Different Types Of Kaizen

Kaizen Types
Kaizen Types

Kaizen, If implemented in an organisation, is the responsibility of all the employees and not just a few selected people, there are many Kaizen types.

There are different ways in which the Kaizen philosophy can be implemented in the workplace some of which are listed below.

Point Kaizen

It is one of the most commonly implemented types of Kaizen. It happens very quickly and usually without much planning. As soon as something is found broken or incorrect, quick and immediate measures are taken to correct the issues.

These measures are small, isolated and easy to implement. However, they can have a huge impact.

In some cases, it is also possible that the positive effects of point kaizen in one area can reduce or eliminate benefits of point Kaizen in some other area. An example of Point Kaizen could be a shop inspection by a supervisor and he finds broken materials or other small issues, and then asks the owner of the shop to perform a quick Kaizen (5S) to rectify those issues.

System Kaizen

System Kaizen is accomplished in an organised manner and is devised to address system-level problems in an organisation.

It is an upper-level strategic planning method which results in some planned Kaizen events over a long period. It is in contrast to point Kaizen which happens as a result of identification of a small issue which is resolved in a short period.

Line Kaizen

‘Line’ in this context refers to a structured spreading of Lean from the point or discrete to the line. For example, Kaizen might be applied to a process (point), but also to the downstream process. Those two points constitute a Line Kaizen.

Another example might be in Lean implemented in procurement, but also being carried out in the planning department. Here, in this case, planning is upstream from procurement, and Kaizen is performed at those two points, which thus forms a line.

Plane Kaizen

It is the next upper level of Line Kaizen, in that several lines are connected. In modern terminologies, this can also be described as value stream, where instead of traditional departments, the organisation is structured into product lines or families and value streams. It can be visualised as changes or improvements made to one line being implemented to multiple other lines or processes.

Cube Kaizen

Cube Kaizen describes the situation where all the points of the planes are connected to each other, and no point is disjointed from each other. This would resemble a situation where Lean has spread across the entire organisation. Improvements are made up and down through the plane, or upstream or downstream, including the entire organisation, suppliers and customers. This might require some changes in the standard business processes as well