Developing a Lean Workforce
A Guide for Human Resources, Plant Managers, and Lean Coordinators
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Changing an organization from a mass manufacturing environment to a lean environment is significant and affects all levels of the company if the implementation is done correctly. Many times, however, lean implementers become so involved with the nuts and bolts of lean implementation that the "people" side of the business is neglected. Transform your HR Department into an Agent of Change during Lean Implementation.
With an HR perspective, veteran consultants Chris Harris and Rick Harris walk readers through a simple, step-by-step proven method for transforming a mass production workforce into a lean thinking one that possesses the necessary skills, training, and attitude to march in a new direction. They explain the role of human resources in a lean-oriented facility, emphasizing systematic training that continues for all employees. They also discuss the value of promoting employees from within a facility to team leader and group leader positions, and the importance of flexibility. This critically acclaimed book includes sample training sessions with explanations.
Most of us are now far enough down the path in lean production to realize that the results lie in the details. This short volume presents all of the details you will need to create a frontline workforce and system of direct supervision that can effectively plan, do, reflect, and adjust, as you move your own operations steadily ahead.
--James Womack, Chairman, Lean Enterprise Institute
Table of Contents
Understanding the Role of Human Resources in a Lean Facility
Preparing to Develop a Lean-Thinking Workforce
Value Stream Maps
Continuous (One-Piece) Flow
Lean Materials Delivery Systems
Creating a Flexible Workforce
Developing Group Leaders (Supervisors)
Continually Improving Your Workforce through New Hires, Promotions, and Ongoing Training
Chris and Rick Harris have simply and clearly cataloged the key human elements of deploying Lean. We have followed their practical implementation advice for several years. This book, like all their advice, is directly to the point. Their chapters convincingly reinforce that, '...Lean Manufacturing is about implementing productive and efficient systems, not just a lot of random tools'. I found the chapters on creating flexible workforces and developing group leaders particularly useful. Developing a Lean Workforce will be used as standard lean training in my company.
--Steve Gudgel, Vice President, Operations, Remy Electrical Aftermarket
Practical tools and insights for companies as they begin their Lean transformation are hard to come by. Rick Harris' book does just that. It's based on real world experience and filled with 'lessons learned' that can help companies avoid the common mistakes that trip so many up as they begin taking the first steps on their Lean journey.
--Kathryn A. Miller, Vice President, Lean Enterprise & Quality, Parker Hannifin Corporation
This book fills a void in the Lean literature by addressing the preparation, change in thinking and training required to manage a work force through a Lean transformation. Though much material is available dealing with the physical rearrangement of equipment and materials for a lean flow, good references for managing the people issues are hard to find. Included in the text are simple but effective lean training exercises for both the office and shop floor audiences. I believe this book should be required reading for Human Resource Managers in organizations implementing Lean systems.
--David Saylor, Managing Director of Manufacturing, Masco Builder Cabinet Group