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Where to start with a bottleneck

Jun 28, 2022 12:01:50 PM

Bottlenecks_Park_Avenue_Solutions_Lean_OpExFound your bottleneck?

Let’s exploit it!

Start at the BOTTLENECK task.

If the output of the system is constrained, we must first try to increase the output of the bottleneck itself. Any idle time of the bottleneck reduces output.

Here’s what we can do:

  • Eliminate any non-value-adding work
  • Remove or limit interruptions (Remove impediments)
  • Let the bottleneck resource work at a steady pace
  • Provide high-quality tools and materials
  • Carefully prioritize the bottleneck’s workload
  • Ensure that there’s enough work to do for the team so that they don’t become idle
  • Only use one resource at that task
  • WARNING: don’t shield the team from useful information like input from the customer, production issues, and other feedback
  • Plan for the variation in the bottleneck; know its mean and standard deviation
  • Make sure bottleneck is running at max rates
  • Reduce change-over time
  • Synchronize flow before and after

*****Continue to ask WHY*****

Leigh Ann Schildmeier
Written by Leigh Ann Schildmeier

Leigh Ann Schildmeier specializes in implementing continuous improvement and risk mitigation strategies that help clients increase efficiency, improve quality and service, and increase profits. A frequent speaker and coach on process improvement topics, she is a certified Lean Practitioner, a Six Sigma Black Belt, and a Kata Coach with more than 20 years of experience across a range of industries, including healthcare, finance, and manufacturing. Leigh Ann is the founder and president of Park Avenue Solutions, a business process improvement consulting firm that works to empower excellence in businesses and teams.



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