How to Achieve Six Sigma With a Smarter Trash Compactor

Six SigmaAre your business practices in need of improvement? You’re not alone either in your need or in seeking out resources and means to streamlining everything from sales models and production to something as easy to overlook as waste management. Six Sigma is a group of tools and techniques designed to optimize your business processes and therefore your products themselves. Often combined with the methodology of lean manufacturing to produce the system known as Lean Six Sigma, this is great knowledge to consider implementing in your venture to tighten up your business model. Lean Six Sigma addresses problems in processes and waste as well as variation and design to form a comprehensive plan for streamlining your business as a whole.

What is Lean Six Sigma?

Lean manufacturing addresses business processes and their waste production of all forms through inefficiencies. The goal is to improve overall value, which is measured through the eyes of the customer. Any action or service that a customer would be willing to pay for is considered valuable. Six Sigma is based on a concept in statistical quality control which evaluates process capability. In manufacturing the Six Sigma methodology uses data to determine an appropriate and achievable sigma level for each process, which, when achieved in the short-term production line will decrease defects and therefore waste over time. Lean Six Sigma then utilizes data analytics to reduce waste and variation and therefore increase corporate value.

Why Is Reducing Landfill Waste Important?

Landfill waste is not typically included in the official seven wastes described in the lean manufacturing methodology, but it is not difficult to see how it would interact with them. Oftentimes excess landfill waste is the result of, or results in, other forms of waste such as excess downtime as well as movement. Without a streamlined landfill waste management plan variations in these practices can lead to a high cost of waste removal, and even affect the manufacturing process as employees are inconvenienced by things like waste can placement or problems with them overflowing.

Applying Lean Six Sigma to Waste Management

To start you will need data which means auditing your current waste production to get an idea of how much of what kinds of waste you are sending to the landfill. If you haven’t already designated people to devote themselves to waste management, find employees that are excited about the challenge. Begin finding ways that you can reduce waste streams throughout your operations by implementing recycling and reuse strategies. Investing in a trash compactor will further reduce the size of your waste by a ratio of six to one, which will help to reduce the cost you spend on waste removal. Also, consider your purchasing practices and how you can reduce the packaging on things you are both buying as well as the products you are sending out.

Lean Six Sigma is a great philosophy for improving the value of your company and its products. Waste management always adds value to your company not only through saving you money on logistics and removal costs but also because customers are interested in the corporate responsibility of your business. Being involved in the zero landfill initiative is a great way to devote yourself to improving the way business is done, and Lean Six Sigma is a means to cause that change from within.

For more information about how to improve your waste management practices, call KenBay today!  

What if Waste is the Source of Your Waste in Lean Manufacturing?

Lean Manufacturing

There are many forms of waste that arise in complex processes of production. Not only will you send waste to the landfill, but you’ll also find waste in your water and electricity resources, as well as in every phase of the production line and in defective products. These are just a few of the wastes that necessitate the lean manufacturing philosophy that has become the norm throughout the industrial world, in which leaders aim to reduce all streams of waste throughout production.

When we think of waste, we typically think of garbage and yet in lean manufacturing models, actual landfill-bound waste isn’t part of the consideration. Should it be central to the lean manufacturing model? Reducing landfill waste does indeed save a company money in logistics and possibly purchasing, as well as other valuable resources that are being wasted.

What is Lean Manufacturing?

The concept of lean manufacturing is derived from the renowned Toyota Production System which was developed and widely adopted in the 1990s. The Toyota Production System focuses on seven wastes that, when reduced, will improve overall customer value. Since value is measured through the eyes of the customer, any action or service that a customer would be willing to pay for is considered valuable. This lean manufacturing model is what made a small Japanese car company into the world’s largest vehicle manufacturer, and all by focusing on the reduction of waste. In their seven waste streams, however, landfill waste is never mentioned, though in today’s market it is absolutely of value to a customer who wants to buy products from responsible companies.

Why Should Landfill Waste Be Included in Lean Manufacturing?

Landfill waste is an aspect of production where the lean manufacturing mentality can be applied to save money and improve productivity and therefore value. Not only do your customers desire products from companies who care about their impact on the environment, but the amount of landfill waste you produce directly correlates to other forms of waste that you are probably overlooking. When you have excess landfill waste, you will  find waste in  aspects of production like logistics, space usage, and downtime.

How Waste Can Lead to More Waste

When your landfill waste is piling up at unreasonable levels, it is often a symptom or cause of other forms of waste throughout your production where the principles of lean manufacturing are transformative. Motion is one of the seven wastes that is often associated with the movement of landfill waste throughout a manufacturing facility as waste cans need to be frequently emptied, or are in inconvenient places for certain employees. This movement can then lead to more waiting, which is another of the seven wastes, as employees might get lackadaisical in their movement throughout the facility resulting in lower production times.

Trash compactors are a great tool to help in reducing landfill waste and the other wastes associated with it throughout your facility. Not only do they reduce the size and therefore the frequency of waste removal trips, but they also reduce the movement associated with landfill waste. If you are considering waste management practices and how they coincide with your lean manufacturing model, call KenBay to find out how we can be of service.