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Lean – how to improve profitability

We inspire our clients to view their world differently, to become passionate about change and to have the tools to make lasting and immediate improvements to the processes in their own areas.

How can a car be assembled in 120 minutes, but take six weeks to buy?

The tools that people see and associate with Lean are all methods of identifying value, eliminating waste and embedding a new way of working into a streamlined, ‘Lean’ organisation focussed on the end customer.

Lean is a philosophy designed to increase responsiveness and improve customer service by only providing what the customer values, at the time they want it and in the quantity they want it. View our Lean Case Studies to see how organisations have used this to rapidly improve profitability.

The Five Principles of Lean are:

  1. Specify what creates value from the customer’s perspective
  2. Identify all steps across the whole value stream
  3. Make those actions that create value flow
  4. Only make what is pulled by the customer, just-in-time
  5. Strive for perfection by continually removing successive layers of waste

This sounds simple, so how come we spend more time in an airport than we do actually flying?  All the processes – such as checking in, security, baggage handling, catering, and embarkation – have valid reasons for existing, but none of them meet the customer’s main need of getting from one place to another; so Lean philosophy regards them as ‘waste’ and looks to find ways to minimise them whilst still meeting customer needs.

Organisations grow, processes evolve, and people try to do their best with the resources they have.  This often results in ‘silo-thinking’ where each department operates in isolation, maximising resources internally but having no overall view of the whole organisation.  Lean seeks to view an organisation as a whole, making particular improvements in the overlaps and handovers between departments.

Lean challenges us to look at our processes differently:

  • Who are our customers? Both internally and externally?
  • What do they actually want?
  • How can we provide exactly what they want – with no waste?

For more information about Lean, and how it can help your organisation, please browse our Lean case studies, Lean training courses, Lean Consultancy information and Lean reference articles.  You can also contact us on 01633 271401, for more information on how we can help you reduce costs, increase capacity and improve customer service through Lean and other improvement tools.

View all lean training courses

View all lean case studies