Case Study: An Interview With Graco Supply Company’s Director of IT

What does a LeanDNA implementation look like from an IT team’s perspective? LeanDNA has a lot of upside for inventory reduction and shortage management, but many people are wary of the process of launching new supply chain software. We sat down with Jason Irvan, Director of Information Technology at Graco Supply Company, in our newest case study for a first-hand look into how easy a LeanDNA implementation can be. Continue Reading “Case Study: An Interview With Graco Supply Company’s Director of IT”

Lean Manufacturing Predictions for 2018

2017 was a big year for manufacturing! From adding an average of 16,000 jobs each month to continuing the years-long trend of increasing output and productivity, the US manufacturing industry saw a lot of good.

Here at LeanDNA, we had a great year too! We made major improvements to the way manufacturers leverage collaborative analytics to reduce inventory, manage shortages, and execute their lean projects. For example, we created more automated ways that our system’s AI-based Inventory Actions highlight opportunities for inventory reduction, and brought to light new ways for sites within the same company to collaborate on global inventory initiatives. But what’s next for the world of manufacturing as a whole?

Here are 5 predictions for what we expect to see in 2018: Continue Reading “Lean Manufacturing Predictions for 2018”

Got Bad Supply Chain Data? Here’s What you Need to Know for Data Cleansing

“Data tools would be great– but for us it’s garbage in, garbage out.”
“We can’t start fixing this problem because it will unearth 100 others!”

Have you heard this before? With the amount of data manufacturers juggle, it’s no wonder so many face the same dilemma: missing and inaccurate data… on a massive scale!

Data can be an overwhelming issue, but it’s time to stop saying “our data isn’t great.” LeanDNA’s built-in data cleansing process helps manufacturers evaluate and fix their data. Over our time working with manufacturers, we’ve discovered 13 common data points where bad data runs rampant. Here’s what you should understand and check if undertaking data cleansing in your own system. Continue Reading “Got Bad Supply Chain Data? Here’s What you Need to Know for Data Cleansing”

Virtual Factory Management: The Cutting Edge of Lean

Originally Featured in AME’s Target Online Magazine

Industry 4.0, Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), smart manufacturing. There is a lot of change happening in our industry right now! But what is something on the absolute “cutting edge” of lean? Answer: Virtual factory management powered by AI-based lean analytics.

Technology and new processes are revolutionizing factories, just as lean itself did over 30 years ago. But they’re not here to replace lean – what’s new and next will make lean even better. Continuously improve continuous improvement, you know? And virtual factory management is set to make waves. Continue Reading “Virtual Factory Management: The Cutting Edge of Lean”

Helping Your Buyers Understand the ABCs of ABC Analysis

Your buyers do not have enough hours in the day. From managing shortages to finding inventory reduction opportunities, good time management is crucial. When dealing with thousands of parts and dozens of suppliers, your team needs a way to prioritize the items with the greatest overall impact on inventory cost. That’s where ABC analysis comes in. Continue Reading “Helping Your Buyers Understand the ABCs of ABC Analysis”

How Can You Unlock Your ERP?

If you’re a supply chain leader that depends on ERP every day, you’re definitely familiar with ERP’s shortcomings. When it comes to managing all your supply chain data, providing alerts for inventory and shortage issues, driving standard work, and creating reports, ERP’s “features” are definitely limited. ERP systems are a critical part of your business, but they lack the tactical execution tools that are needed for today’s complex supply chain.

Occasionally, we hear companies ask “How is LeanDNA different than ERP?” Or, “Doesn’t my ERP already perform all the analytics my supply chain needs?” At first glance, they can seem similar. Here are the areas where ERPs need a little help – and how leveraging LeanDNA to fill the gaps results in substantial savings: Continue Reading “How Can You Unlock Your ERP?”

Supply Chain Best Practices: 3 Phrases to Stop Using at Work

There are some terms and phrases we all hear regularly in lean manufacturing. You really could write an entire dictionary to explain and interpret all the lingo! But there are some phrases in the factory that might make you turn your head for the wrong reasons. If you aim to follow supply chain best practices at work, here are three phrases you should eliminate from your vocabulary: Continue Reading “Supply Chain Best Practices: 3 Phrases to Stop Using at Work”

PFEP (Plan For Every Part) Helps You Optimize Your Entire Supply Chain

ERP systems require expensive, complex, and routine maintenance to keep their systems running efficiently. They are central to your day-to-day activities, but can become absolute nightmares without a simple and structured process for routine data updates. That’s why Lean Manufacturers introduced Plan for Every Part (PFEP).

PFEP optimizes the policies that define how to procure each part. PFEP enables supply chain leaders to glean a 360-degree view of their inventory and procurement policies to make sure each inventory dollar is maximized. Unfortunately, this PFEP “tune-up” often uses very time-consuming and manual Excel analysis that limits the frequency of optimization. Weeks become months become years. New technology based on Lean Supply Chain best practices is revolutionizing the way PFEP can be used on a daily basis to drive game-changing results in factory performance.

This post will help you set the groundwork for how and why to start using the PFEP methodology. The real end goal of PFEP is to balance your entire supply chain by having as little inventory as possible with minimal shortages. Better yet, you’ll learn how to equip your team so they’re better skilled, automate and accelerate your processes, and avoid deploying expensive consultants. Continue Reading “PFEP (Plan For Every Part) Helps You Optimize Your Entire Supply Chain”

Lean Manufacturing: 26 Terms Lean Factory Professionals Should Know

To an outsider, the lean manufacturing world can look a little like alphabet soup. Within five minutes of any lean meeting, you will hear acronyms that can seem like the letters are strung together with no rhyme or reason.

But as you and your company embrace lean, those letters start to work like alphabet magnets on a refrigerator. They are purposefully arranged to form acronyms and concepts that separate lean from, well, not-lean. (Side note: “not-lean” is probably not a term real Lean pros would use.)

Let’s take a look at the following 26 terms to better understand what makes lean manufacturing effective. And who knows, we might just learn a term for “not-lean.” Continue Reading “Lean Manufacturing: 26 Terms Lean Factory Professionals Should Know”

Case Study: How JR Automation Operationalizes Lean Six Sigma With LeanDNA

No matter where you are on your Lean journey, a tool designed specifically around Lean Six Sigma can drive success. In our newest case study, JR Automation proves that from launch to sustainability, LeanDNA’s technology drives continuous improvement results.

When JR Automation was preparing a company-wide Lean Six Sigma launch, the company wanted a system they could launch immediately to avoid a lengthy, difficult implementation of a custom solution built in SharePoint, Excel, or other disconnected systems. On top of that, they wanted a system that was easy to use, low-cost, and low maintenance. So they turned to LeanDNA’s Lean Projects tool. Continue Reading “Case Study: How JR Automation Operationalizes Lean Six Sigma With LeanDNA”