Mapping Value Streams

Value stream mapping is a lean tool developed by Toyota to eliminate waste, thereby increasing value for the customer. Value stream mapping typically involves using flowchart documents with various symbols to analyze and design the various workflows in the end to end process. In this article, we want to give you an overview of the steps to utilize value stream mapping in your company.

Create a Team
To create a value stream map, you will need to gather representatives from various departments or processes in your company to enable information to pass between them smoothly and ensure important items aren’t left out. Including outside suppliers in the team can also help gain an outside perspective. 

Hold a Kaizen Event
With a team assembled, the next step in creating a value stream map is to hold a Kaizen event. Over the course of the event it will be important to determine the process family, create a template with symbols to use to create the map, and draft a current and future state Value Stream Map. 

Draft a Plan 
After your team understands the current and future state of the company through mapping, and has identified areas where waste can be eliminated, it’s time to move on to drafting a plan. A good draft should include details about the logistics of the project, such as possible team members, a schedule for events and deliverables, cost estimates, and of course the goals and benefits of the project.

Benefits of Value Stream Mapping
Value Stream Mapping is a lean tool that can help identify inefficiencies in the line of production and even knowledge-based work. Through Adonis’ Continuous Improvement program, we offer Kaizen Event Facilitation and Lean/ Six Sigma Project Execution that will help guide your team through the process of creating value stream mapping, which will help improve your company’s overall bottom line.

Ron Auza