Eliminate the Waste of Transportation

Posted by on May 6, 2011 in Lean | 0 comments

The waste of transportation is the unnecessary movement of parts, materials or information from one process to another, usually to a storage or staging area.  Poor layouts and disorganization are common causes of transportation waste.  The more movement of parts the more likely they are to get damaged, which create other forms of waste.
In a manufacturing setting, examples include storing raw materials and finished goods in warehouses, and in staging areas between processes.
In a service environment transportation waste is the unnecessary and non-value added movement of people, goods, and information in order to fulfill the customer’s request.
Examples from the healthcare industry include samples and specimens needing analysis travel excessive distances to reach labs and within labs, and patients  moved excessively for testing and treatment.
Other examples include:
  • Excessive e-mail attachments
  • Multiple hand-offs
  • Multiple approvals
  • Files moving from one location to another
  • Multiple movements of cash
  • Couriering mail, materials, etc.

Ways to eliminate the waste of transportation include:
  • Align successive processes as close to one another as possible
  • Reduce the number of hard copy documents
  • Eliminate any temporary storage or stocking locations

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