Line Balancing - What is it ?
Here is a simple definition and example of line balancing :
Everyone is doing the same amount of work
Doing the same amount of work to customer requirement
Variation is ‘smoothed’
No one overburdened
No one waiting
Everyone working together in a BALANCED fashion
Here we see operator number 1 over-producing, thus creating the other 6 wastes.
We simply re-balance the work content (Re distribute some of the work), using a Yamazumi board as it is often known
In the example shown above, the Yamazumi exercise looks incredibly simple - So why doesn't everyone do it ?
There are two vital pre requisites to balancing a line which must be in place before a yamazumi exercise can take place.
Takt Time & Standard Work
Takt Time is the production "Drumbeat" based on customer demand
Whether you use Standard work combination tables, Standard work instruction sheets or any other Standard work documentation will depend upon the type of work involved
Standard Work instruction sheets provide a detailed description of HOW to do a particular step of a work operation. These provide a standard method of carrying out any particular task ensuring each task is repeatable and reproducible.
Benefits of the pre requisites:
Takt time maximises the productivity due to:
· Easily managed processes
. Workflow is matched to customer demand
· Output of each process matches customer demand
Standard Operations provide:
· Capable and repeatable processes
· Process control at source
· Improves accuracy of planning
· Better adherence to plans
· A platform from which continuous improvement can be made
· Reduced costs
· Improved quality
· Basis for training
To advance your knowledge and career prospects using Lean Six Sigma, sign up for the free lean six sigma training or the black belt certification course which includes a module on Line Balancing