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Enhancing customer satisfaction using Kaizen: a case study of Imperial Tobacco Company (ITC)

Roma Mitra Debnath (Department of Applied Statistics, Indian Institute of Public Administration, New Delhi, India)

Journal of Advances in Management Research

ISSN: 0972-7981

Article publication date: 25 February 2019

Issue publication date: 11 July 2019




With rising income and changing lifestyle, increased disposable income along with rapid urbanization is boosting the country’s biscuit market. The purpose of this paper is to represent the implementation of Kaizen in a biscuit-manufacturing unit of Imperial Tobacco Company (ITC). Although the concept of Kaizen is not a standard practice in India, the company chosen for the case study has a prominence in the Indian market.


The methodologies that have been applied to implement Kaizen in the ITC are discussed. Why-Why techniques, fishbone diagram, failure modes and effects analysis, ABC analysis have been used to study cause and effects.


It was found that the yield was increased from 88.3 to 92.2 percent, which was a significant change, as far as the product line is concerned. The product complaints were reduced to zero with an added increased product quality rating system to 98.2 from the existing rating of 96.7. The product consistency was also improved as an application of Lean in the manufacturing process.

Research limitations/implications

This case study is restricted to the manufacturing sector, especially in the field of biscuit company.

Practical implications

The paper should assist those practitioners and consultants who have the desire to find a better way of Kaizen implementation in small-scale industries of India. The academia can also use this case study for a better understanding of the difference between the theoretical and application aspects of the concept.


This paper is an original contribution in the existing body of literature. It shows the application of Kaizen in the manufacturing sector in India.



The case was presented in the CII first national conference on SPC toward zero defect on July 27–28, 2017, New Delhi. The team from ITC Ltd – Biscuits Unit, Haridwar presented the case. The author acknowledges the team for their inputs. The source of the various inputs is from the soft copy (compact disk) of the compendium of the case studies compiled and distributed by CII. The author acknowledges the permission provided by CII to publish the case details. Few visuals/figures and the company details have been taken from the website of the company ( for the requirement of the case study and have been acknowledged accordingly.


Mitra Debnath, R. (2019), "Enhancing customer satisfaction using Kaizen: a case study of Imperial Tobacco Company (ITC)", Journal of Advances in Management Research, Vol. 16 No. 3, pp. 277-293.



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Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited

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