Outsourcing Functions Does Not Equal "Lean?
More misuse of the word “lean” (hat tip to Michael for forwarding the press release) titled, “Economy Drives Manufacturers To Go Lean; Outsource More Non-Core Functions.“
Blerg… probably not “lean” as in “lean manufacturing” or “lean thinking.” This probably means “lean” in terms of “less.” The subtitle reads:
ATS and Nielsen survey shows majority of manufacturing executives would outsource maintenance to help factories run better
Is this about running better or just slashing costs?
In the survey of 100 U.S. senior manufacturing executives, with titles of CEO, CIO, Vice President and Plant Manager, two-thirds said they would outsource maintenance as a hedge against a down turn in the economy.
So what does this have to do with true Lean principles. How does outsourcing prevent waste? Does working with an outsourced firm actually increase the complexity of getting things maintained and fixed?
“ATS has helped our factory run better”, said Glenn Kormanik, Vice President and General Manager of Service Heat Treating of Milwaukee, WI. “Our plans for growth would have been stopped in their tracks had we not begun to implement a world class maintenance program with ATS. Doing so has helped us to compete for what little business there is today but also ensure we're able to meet increased demand once the recession is past.”
So they had to outsource it to learn how to do maintenance properly? That's not “Lean,” that just proves that the company didn't want to learn how to do it properly themselves.
Enough of this “fake lean” stuff. Maybe it's “Lean As Mistakenly Explained”?