Waste is any step or action in a process that is not required to complete a process (called “Non Value-Adding”) successfully. When Waste is removed, only the steps that are required (called “Value-Adding”) to deliver a satisfactory product or service to the customer remain in the process.
The idea of process improvement is to identify and remove all forms of waste from a process in order to increase efficiency, reduce cost and provide customer value.
What are the 8 Wastes?
- Defects – Products or services that are out of specification that require resources to correct.
- Overproduction – Producing too much of a product before it is ready to be sold.
- Waiting – Waiting for the previous step in the process to complete.
- Non-Utilized Talent – Employees that are not effectively engaged in the process
- Transportation – Transporting items or information that is not required to perform the process from one location to another.
- Inventory – Inventory or information that is sitting idle (not being processed).
- Motion – People, information or equipment making unnecessary motion due to workspace layout, ergonomic issues or searching for misplaced items.
- Extra Processing – Performing any activity that is not necessary to produce a functioning product or service.
To remember the 8 Wastes, you can use the acronym, “DOWNTIME.”