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Article
Publication date: 7 June 2011

Phillip Marksberry, Fazleena Badurdeen and M.A. Maginnis

The purpose of this paper is to analyze Toyota's production levelling process in an attempt to understand the various social and technical factors required to produce to a…

4282

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to analyze Toyota's production levelling process in an attempt to understand the various social and technical factors required to produce to a changing market. Unfortunately, most outsiders who explore production levelling do not realize that it involves various departments outside of manufacturing. Consequently, due to the dynamic nature of production levelling many unintended social and management factors between departments makes cooperation difficult.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper conducts a case study at one of Toyota's automobile plants to examine the level of departmental and social integration that is applied when implementing production levelling. Based on observations, the problems of production levelling are analyzed and, accordingly, possible solutions are explored.

Findings

The findings of this work show that Toyota achieves production levelling because it is viewed as a company‐wide activity that cuts across many departments in promoting manufacturing consistency. Production levelling criteria include both the design and manufacturing aspects which brings evidence that manufacturing is limited in its ability to eliminate and reduce market fluctuation. The work also illustrates that Toyota reinforces departmental cooperation through its human resources policies, and many other unique management mechanisms.

Originality/value

The paper provides new insight on how Toyota achieves production levelling by considering a more holistic and social‐technical approach. In particular, interdepartmental activities are emphasized in achieving company‐wide goals that impact how departments agree to operate.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 22 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 13 February 2009

Hugo van Driel and Wilfred Dolfsma

The purpose of this paper is to disentangle and elaborate on the constitutive elements of the concept of path dependence (initial conditions and lock‐in) for a concerted…

5361

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to disentangle and elaborate on the constitutive elements of the concept of path dependence (initial conditions and lock‐in) for a concerted and in‐depth application to the study of organizational change.

Design/methodology/approach

The approach takes the form of a combination of a longitudinal and a comparative case‐study, based on secondary literature.

Findings

External initial conditions acted less as “imprinting” forces than is suggested in the literature on the genesis of the Toyota production system (TPS); a firm‐specific philosophy in combination with a critical sequence of events mainly shaped and locked‐in TPS.

Research limitations/implications

The empirical sources are limited to publications in English, so relevant factors explaining the path taken may not all have been included. The importance of a salient meta‐routine might be firm‐specific.

Practical implications

The study contributes to understanding the factors underlying corporate performance by a critical re‐examination of a much heralded production system (TPS).

Originality/value

The paper highlights the use of the concept of meta‐routines to connect the core elements of path dependence, that is, sensitivity to initial conditions and lock‐in mechanisms.

Details

Journal of Organizational Change Management, vol. 22 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0953-4814

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 2 March 2020

Nicholas Loyd, Gregory Harris, Sampson Gholston and David Berkowitz

Few companies have had the success that Toyota Motor Corporation has experienced over the past 70 years. Many give credit for Toyota's success to the company's famous…

1024

Abstract

Purpose

Few companies have had the success that Toyota Motor Corporation has experienced over the past 70 years. Many give credit for Toyota's success to the company's famous Toyota Production System. Companies outside of Toyota have tried to implement versions of Toyota's system as Lean production; however, few companies have experienced the success of Toyota, and none have experienced Toyota's sustained success. In 2001, Toyota released a publication entitled The Toyota Way 2001 as a set of globalized standards of the culture that drives the success of the Toyota Production System.

Design/methodology/approach

This research examines the effect of the Toyota Way on the implementation of Lean production outside of Toyota. A survey was developed and a study was performed on a sample of 349 participants with Lean experience. Structural equation modeling was used to test the relationship between the Toyota Way culture, Lean production, and achieving the desired Lean production system results.

Findings

The results of this research discovered that the existence of the Toyota Way culture has a significant and positive mediating effect on a Lean production system achieving the desired Lean results.

Originality/value

This research created a validated survey instrument that can be used to evaluate and understand the status of a Lean implementation initiative based upon employee perception. The results of this study support assertions made by Lean practitioners and previous research stating that culture affects the level of success of Lean production system implementation. While this may not seem like breaking news, prior to this study no statistically validated research supporting such an assertion could be found. Furthermore, this research defines culture very specifically as the Toyota Way culture as outlined in The Toyota Way 2001.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 31 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 January 1984

C. Carl Pegels

A management system which has been used in Japan's Toyota Motor Company for many years is described. The system is applicable to the assembled goods industry and is widely…

4379

Abstract

A management system which has been used in Japan's Toyota Motor Company for many years is described. The system is applicable to the assembled goods industry and is widely used in such circumstances in that country. It extends well beyond production and inventory control and incorporates a number of features of a decidedly Japanese nature. Dominant among these is just‐in‐time production which is examined at some length. Also described is Kanban, and several of its elements, which is an essential aspect of just‐in‐time production.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 4 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

Keywords

Case study
Publication date: 1 January 2011

Low Sui Pheng and Gao Shang

Manufacturing, Western management theories and Japanese management practices.

