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Title: A VSM improvement-based approach for lean operations in an Indian manufacturing SME

Authors: Aayush Saboo; Jose Arturo Garza-Reyes; Ahmet Er; Vikas Kumar

Addresses: Warwick Manufacturing Group, International Manufacturing Centre, The University of Warwick, Coventry, CV4 7AL, UK ' Centre for Supply Chain Improvement, The University of Derby, Kedleston Road Campus, Derby, DE22 1GB, UK ' Warwick Manufacturing Group, International Manufacturing Centre, University of Warwick, Coventry, CV4 7AL, UK ' Dublin City University Business School, Dublin City University, Dublin City, Ireland

Abstract: The current economic environment in the Indian manufacturing industry is offering a perfect opportunity to SMEs of this country to develop and grow by acting as suppliers of large multinational original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). To meet the challenge of offering high standards of quality, cost and delivery (QCD) to these multinational OEMs, Indian manufacturing SMEs must implement effective approaches, such as lean manufacturing, to continually and systematically improve their operations. However, the academic literature indicates that the adoption of lean manufacturing and some of its tools, such as value stream mapping (VSM), by Indian manufacturing SMEs is feeble, or in many cases lean initiatives have been unsuccessful. This paper presents a successful application of VSM in an Indian manufacturing SME. The results of the study and operational improvements achieved indicate that the application of VSM is an effective strategy for organisations of this type to improve their processes and thus meet their current challenges. This paper contributes by providing empirical evidence of the application of VSM in India and thus it can be used as a guiding reference for managers and engineers to undertake specific process improvement projects, in their organisations, similar to the one presented in this paper.

Keywords: India; lean operations; manufacturing SMEs; value stream mapping; VSM; lean manufacturing; small and medium-sized enterprises; process improvement.

DOI: 10.1504/IJLER.2014.062281

International Journal of Lean Enterprise Research, 2014 Vol.1 No.1, pp.41 - 58

Received: 12 Mar 2013
Accepted: 20 Aug 2013

Published online: 03 Jun 2014 *

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