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VSM – Value Stream Mapping

A tool to visualize your current process and discover the Opportunities for Improvement  

Most of the opportunities that we find in the process of consulting with manufacturing companies have been there for years, overlooked every single day.

The daily pace does not give us the vision and the time. Value Stream Mapping Analysis is the right tool to focus our attention on the current process and the many opportunities there are for its optimization. The goal of the VSM – Value Stream Map Analysis is to determine which of the operations add value and which do not. It is amazing how much energy, space, materials, labor, and effort is put into doing nothing for the product! It is typical to overlook these wastes because they have traditionally been considered as a part of the process. In today’s competitive world though, we really need to rethink it and pay attention to waste reduction, it is affecting our cost and can be devastating in short or long term for our business.

Soooo... What is VSM?

VSM – Value Stream Mapping is an analytical strategy to assess the value we really are adding in the process from the perspective of the customer.

In the traditional Manufacturing operation, more than 90% of the resources are applied into activities that Do NOT add any value to the product!

Lean Manufacturing through a VSM – Value Stream Map Analysis can help discover these wastes of resources and bring the process to a higher performance in just a few days. When we can show the process and its wastes in a graphic representation it is easier to understand by everyone and many of those issues are immediately resolved.

The Lead Time

The idea is to analyze what we are doing during the total Lead-Time. That is all the time that runs from the moment we start touching the raw materials until we can ship the finished product to the customer. Henry Ford made a number of observations and focused on expediting the lead-time in his Automotive Plant. He is credited of having said, “The longer a product stays in our plant, the bigger our cost.” Many of those basic concepts are still present in the most modern assembly facilities around the World.

The VSM Value Stream Map is very much like a Flow-Chart, but differs in the attention it pays to the time taken by each process and the Inventory Levels. Those two factors are vital in the health of any Manufacturing Operation. We thoroughly explain this in our "Keys to Lean Implementation" E-Handbook.

Value Stream Mapping is, like many of the Lean activities, something that is moving all the time. If you already had one made even if a short time ago, the best you can do is to update it with any improvements that might have taken place. Now that is your "New" Current State Value Stream Map. Bring your team together and look for new opportunities. The bad news is: "You will never be done with this" The good news is: "You will keep improving your operation over and over!"

"Value is added only when our action or operation contributes to transform the materials into the product that the customer is willing to pay for."

If you want to get a Jump-Start in this magnificent tool, You probably should think of Giving Us an Opportunity to show how much you can improve your business in a very few days and keep improving forever. 

VSM - Value Stream Mapping turns into a Culture for everyone in the Company. We all will be constantly thinking and assessing if any of the actions we see and take for granted, are or are NOT "adding value" in the eyes of the customer.



If you find all this free information useful, just imagine how much your operation will improve when we can work together one on one!

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