Abstract

Subject area

Manufacturing, Western management theories and Japanese management practices.

Student level/applicability

This case can be used in project management or management-related courses at tertiary institutions at Undergraduate and Postgraduate level.

Case overview

This case provides students with an opportunity to find out what make Toyota so successful in manufacturing through its famous production system as well as the underlying Toyota Way principles. All students are expected to understand the Toyota Way model with a balanced view that goes beyond a set of lean tools such as just-in-time. This case opens a historical account for the Toyota Way model by connecting with possible Western management theories and Japanese management practices.

Expected learning outcomes

It is expected to significantly benefit students with industry experience with the intention of initiating appropriate changes in their own industry and/or organization by applying what they have learnt from the Toyota Way, through bridging with Western management theories.

Supplementary materials

Teaching notes.

Details

Emerald Emerging Markets Case Studies, vol. 1 no. 1
Type: Case Study
ISSN: 2045-0621

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 February 1999

Moreno Muffatto

This article adopts an evolutionary perspective to analyse the similarities and the possibility of converging various types of production systems and in particular the…

5183

Abstract

This article adopts an evolutionary perspective to analyse the similarities and the possibility of converging various types of production systems and in particular the lean production model and the Volvo production system. The evolution of the Toyota production system is studied from the point of view of assembly design, work organization and automation. Then the evolution of the Swedish model of production and its influence on the lean model is considered. Subsequently, the question of similarities and differences between the systems is studied in light of unique aspects of the social and cultural contexts where the production systems have been developed.

Details

Integrated Manufacturing Systems, vol. 10 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-6061

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 13 April 2012

Anabela C. Alves, José Dinis‐Carvalho and Rui M. Sousa

This paper aims to explore the lean production paradigm as promoter of workers' creativity and thinking potential, and recognize this human potential as a fundamental…

4998

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore the lean production paradigm as promoter of workers' creativity and thinking potential, and recognize this human potential as a fundamental asset for companies' growth and success, being a major factor to face the disturbing and unpredictable needs of current markets, providing companies with the necessary agility. The authors believe these thinkers are the base for an agile company and learning organization.

Design/methodology/approach

The objectives were achieved through a deep literature review, starting with the Toyota production system (TPS) origins. Some industrial lean case studies were also explored to show that the adoption of a lean culture promotes a pro‐active attitude and behavior that are so important for companies nowadays.

Findings

This paper explores the association between lean production and the promotion of thinkers. For a long period, and even nowadays, it is common to consider the worker as just another production factor that the companies explore to obtain the maximum utilization. This was a result from the distorted knowledge of the Taylor principles and the Ford assembly line model, seeing the worker as a gear in the “big machine”. Lean production was seen, for many years and by many authors, as an extension of this Taylorist/Fordist model but this paper highlights lean production as a work organization model where the worker assumes a position of thinker, continuously looking for improvement and continuously looking for wastes. By reducing wastes, the company will be prepared to accommodate changes and will attain agility.

Research limitations/implications

This paper is mainly based on literature review and on some industrial case studies of lean implementations (recent or just a few years ago); a deep research is necessary on the cause‐effect relation between lean production adoption and promotion of thinkers.

Practical implications

Helping companies to recognize the importance of workers as thinkers will have relevant impacts through the reduction of waste and costs, improving quality and increase productivity and revenue. Also, for workers, this recognition means respect, self‐esteem and confidence, and, essentially, more satisfaction with work.

Social implications

With lean production and agility, better products will quickly reach society, contributing thus to clients' satisfaction. Also, lean companies' CEO and workers looking for wastes will lead to a reduction of energy consumption, raw materials needs and gas emissions (reducing pollution of air, land and water), producing only what is needed. Being satisfied with their work they will be happier contributing to the raising of the country's happiness.

