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Careers That Require Lean Manufacturing Training

written by: Cyndi Root•edited by: Michele McDonough•updated: 7/31/2010

Lean manufacturing is a process-oriented focus, participated in by the whole organization from human resources to production worker. It seeks to streamline buying inventory, designing components and products, and producing goods. Workers are encouraged to participate in making better processes.

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    Some Background on Lean Manufacturing

    Lean Manufacturing Skills The lean manufacturing strategy uses teams, cells or units to produce components or products. Careers that require lean manufacturing training are plentiful as manufacturing makes up a large part of any vital economic system. Preventing waste and streamlining processes is part of the company’s ongoing decision making process.

    Each employee, every task and all inventory are vital pieces of the whole. Employee involvement is encouraged, cross-training is expected and communication is vital to achieve business goals. This flexibility allows companies to adjust and adapt quickly to supply and demand changes.

    Image Credit: sxc.hu/jc_2086

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    Industrial Revolution

    The invention of the internal combustion engine and electrical power generation furthered the industrial revolution by leaps and bounds. Industry had previously made many mechanical, electrical and technological advances. However, mass production enabled by motor engines and electricity vaulted industry forward.

    Frederick W.Taylor was an efficiency expert and management consultant and was one of the first to define and promote efficiency in the workplace. He published a book in 1911 called The Principles of Scientific Managment. Lean manufacturing principles have built on some of his principles. New strategies for efficient production will evolve as economic realities change.

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    Positions Requiring Lean Training

    Assemblers and Fabricators: Employees in these positions cut, align, construct, assemble, rebuild, fasten, install, fit, weld, rivet, adjust, build, structure, read text, diagrams and blueprints, calibrate, monitor and inform designs for electrical and electronic equipment and electromechanical machinery. Workers use and make sensing equipment, resistors, transformers, generators, electric motors, computers, engines, turbines, generators, air­planes, buses, heating and ventilation systems. Designers and engineers look to assemblers for practical experience and input to build prototypes or test products.

    Designers and Engineers: These professionals create products or parts, redesign systems and work to improve product efficiency and manufacturing reliability. They develop machining processes in support of existing and new products and are open to feedback from assemblers and production workers.

    Buyers and Purchasing Agents: Defines strategies and timing expectations for procurement of best quality and value inventory while minimizing purchasing cost and inventory maintenance costs. Collaborates with functional teams such as designers, production and management.

    Production and Facility Managers: Meet quantity and quality goals and objectives of the company to ensure product quality and maximum output, production efficiency, safety and worker satisfaction. Plans and ensures maximum efficiency of workspace, production, how tasks are assigned and performed.

    Human Resources: Actively participates in organizational effectiveness from recruiting to training and development. Retention of worker assets include administration of wage and salary, performance, safety, wellness and benefits administration.

    Analysts and Planners: Minimize project risks, ensure overall project planning and execution, communicate with designers, production and management to plan, schedule, initiate and execute processes, plans and budgets.

    Executives, Directors and Consultants: Analyze and plan with many interests in mind besides one product, design, or project or department. The director of the human resources department may be vitally involved in discussion with top executives in the company in talks about the labor supply or initiating training for a new project. Other careers that require lean manufacturing training are consultants, who may be asked for advice on overall company issues, specific projects or human resources.