Manager's Toolkit: Point Balance Lean
The Point Balance Lean Assessment is a straightforward and easy-to-use tool that enables printing company managers to evaluate how “lean” their company is today and to monitor their progress toward creating a “leaner” enterprise. Lean manufacturing, or simply lean, is an extremely important and popular business improvement methodology. IndustryWeek says that nearly 70 percent of manufacturing companies have adopted lean business practices. Recent research by Point Balance and Printing Industries of America indicates that printing company managers are also turning to lean to improve business performance. In a 2008 survey of printing company executives, almost 40 percent of survey respondents said they were using lean tools. The Point Balance Lean Self-Assessment evaluates twelve criteria that are essential to a lean printing enterprise. These criteria include the use of lean tools such as 5S and total productive maintenance, as well as broader business practices and business attributes such as employee involvement and continuous improvement. Each assessment area is evaluated using five descriptive statements that are assigned a numerical score ranging from 1 to 5. Higher scores are indicative of a more advanced and mature lean enterprise. The assessment contains an Excel-based data collection and reporting tool and a guide in PDF format that provides an introduction to lean principles and explains how to use the assessment tool. The Excel data collection tool includes an automatically generated radar chart to graphically display the results of your assessment and a worksheet that enables you to build a radar chart to compare the results of two assessments conducted at different points in time. The assessment is available for immediate download. Upon checkout, the two files described above are available via download. They come in a compressed zip file that your PC will be able to easily open.