Just-in-Time is a proven management innovation which is assuming international importance for achieving industrial excellence. It is necessary to understand JIT for improving the efficacy of your own industrial policy and management.
Almost all successful companies develop and implement strategies that will give them a competitive and strategic advantage. Any company that improves performance on a regular and continuous basis certainly will gain the competitive edge. Companies seek competitive advantage by emphasizing on performance factors such as flexibility, quick responsiveness, cost, efficiency, quality and reliability and service. Just In Time manufacturing is a philosophy rather than a technique. By eliminating all wastes and seeking continuous improvement, it aims at creating a manufacturing system that is responsive to market needs. The phrase “Just-In-Time” is used because this system operates with very low WIP (work in process) inventory and often with very low finished goods inventory. Products are assembled just before they are sold, subassemblies are made just before they are assembled and components are made and fabricated just before subassemblies are made. This leads to lower WIP and reduced lead times. To achieve this, organizations have to be excellent in other areas, e.g., quality.
The goal of JIT manufacturing system is to optimize processes and procedures by constantly pursuing waste reduction.
According to Voss, JIT is viewed as a “Production methodology which aims to improve overall productivity through elimination of waste and which leads to improved quality.” JIT provides for the cost efficient production in an organization and delivery of only the necessary parts in the right quantity at the right time and place using the minimum of facilities.
JIT enables one to conceive, design, implement and operate a manufacturing and supporting systems, as an integrated whole based on the principles of continuous improvements and elimination of all kinds of waste.
The continuous endeavor to achieve improvement, the detailed understanding of various JIT disciplines and the confidence which such a system gets into the organization, makes JIT so successful.