The initial principle behind the 8 wastes in manufacturing was developed by Taiichi Ohno, the Chief Engineer at Toyota who had a deep influence over the development of the Toyota Production System (TPS).
However, the original system only had seven elements. The eighth was added in the 1990s when more western companies started to adopt the system.
What are the 8 wastes in manufacturing?
1. Transportation – Wasted time, resources, and costs when unnecessarily moving products and materials
2. Inventory – Wastes resulting from excess products and materials that aren’t processed
3. Motion – Wasted time and effort related to unnecessary movements by people
4. Waiting – Waste from time spent waiting for the next process step to occur
5. Over-processing – Wastes related to more work or higher quality than is required
6. Over-production – Waste from making more product than customers demand
7. Under-Utilized Staff – Wastes due to underutilization of people’s talents, skills and knowledge
8. Defects – Waste from a product or service that fails to meet customer expectations
These 8 wastes in manufacturing are often referred to by their acronym TIMWOODS. However, as Paul Akers suggests, don’t try to remember the 8 wastes like that. There is a better way to memorize them:
If I over-produce, I have to transport all those parts and they will have to wait in inventory. While the parts stay there, they might deteriorate (defects), which will have to be reworked (over-processing). During that time, people will have to walk around (motion), wait, and won’t be using their skills.
What is ‘waste?’
Waste is any step or action in a process that is not required to complete a process (called “Non-Value-Adding”) successfully.
If Waste could be entirely removed from a manufacturing process, only the steps that are required (called “Value-Adding”) to deliver a satisfactory product or service to the customer would remain in that process. That is this basic principle behind the 8 wastes process.
Get started with your own 8 wastes analysis with our free template & watch an example analysis
Making sure people in an organization understand those forms of waste, and start to recognize where that waste lies in their work area, is often one of the very first steps of a Lean implementation.
If you are looking to make the 8 wastes in manufacturing more visible to your team, we have developed an 8 wastes analysis template sheet that you can download for free here to help you understand the process a little better (it includes a blank template for your analysis and an example fill in the second tab).
Here’s what a completed 8 wastes analysis example looks like:
If you would like more help with running these analyses and explaining them to factory people, you can always contact us to discuss your situation and needs with our team, too.
You may also find these related blog posts from our CEO interesting, too:
And here’s an interesting lean manufacturing approach to reduce waste: one piece flow manufacturing.