Lean in the supply chain: research and practice
Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Lean is a management philosophy that enhances customer value through waste elimination and continuous improvement in a system by applying lean principles, practices, and techniques. The focus on lean implementations and research had been typically a single company without extension to the entire supply chain. When the concept of lean is implemented across the entire supply chain, however, it is referred to as lean supply chain. The purpose of this thesis is to create a structure from theory and practice of lean in the supply chain, which will enhance understanding of the field.
The thesis is based on a comprehensive review of articles on lean in the supply chain using structured content analysis approach. The reviewed articles are classified based on the articles’ basic characteristics and contextual issues or ideas. Also, a case study of an aerospace industry was conducted in order to gain insight on lean in supply chain from a practice perspective.
Lean in the supply chain as a supply chain management strategy aims at applying the lean concepts to the whole functions within the entire supply chain members: suppliers, focal organisations, distributors, and customers. From the literature review and the case study, it is found that researchers and practitioners view lean in the supply chain as a transformation process in the supply chain which results in a transformed and competitive supply chain called lean supply chain. The studies show that the attributes and outcomes of the major result of lean in the supply chain (lean supply chain) help in better understanding of the field. Lean supply chain is found to be linked to the following benefits: improved quality reduced cost, improved delivery, high flexibility, reduced shortage, etc. Also, it is distinguished from the traditional supply chain by the following attributes: Long-term relations with suppliers, effective communication and information sharing, integrated supply chain members, continuous improvements, and predictability. The transformation and the benefits are linked to the implementation of lean principles, practices and techniques in the supply chain. There is no rigorous and general purpose process in the implementation of lean in the supply chain; however, general and adaptable steps can be followed. Choice and order of implementation of lean tools and techniques depends on suitability, situations, preference and familiarity. It is found that from the literature review that the research approach on lean in the supply chain is structured towards gaining in-depth knowledge of the field. The emphasis on the supply chain members; suppliers and focal organisations by the authors of the reviewed articles shows their importance in the supply chain.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. , 79 p.
Supply chain, Lean, Literature review
Other Engineering and Technologies
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-86725ISRN: LIU-IEI-TEK-A--12/01497--SEOAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-86725DiVA: diva2:580959
Subject / course
Master's Program in Manufacturing Management
2012-09-14, 2A: 877, Quality Technology & Management Division, Linköping Univeristy, Linköping, 13:15 (English)
Engström, JonLangstrand, Jostein, Dr.
Berglund, Martina, Dr.