nowhere.

But what is the difference between a successful product liability case and one that falls flat? According to the attorneys at Johnson Becker, the answer often lies in preparation. To win the cases, the legal team needs to be fully prepared with documentation and evidence showing that the product in question really is faulty and that the consequences of that faultiness really are grim. Read more

Rich Gorman Shares Social Marketing Basics for Real Estate Pros

According to online marketing guru Rich Gorman, the state of marketing has changed considerably for members of the real estate profession. There was a time when the best way for an agent to advertise his or her services and listings was to take out space in the catalogs and flyers that consumers see distributed outside supermarkets—or perhaps even to get placement in the local Yellow Pages. While some behind-the-times agents continue to prioritize these methodologies, the reality is that, in today’s world, the best and really the only way for realtors to effectively engage consumers is via social media marketing.

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