Originality/value

The authors are not aware of similar research. The paper is meant for those who are interested in improving their companies' operations and workers' relationships.

Details

The Learning Organization, vol. 19 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-6474

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 12 October 2015

Song-Kyoo Kim

The purpose of the paper is to demonstrate how Toyota deploys Lean Manufacturing and Toyota Production System (TPS) for their automotive parts’ suppliers in Philippines…

1104

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of the paper is to demonstrate how Toyota deploys Lean Manufacturing and Toyota Production System (TPS) for their automotive parts’ suppliers in Philippines based on the case study and the literature review.

Design/methodology/approach

The methods to better understand how Toyota donates Lean Manufacturing to develop their suppliers include to review the general Lean thinking process and tools and study in depth the selected Lean manufacturing tools that are directly related with Toyota supplier development and to show the actual implementations base in the case of the supplier of Toyota in Philippines.

Findings

The result of the case study shows how Toyota donates their Lean manufacturing (TPS) methods to the suppliers. There are several procedures and various tools for the Lean process. But one procedure within the process and only some of the Lean tools are suitable for supplier development. The case shows that all improvements (Kaizen) during the Lean implementation should be directly intertwined onsite (Genba) and just a small amount of the Lean tools is needed in real-world situations. In other words, the consultation of the Lean implementation might not require the full package of the Lean implementations. More importantly, the consultations of the Lean implementation without deeply understanding the onsite are useless.

Research limitations/implications

The project for the Lean deployment for supplier implementation is targeted to understand the full procedure from the start to the end, but the case in this paper is only covering the setup phase. As the suppliers of Toyota, there are additional parts to be implemented (i.e. shipping management), but it is not covered in this paper.

Originality/value

There are some researches about Lean implementation framework, and only few cases deal with the actual Lean implementations. But the case about the Lean implementation of supplier development initiation which aligned with the Toyota Company is unique.

Details

International Journal of Lean Six Sigma, vol. 6 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-4166

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 25 July 2008

Giovanni Battista Dagnino, Gabriella Levanti and Arabella Mocciaro Li Destri

This chapter aims to identify the main determinants that define the architectural properties of network emergence and significantly influence the dynamics underlying…

Abstract

This chapter aims to identify the main determinants that define the architectural properties of network emergence and significantly influence the dynamics underlying network evolution in time. The identification and analysis of these determinants, as well as the dynamic processes tied to them, allows to appreciate the competitive bases and consequences of network morphology. To this purpose, using a complex systems perspective as an integrative conceptual approach, we represent networks as complex dynamic systems of knowledge and capabilities. We perform a comparative in-depth analysis of the processes underlying the emergence and evolution of STMicroelectronic's global network and of Toyota's supplier network in the US so as to allow an elucidatory empirical assessment of the theoretical representation elaborated in the article.

Details

Network Strategy
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-0-7623-1442-3

Article
Publication date: 6 April 2012

Phillip Marksberry

Toyota's management system, more formally known as the Toyota production system (TPS) is one of the most benchmarked business improvement strategies in modern industry…

11533

Abstract

Purpose

Toyota's management system, more formally known as the Toyota production system (TPS) is one of the most benchmarked business improvement strategies in modern industry. While many companies try to emulate Toyota's success using a variety of different approaches, most practitioners are not aware how Toyota replicates TPS at suppliers. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the in‐house capabilities that are transferred from Toyota to suppliers as a way to more deeply understand how TPS can evolve.

Design/methodology/approach

This work studies Toyota's supplier development practices by evaluating organizational documents using latent semantic analysis (LSA). LSA is a theory and method for extracting and representing the contextual‐usage and meaning of words and phrases by statistical computation applied to text. LSA is based on singular value decomposition (SVD), which is a mathematical matrix decomposition technique using factor analysis.

Findings

This work shows that Toyota targets processes, rather than whole systems, in assisting suppliers to be more effective at abnormality management. Findings also show that Toyota's approval process doesn't necessarily support major kaizen at suppliers yet does encourage minor day‐to‐day kaizen. Finally, this work reports that the Toyota Way for suppliers does not have to be adopted by suppliers, but does represent “A Way” to interact with suppliers to drive both culture and productivity simultaneously.

Originality/value

The paper uses a new method for analyzing Toyota's supplier development practices by mathematically representing and analyzing Toyota's organizational documents. This new method allows various components and features of Toyota's supplier development process to be represented and described in a way that offers many unique insights.

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