Lean is a philosophy and approach that stresses the elimination of waste or non‐value‐add work through a focus on continuous improvement to streamline the operations. It is customer‐centric and stresses the concept of eliminating any activity that fails to add value to the creation or delivery of a product or service.

Lean is focused on providing higher quality, reduced cycle time, and lower costs. Because it produces improved production systems, it is believed to increase production capability and flexibility. But in practice, its concepts can be, and have been, applied in all areas of a business. James Womack and Daniel Jones developed the term “Lean” in their book about the Toyota Production System (TPS), THE MACHINE THAT CHANGED THE WORLD.

Today, Lean is supported by tools and statistical methods that, although not as robust as those of Six Sigma, are an important part of improvement projects. For the most part Lean has been used in manufacturing, where organizations are applying Lean tools in service and transactional settings with great success. Typical results show dramatic reductions in time while significantly boosting quality. This approach is sometimes combined with Six Sigma techniques and referred to as Lean/Six Sigma (L‐SS).

Source: Guide to the Business Process Management Body of Knowledge – ABPMP BPM CBOK on Amazon.

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