Granddaddy of Them All
If you are a Big Ten or PAC-10 college football fan, I am not referring to the Rose Bowl. I am referring to Over Production. The granddaddy of all types of waste in the lean world.
Transportation, Inventory, Motion, Waiting, Over Production, Over Processing and Defects. These are the 7 types of waste.
Why is Over Production the granddaddy of them all, because Over Production can lead to more of each of the other 6 types of waste.
Transportation: If you are over producing then you are transporting more product then you need to transport. This could lead to paying for more trailers then you need affecting the bottom line directly.
Inventory: This is the direct result of over production. If more is produced than needed, the extra product goes into storage and sits and waits until it is needed if ever.
Motion: Storing all the extra product in inventory takes up more room. This means a bigger space is needed to do the same amount of work which leads to all the extra motion around the inventory. If you put 10 skids between two machines instead of two skids then when the operator moves between the two machines there is an extra 8 skids of distance to walk.
Waiting: If the product is not needed, it goes into inventory where it sits and waits. Waits to be sold. Waits to be finished. Waits to be thrown out.
Over Processing: The excess product can be reworked into a similar product with a few modifications. This over processing what is needed to get the product right would not have happened if there was not excess product to modify.
Defects: Storing inventory can lead to crushed boxes destroying product or product that becomes outdated and must be thrown out.
Over production is the worst of the worst. As hard as it might be to shift the mentality, it is better to see people standing around than it is to watch them produce more than is needed in order to look busy.