Continuing from last week, our next extract from Adrian James’ new release ‘designed4devops‘, looks at ‘What is Lean?‘
Lean teaches us to look at the value we create for our customers and prioritise this over the processes that deliver it. It requires us to restructure our organisation and mindset to optimise the flow of value down the pipeline to the customer.
To understand what lean is, it helps to look back at its origins in the automotive industry. Henry Ford introduced the automotive assembly line in 1913. Production lines were a step-change in productivity over the hand-built individual products that came before it. However, that efficiency came at a cost, agility. Henry Ford’s Model T’s production line could only build one model. This manufacturing method continued not just in the automotive industry but for most mass-produced products. Changing products involved a new line or expensive downtime to change the tools to make the new product. Inventory stockpiles compensated for the periods between production runs, driving up business costs and increasing waste.
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