edX: Lean Production

Learn about lean management, a customer-centric methodology that improves processes by eliminating waste and focusing on value-added tasks.

This course will introduce the main tenets of the Toyota Production System, which includes Just-in-Time manufacturing, quality management tools, and the critical concept of Kaizen, the Japanese practice of continuous improvement. You will also learn about key organisation and managerial approaches that are used in Lean.  

You will learn how to analyse process flows in order to establish process capacity and identify the process bottleneck. You will then calculate resource utilisation and cycle time to evaluate the impact of set up times, batching, defects and reworks on key process performance measures, including inventory, flow rate and flow time.

We will also discuss the impact of key concepts of Lean, including Heijunka, Kanban, Jidoka, Andon, Poka Yoke, and 5S, which help achieve increased productivity and quality.

Upon successful completion of this series, learners will earn the Technical University of Munich Lean Six Sigma Yellow Belt Certification, confirming mastery of the fundamentals of Lean Six Sigma to a Yellow Belt level, based on the American Society of Quality's Body of Knowledge for the Certified Six Sigma Yellow Belt. 


Week 1: Introduction to Lean Management
Review of the rise of mass production and the challenge presented by Japan's Toyota Production System and Lean Manufacturing, defined by both Quality Control and continuous improvement (Kaizen) and Quantity Control (Just-In-Time). We review the seven (eight) elements of waste and The Seven (Eight) Elements of Waste.
Week 2: Measuring Process Performance

  • Introduction
  • Measure of Process Performance
  • Little's Law
  • Little's Law (Example)
  • Practice Problems: Little's Law
  • Process Flow Diagram
  • Applying Little's Law
  • Little's Law (interactive exercise)
  • Graded Homework Session 2

Week 3 Process Analysis
Cover the basics of process analysis, including developing a process flow diagram and understanding how to calculate process capacity and resource utilization, as well as the important concepts of cycle time and Takt time, both necessary for Lean.
Week 4: Setup Time Reduction
Review the origins of Single Minute Exchange of Die (SMED) and its role in Lean Management, and learn why reducing setups and changeovers are critical to process flow and lean manufacturing and how to design your process to minimize the impact of setup times.
Week 5: Quality and Productivity
Understand how defects and waste affect the production performance and the concept of Overall Equipment Effectiveness and relate again to the important ideas of Kaizen and continuous improvement.
Week 6: 5S
Introduction to the concept of 5S for establishing a work environment to support quality and lean: Sort, Straighten, Shine, Standardize, Sustain.
Week 7: Elements of Lean Manufacturing
Introduction to key elements of Lean Manufacturing, and how these relate to the previous topics, including Heijunka, Kanban, Jidoka, Andon, Poka Yoke, and Quality Circles.

Week 8: Course Summary and Review.

0 Student
Cost Free Online Course
Pace Upcoming
Subject Business
Provider edX
Language English
Certificates $88 Certificate Available
Hours 3-4 hours a week
Calendar 8 weeks long

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