Wednesday, September 24, 2014

The Importance of Lean Processes

Inefficiency in a common problem in businesses across the world.  However, many don’t understand how that level of inefficiency affects the world as a whole.  This article highlights the actual cost of inefficient processes and the importance of lean manufacturing.  It turns out the inefficiency in procurement is costing businesses in North America alone over $1.5 billion every year!   I immediately thought how this money could fund the start-up costs of so many other businesses or be used to provide jobs to the numerous people who are unemployed.  I was also reminded of how important it is to have processes that are as lean as possible. 

These thoughts led to numerous questions about the number of businesses that are aware of the importance of lean processes.  I realize that in the grand scheme of things $1.5 billion is not the most significant sum.  However, divided up $1.5 billion could be significant seed money for 3,000 small businesses that could potentially grow into a large corporations. If the amount of money companies can save is as significant as $1.5 billion, why hasn’t this become a prioritized discussion in public policy arenas as a way to improve the state of the U.S. economy? Along with that, if the solution to this problem is as simple as implementing better and more user-friendly software systems, avoiding vendor standardization, and regularly updating these systems, why hasn’t there been a concerted, political effort to encourage the implementation of lean processes in companies across the U.S?

These are just a few questions, I would love to have answered.  

In conclusion, I don’t believe that the transition of all companies to lean processes would be the end all be all solution to alleviating inefficiency in the North America or the U,S.  However, it does seem that it would be a way to save a significant amount of money that businesses could then re-allocate to areas that are more useful to the public, like providing more jobs for example.    

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