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'Lean' Manufacturing Takes Root in U.S.
Author: N/A
Media Format: Articles
Publish Date: 4/29/2011

In an overview of lean, Fox News notes that General Electric estimates it has saved up to four direct labor hours, worth about $60, off every refrigerator the company manufactures. The story - with video - also cited Herman Miller, a furniture company based in Zeeland, MI, for reportedly quadrupling productivity by tailoring the Toyota method to its own system.

To dig deeper, read the LEI lean case study about how Herman Miller weathered the recession with its lean business system: http://www.lean.org/common/display/?o=1126

‘Lean Manufacturing’ Helped Win Jobs Back from China
Author: Vondrasek, Sandy
Media Format: Articles
Publish Date: 5/13/2010

On his first day as Vermont Castings new general manager, Fred Howe said an employee walked up to him and announced, "I have this idea to shorten the time it takes for this job.” An eight-hour process became a 25-minute one. Such employee involvement is a big reason why Castings' lean effort is winning work back from China.

2010 TOP PLANT WINNER: Toyota Industrial Equipment Manufacturing
Author: Vavra, Bob
Media Format: Articles
Publish Date: 12/1/2010

Toyota Industrial Equipment Manufacturing, Columbus, IN, has focused on involving more associates in maintenance. “Right now we have 19 maintenance associates and nearly 4,000 pieces of equipment to maintain. The only way you can maintain that high a number of equipment is to have maintenance part of everyone’s responsibility,” a company official told Plant Engineering, which named the facility its 2010 Top Plant.


A Learning Partnership to Support A New Era in American Manufacturing
Author: Schroeder, Lex
Media Format: Articles
Publish Date: 9/10/2013

As policymakers and business leaders work to rebuild and reimagine a struggling U.S. economy, GE is not only at the center of the conversation about new manufacturing, it is helping to drive it. In 2011, having recently brought 3,000 manufacturing jobs back home to Louisville, KY, GE partnered with the Lean Enterprise Institute to satisfy a clear business need: Could LEI help GE build a radically new management system at Appliance Park, one that would support new production and product development systems?

Applying Lean Manufacturing to Binding at Duraweld Ltd.
Author: Binding Edge Staff
Media Format: Articles
Publish Date: 6/30/2010

Jamie Swan, production manager at Duraweld Ltd. in Scarborough, England, explains how the plant launched a lean effort in 2006 and reports on the results.  The company makes specialty plastic stationery-protection products. (The Binding Edge)

Basic Stability is Basic to Lean Manufacturing Success
Author: Smalley, Art
Media Format: Articles
Publish Date: 1/15/2006

Having problems implementing pull systems, continuous flow, or more advanced lean tools? It's probably time to get back to basics -- the basic stability of your equipment.

Bringing Manufacturing Back To The U.S.A.
Author: Collins, Michael
Media Format: Articles
Publish Date: 4/10/2009

Higher overseas costs and domestic demand for custom products delivered quickly have led manufacturers to apply lean principles to keep production in the U.S. In fact, producers of complicated industrial goods may shift out-sourced production back to the U.S. However, the production of simple, high-volume consumer products probably won't return. One example of this trend is the Epson plant in Hillsboro, OR.  After losing the printer business to China and Indonesia, plant management applied lean principles to offset the lower labor costs in Asia. The plant's defect rate plunged to 300 per million and cartridges produced per employee increased about 40%.  Production is up 200% percent from 2001 levels. Another example is Hayward Pool products of Elizabeth, NJ, which adopted lean and six sigma methods to keep most of its production in the U.S. even though a competitor from China entered its market. The story cites six factors causing a reversal in off-shoring manufacturing. (Published online by Manufacturing.net.)

Bringing manufacturing jobs back to the U.S.
Author: N/A
Media Format: Articles
Publish Date: 4/21/2012

In a clip from April 2012, CBS News reports on Buck Knives bringing jobs back to the U.S.

Read a lean management case study of the company’s lean transformation, Knife Company Hones Competitiveness by Bucking the Status Quo: http://www.lean.org/common/display/?o=811

Read an lean leadership series interview with company CEO C.J. Buck on the challenges that a transformation brings to senior managers. http://www.lean.org/common/display/?o=480

Could IT Revive Japanese Manufacturing Systems?
Author: Keys, Phil
Media Format: Articles; Images
Publish Date: 4/30/2008
Under pressure from rising material costs and competition from cheap labor in developing countries, Japanese manufacturers are pursuing production efficiency as never before. However, after the bubble economy burst in the 1990s many companies fired high-wage engineers experienced in process improvement. Some companies are using camcorders and software to record and analyze people performing production activities. A supervisor views the tape to determine what movements can be improved. When an ideal process is designed by editing the video, it is used to educate inexperienced employees.
Cut the Fat in Your Shop With Lean Manufacturing
Author: Marchwinski, Chet
Media Format: Articles; Charts, Graphs and Diagrams; Images
Publish Date: 5/1/2003
This issue of Cast Polymer Connection magazine has basic information about lean concepts, but with a spin on how make-to-order shops apply them. Reprinted with permission. For more information, visit the International Cast Polymer Alliance.