Implementing lean in engineer-to-order manufacturing: Experiences from a ETO manufacturer
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This chapter reviews the state of the art in engineer-to-order production and non-repetitive production to give an overview of existing research and applications of Lean in this sector. Afterwards, a real case study at a medium-sized ETO manufacturer shows an approach to implement Lean Production in such a non-repetitive manufacturing environment. The experiences from the case study illustrate that the suitability of certain lean methods, such as value stream mapping or Kanban is limited, while other lean methods, such as 5S, CIP, or a material-oriented layout, brought significant changes. In the consolidation phase of the Lean production system, the authors defined a Lean-Toolset with the most suitable lean methods for engineer-to-order manufacturing systems. A core aspect of the Lean implementation was the desired mind-change of the employees. The chapter closes with a short description of the achieved results in the case study and gives an outlook to further research activities.
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