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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Question

How can LEAN help in the area of custodial Maintenance


Answer

I have to believe you are referring to the principles of Jim Womack and Dan Jones outlined in Lean Thinking (1996), and discussed in detail at www.lean.org which says, “In short, lean thinking is lean because it provides a way to do more and more with less and less—less human effort, less human equipment, less time, and less space—while coming closer and closer to providing customers with exactly what they want.”
In the tough times we are facing due to the collapse of the financial system, it would seem that the implementation of these principles would be even more valuable. The future will surely demand providing better customer satisfaction with fewer and fewer resources and the elimination of waste, be it time or money. The stated purpose of lean is “to create value through eliminating waste.”
Obviously, this is a worthwhile goal in a service organization and focusing on it may aid survival in the years ahead.
Ask how you can make a vacuum or mop head last longer. Can you move to reduced chemical use? What adjustments in hand toweling can be made to reduce waste? Take a careful look at all you do and see where time and money is being spent with less than optimum results. Ask your staff to join in the search. You may be surprised at what turns up.
Lean times require lean measures.

Lynn E. Krafft, ICAN/ATEX Associate Editor
lekrafft@juno.com