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Lean Manufacturing - Lean Systems, Quality and the Environment

Essay by   •  January 29, 2016  •  Research Paper  •  1,111 Words (5 Pages)  •  489 Views

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Lean manufacturing has become an ever increasing necessity in American manufacturing. Companies are striving to make a profit in a wildly fluctuating economy. Added to that; companies are becoming more aware of their responsibility to the environment as global citizens. Competition and innovation introduce new and exciting products to the market place every day. Large global companies have to respond with Lean manufacturing systems that reduce costs, improve their quality and environmental impact.

For the purpose of this paper, Boeing will be used as an example. They manufacture airplanes. This company was chosen due to the extent they have shown the capabilities and processes of lean manufacturing. They have implemented lean principles all through their organization. Their quality standards are extremely high; and they continually meet those standards. This is an enormous manufacturer who deals with ongoing manufacturing as well as innovation in the field. They have expressed a concern for the environment and their impact upon it. They also have a track record of high safety standards and programs for their employees.

Boeing is the largest air travel manufacturer in the world. They are now experiencing serious competition with Airbus out of Europe. In an effort to compete more effectively with their competition; they have dedicated their focus on the implementation of and continuing improvement through lean manufacturing.

Boeing has begun utilizing their research and development facilities to find ways to not only reduce their manufacturing carbon footprint; but also ways to develop new fuels that will reduce emissions and be more sustainable.

“We’re developing and testing new technologies that will bring greater fuel efficiency and environmentally progressive innovations to our customers and our communities around the world. We’re meeting environmental performance targets for our facilities while ramping up commercial airplane production. And we’re using innovative approaches in cleanup efforts as part of our remediation program. (Boeing)”

They are being proactive towards the environment. Many companies should look towards Boeing as an example of innovation towards the environment. This company is leading the charge in environmental improvement. They collaborate with other leading companies to develop ways to improve environmental impact.

“Boeing is leading local and global collaboration for the complex challenges our world faces now, and looking to the future. We support industry-wide approaches to align on ways to improve the environment. And whether it’s through the development of sustainable aviation biofuel or by working with communities globally on important environmental issues, we’re making a difference. (Boeing)”

Quality has become another leading concern. Boeing has developed a substantial Quality Assurance Program Plan. The plan was developed by an outside laboratory, Aquatic Testing Laboratories. The plan is a one hundred and nine page document that lays out quality procedures for all areas of manufacturing and systems. They strive to continually improve quality; trying to get defect rate down to zero. That defect has already been reduced dramatically through the implementation of their lean systems and quality assurance plan. However; their dedication to improving quality has not stopped. They are dedicated to continuing improvement and reducing defects to zero. The plan includes procedures to write standard operating procedures. Boeing has realized that if all procedures do not have a standard to follow; quality will suffer. Every

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