‌‌ Lean 4.0


is a link between lean manufacturing and Industry 4.0, assuming they complement and reinforce each other

In the last few decades, the manufacturing sector has experienced a transition from artisanal production to mass production and from mass production to lean production. Lean manufacturing, derived from Toyota’s manufacturing system, is a philosophy that simplifies procedures to reduce losses and increase resources.

Today, Lean is widely recognized as best practice for manufacturing companies worldwide. Lean has thus succeeded and accepted in improving performance and fostering competitiveness that its implementation has been extended to other non-manufacturing sectors such as healthcare, construction, logistics, banking and telecommunications. The upgrade is Lean 4.0, which is transitioning to digitizing methods.

Lean 4.0

However, as traditional manufacturing systems have evolved into digitized manufacturing systems due to the implementation of Industry 4.0 technologies such as Internet of Things (IoT), big data and data analytics, additive manufacturing or 3D printing, advanced robotics, augmented and virtual reality, cloud computing , simulation, machine learning and artificial intelligence, among other things, a number of questions arise. Will Industry 4.0 technologies replace Lean or coexist?

Are lean manufacturing and 4.0 technology compatible and synergistic, or are they different? In other words, the exaggerated question is, can Lean follow the digital age and evolve into Lean 4.0?


‌‌Will Industry 4.0 Replace Lean or Can They Coexist?

Industry 4.0 has begun to recognize itself as a new industry paradigm. It is based on the widespread introduction of communication and information technologies, which are likely to lead organizations to better performance. In short, Sample Industry 4.0 incorporates all the modern computing and automation technologies that companies now use to integrate the various functional tasks of their manufacturing systems and supply chains into an integrated digital ecosystem. In other words, Industry 4.0 focuses on using advanced technology to develop integrated and highly flexible manufacturing systems and supply chains.

Benefits of digitized and highly integrated manufacturing systems and supply chains provided by Industry 4.0 technology include increased revenue, increased efficiency and productivity, reduced machine downtime, shorter cycle times, improved supply / demand matching, improved product visibility and traceability in supply chains, among many others.


‌‌Skinny production as an industry 4.0

are industrial paradigms whose philosophies are the central basis for the design of production operations. Unlike Industry 4.0, which relies on modern technology to solve the modern problems facing companies, Lean is a technological adversary whose philosophy focuses on people, processes and a culture of continuous improvement.

Thus, at first glance, the principles of orientation and simplicity of people may seem to be lean in relation to the latest digital and automated technologies in Industry 4.0.



‌‌Skinny production as an industry 4.0

are industrial paradigms whose philosophies are the central basis for the design of production operations. Unlike Industry 4.0, which relies on modern technology to solve the modern problems facing companies, Lean is a technological adversary whose philosophy focuses on people, processes and a culture of continuous improvement.

Thus, at first glance, the principles of orientation and simplicity of people may seem to be lean in relation to the latest digital and automated technologies in Industry 4.0.


‌‌Lean 4.0

It would be hard to imagine that the design and application of its technical solutions, although Lean will survive the Industry 4.0 revolution and coexist with the technology it supports, will not change. For example, technological advances have already transformed traditional Kanban physical cards into e-Kanban, mapping the value of current on paper and paper into e-VSM.

Similarly, Industry 4.0 technologies may require that some Lean solutions be adapted to support and coexist with such technologies, while in some cases the use of others may be reduced or eliminated altogether.

For example, it is easy to predict that highly digitized and automated production environments will limit the use of tables, Kanban and Andon physical cards, among other lean solutions.

As a result, we expect not only Lean to survive in the new era of Industry 4.0, but also the development of some of its technical solutions.


‌‌Are Lean and Industry 4.0 technologies compatible?

Given the survival and need for Lean in the Industry 4.0 era, the next question arises as to whether the Lean and Industry 4.0 paradigms are compatible. Synergistic paradigm: can we work together and support each other. In short, we can see that lean manufacturing and Industry 4.0 are often not only compatible, but also complementary due to the synergies they share.

This offers companies the opportunity to achieve a higher level of efficiency in their production systems and supply chains.

Some examples of such compatibility and complementary synergies, which are often discussed in the academic and industrial literature, relate to:


‌‌Timely (JIT) and digitization of supply chains.

JIT is recognized as one of the pillars of Lean. JIT relies on accurate and timely stock information as a prerequisite for successfully reducing security stocks. Digitization of supply chains can improve this by making transparency available through better tracking and accurate data on stock levels and their location.


‌‌Autonomy and cyber-physical systems.

Another recognized pillar of Lean is autonomy, which refers to the ability of machines to detect abnormal conditions. Cyber-physical systems provide machines with intelligence, which facilitates and improves autonomy through faster reporting of deviations. Carrying out analyzes of the causes of failures and automatically triggering corrective action.


