Lean Principles: Definition and Origination

What is Lean?  At its core, it essentially means doing more with less.  Formally speaking (and according to APICS of course), Lean is a systematic approach to identifying and eliminating waste (i.e. muda) via continuous improvement (i.e. kaizen) for the purposes of reducing cost and increasing customer value.  The origination of Lean concepts can be traced

Item Numbers: Meaningful and Nonmeaningful

According to APICS, an item number is “a number that serves to uniquely identify an item.”  Every raw material, component, WIP and finished good must be assigned an item number for ease of identification, traceability, countability and costing.  There are generally two types of item numbers:  Meaningful and Nonmeaningful. Meaningful item numbers provide the following advantages to

Importance of Strategic Sourcing

APICS defines strategic sourcing as “a comprehensive approach for locating and sourcing key material suppliers, which often includes the business process of analyzing total-spend-for-material spend categories.”  A firm that possesses high competency in this area gives it a distinct advantage over the competition.  According to a recent study conducted by the Aberdeen Group1, Best-in-Class companies ranked their top