Proceedings of the

The 33rd European Safety and Reliability Conference (ESREL 2023)
3 – 8 September 2023, Southampton, UK

From Waste to Value: A Practical Framework for Waste Identification and Mitigation Using Lean Management Principles

Ali Nouri Qarahasanlou1 and Abbas Barabadi2

1Faculty of Technical and Engineering, Imam Khomeini International University Qazvin, Iran.

2Department of Engineering and Safety, University of Tromsø, N-9037 Tromsø, Norway, Tromsø, Norway.


In the complex and fast-changing marketing environment, there is a constant need to reduce costs and enhance the performance of production systems. The cost-cutting strategies need to consider the long-term effect on the company. For example, the layoff may reduce the cost in the short term, but in the long term, it may significantly affect employees' psychological safety and increase human error. Hence, any changes in the company must be based on a clear management philosophy. Lean management focuses on continuously improving processes by eliminating non-value-adding activities. It tries to create more value for customers with fewer resources, increasing efficiency, quality, and customer satisfaction. Lean philosophy considers these non-value activities in three general categories: overburden, unevenness, and waste, and tries to remove them from the value production cycle through the continuous development process. Although the lean management style is a well-known approach style, there is much difficulty in implementing this approach. One of the main reasons is the organization's culture and habits, daily routine, and approach, which may not be aligned with lean thinking. Furthermore, for lean thinking to be effectively applied throughout the organization, it must be comprehensible and straightforward. In some cases, the Lean tools need to modify based on the already well-developed approach of the company. The main goal of this paper is to present a practical approach for implementing Lean thinking in identifying and prioritizing non-value activities for the industry. Here, "Waste walking" and "Value-stream mapping" lean tools and the FMECA principle are used to develop "waste ranking criteria" for the identification and prioritization of non-value activities.

Keywords: Value-stream mapping, Waste identification, Lean management, Rapid improvement, VUCA.

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