‌‌Comprehensive Productive Maintenance (TPM) and virtual / augmented reality, machine learning and big data.

The TPM philosophy is based on the concept of autonomous maintenance, which refers to the transfer of responsibilities and authority for routine maintenance tasks from technicians to machine operators. Virtual and augmented reality can be used by companies, for example, through the use of devices. Installed on the head, to train their operators in autonomous maintenance and provide them with instructions for their implementation.

Similarly, Industry 4.0 technologies such as machine learning and big data can. These contribute to the monitoring of wear, loads and faults of the production chain equipment and to the early detection and localization of faults. In this way, the overall efficiency of the equipment (OEE) can be improved while reducing damage to the machine.


‌‌Value flow mapping (VSM) and radio frequency identification (RFID) and Internet of Things (IoT).

VSM is considered one of the essential Lean technical solutions to improve efficiency, as it contributes to the identification and elimination of waste in processes. However, VSM offers a snapshot and understanding of the process only at a specific point in time. Thus, VSM can take advantage of the transparency and accurate real-time data collection assistance provided by some Industry 4.0 technologies, such as IoT and RFID.


EHeijunka (production balancing) and big data analytics.

Heijunka is a lean solution that supports JIT and pull systems by producing products at a constant speed. So that other steps of the process can also be carried out at a constant and predictable speed. Heijunko dictates customer demand, so it can benefit from more accurate demand forecasts. Enabled by big data analysis, which can lead to more stable production planning.

Similarly, other Lean technical solutions, such as Kanban and one-piece flow, can be complemented by Industry 4.0 technology. Examples include simulation to determine and understand ideal material parameters such as batch size, stock or delivery frequency, as well as RFID , to observe batch location, number and location, and monitor schedule changes.

Although the above examples mainly relate to the benefits and improvements that Lean can gain in Industry 4.0. There is a consensus in the scientific and industrial literature that there are manufacturing companies that have already incorporated Lean into their business.

Better opportunities for successful progress in the digital age. Staufen (2016) found in a survey of 179 companies that the successful first users of Industry 4.0 are those who have already had experience with Lean.



LahkoCan Lean follow the digital age and evolve into Lean 4.0?

All the above evidence clearly shows that technology Lean in Industry 4.0 not only can they coexist, but they can also complement each other and offer each other a stronger combined paradigm, preferably called Lean 4.0, that manufacturing companies can adopt to improve the performance of their operations and supply chains.

In fact, the evidence provided by Küpper et al. (2017) from the Boston Consulting Group suggests that the combined approach of Lean and Industry 4.0 can help organizations reduce costs by 40%. In contrast to only 15% if digitization and Lean are used separately.

Küpper et al. (2017) report an industrial case at a European food production plant. Where Lean has been improved using big data and data analytics. In their study, Küpper et al. (2017) showed that the company does not have the transparency to understand the operation of the factory and the root causes of the problems.

With a system of sensors based on IoT technology, the company was able to gather key OEEs, the root causes of machine failure in real time and in mobile devices and laptops.

Large data and data analytics were used to perform analyzes that identified fault patterns of production equipment. With this information, the company was able to use predictive maintenance, which significantly increased the average time between errors.

In addition to using benchmarking and implementing optimization systems, the company was able to improve its OEE by 8 to 10%. This case study is part of the still very limited empirical evidence of the interaction between Lean and Industry 4.0. However, it confirms what is often claimed and reported in the academic and industrial literature.

About the fact that Lean will not disappear with the digitization of production, systems and supply chains, but will evolve into Lean 4.0.



‌‌Lean 4.0 Methodology

It is a new way to optimize your company’s production process. It does this by detecting and disposing of waste in the form of wasted time, wasted work and wasted money. This will help you reduce the costs of quality assurance, inventory and downtime, while increasing production.

Lean 4.0 is a lean methodology that will help companies save time and money and optimize the work of each employee. We offer courses, consulting and tools to help companies implement Lean 4.0 from the top down.

Lean 4.0 is a new and improved way to succeed in the ever-changing world of lean manufacturing.

Digitization, demographic change and globalization are changing the way companies do business. If they want to keep up with the competition and survive in this ever-changing world, companies need to adopt the Lean 4.0 approach.


‌‌This innovative framework consists of four key parts:

(1) continuous innovation with digital technologies;

(2) Design with customers in mind;

(3) Develop your people;

(4) actively innovate management practices.

The support and motivation of the company’s management is crucial at this starting point. Lean or lean production, efficiency, productivity, reliability, availability, performance, management, process optimization, with methods: TPM , 5S , Kaizen , SMED , SFM. etc., are indispensable elements of any organization that wants to successfully compete in the global market.

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