Improving with Kaizen
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Kaizen is a Japanese word translated to Good Change, but the meaning behind the word is continuous improvement. Kaizen events are a part of the Lean philosophy and developed by Toyota. The event typically takes place during 4-5 days and aims to make significant change by identifying possibilities for improvement. This thesis is a study of one Kaizen event that took place in an American oil-service company in Sandnes, Norway. A case study has been used to compose a detailed description of the Kaizen event. A holistic approach is used to achieve a detailed understanding of the process. The scope for the event was: From Order to Deployment (Cash) The thesis aims to identify if the Kaizen approach is an effective way of making improvements. The event contributed to detailed understanding of the chosen scope as a multi-functional team was chosen to participate. Data was gathered through discussions, interviews, observations and documentation. The theoretical framework for this case study has been the extensive Lean theory together with relevant traditional theory. After analyzing the Kaizen event, the following results were observed: • Increased understanding of the process as a whole and an awareness of the connection between the different process steps and departments. • Increased dedication and ownership by team members. • Increased team-spirit and communication across departments. • Increased knowledge of Lean concepts and benefits, a new mindset focusing on improvements. • Financial results hard to identify due to the market situation.
Master's thesis in Executive MBA