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Muda, Muri and Mura concept

Total quality management can be defined as organized scientific approach towards continuous improvement of quality involving everyone in the organisation covering every function aimed towards total customer satisfaction. IntroductionAfter World War II till 1973 oil crisis west enjoyed period of steady growth and the market was sellers market. During the oil crisis which struck the global economy in 1973, Toyota despite reduction in profit continued to grow and earn just because of efficient implementation of TPS. Toyota production system focused on cost management and customer pull strategy. Toyota under the leadership of Taiichi Ohno and Shiego Shingo developed the concept of 3Mus or the big 3. Muda Muda means waste. Waste is any activity that does not add value to the product. Juran has called all the activities that do not add value the Cost of Poor Quality (COPQ). Taichi Ohno of Toyota Motor Company has done elaborate work on mudas. He has identified seven mudas which have further been modified to nine mudas. The objective is to first identify and analyze the mudas and then take suitable preventive action to eliminate the same. This reduces cost of production, enhances productivity, reduces the cycle time and leads to better customer satisfaction. Seven Mudas 1) Waste from overproduction- This is normally not detectable. The tendency of the organisation is to over produce to ensure no shortage occurs. In todays competitive environment product and services have a shorter life cycle. It also leads to piling up of excess inventory, occupying more storage space, excessive material handing cost etc. 2) Waste due to waiting time- Any time wasted for the parts to arrive due to improper line balancing or waiting for job instructions due to improper planning is a drain in the organizational resources. 3) Waste due to unwarranted transportation- It happens due to improper plant layout leading to things or parts being moved multiple times. If parts are not properly placed they are difficult to find which further cause wastage. It can also aggravate the alignment of processes. 4) Waste from excess inventories- It takes care of lot of inefficiencies like faulty sales forecasting, late deliveries from suppliers etc. In the just-in-time production system inventory is progressively reduced to increase operational efficiency. 5) Processing waste or useless operation in processing waste- Processing waste occurs due to inefficient process design and improper technology. This can be improved by proper method

study, incorporating proper technology, proper training to the operators, work study, single minute exchange of die (SMED). 6) Waste of motion due to unnecessary human movements- Unnecessary human movements can be eliminated by study of human motions, ergonomics and applying the principle of motion study. This includes the incorporation of simple human motion, proper arrangement of work place, proper location of operating switches, reduction of fatigue and prearrangement of tools and accessories. 7) Waste from product defects or defective parts- It is a major muda which cannot only affect cost of production but also leads to loss of sales due to customer dissatisfaction. Thus emphasis should be laid on process control or implementation of six-sigma which makes it almost impossible to produce the defective path. Eight and ninth muda are development of products or services or features that does not add value to the product from customer points of view. The ninth muda is waste of opportunities. MuriIt means fundamental or irrational approach to any field of operations. It looks for irrationality with four major approaches. 1) Things or activities that are extremely difficult to do and at the movement beyond the reach should be identified and eliminated. 2) There is futility in perusing the things or activities that do not make any sense or it is difficult for the individual or the organisation to find reasons for. 3) Eliminate the activities which are done without understanding the reason for doing or its underlying benefit. 4) Eliminate irrational actions or operations that cause undue fatigue due to lot of physical effort, frequent stress to body movements, mental fatigue due to unwarranted work place stress etc Excessive strain on employees can be identified through site observation and trails. On machines it can be identified as it will shudder, squeak, leak, produce defects and finally stop and thus effective measure should be taken to eliminate the same. MURA The Japanese word Mura means irregular, uneven and inconsistent. Technically, this word is opposite of heijo which means ordinary, regular or even. Either due to lack of interest or over enthusiasm we tend to deviate from the laid out standard leading to inconsistent actions. Such inconsistency can easily give rise to the irrationality and waste. Both the Bottleneck theory and Theory of constraints originates from the principle of mura.

The bottleneck theory states that the neck of a bottle or the least diameter of a bottle decides the rate of flow out of the bottle. This theory when applied to an industry states that the department in the manufacturing chain with the least capacity decides the plant capacity. The corrective action is strengthening the weak department by increasing its capacity by minimum investment. The theory of constraints also tends to be developed around the same principle of mura. The theory infers: The weakest link in a chain decides the weight that can be lifted by the chain. The objective is to identify this weakest link and keep on strengthening it to make the organization stronger and stronger and make it grow steadily. Kaizen also uses mura as a powerful improvement tool. However, instead of terming it as inconsistency, kaizen prefers to term it as discrepancy. It calls for identifying the discrepancy in 11 defined areas such as men, technique, method, time, facilities, tools, and manufacturing aids, materials, production volume, inventory, place and way of thinking. Once the discrepancy is identified, it is analysed and a solution is found out to eliminate or remove the discrepancy leading to a culture of continuous improvement. Understanding of 3Ms 3Ms is an abbreviation of 3 Japanese letters which start with English Alphabet M namely: MURI = Over Burden MUDA = Waste MURA = Unevenness ..The concept can be best understood from the following diagram:

Here 12 boxes of 1 ton each need to be transported from one station to the other with the help of a pickup of 4 ton capacity. If the operator chooses to load 6 boxes at a time and makes only 2 trips, he is overburdening the pickup and also himself. The short term gain of making only two trips, will be nullified by excessive maintenance of the pickup resulting from over burdening, this is MURI. The operator has another choice to make 6 trips by carrying only 2 boxes at a time. This is share waste which is MUDA as the cost of transportation will escalate. He may also choose to make 3 trips, but the loading in each trip may vary,

e.g. 1st trip only 2 boxes, 2nd trip 6 boxes and 3rd trip 4boxes. This is unevenness of operation and is called MURA While identification of MURA & MURI in production processes is somewhat easier if one takes a close look at the operations, the identification of MUDA is somewhat overlooked. MUDA can be in anyone of the following form: MUDA of Motion-Any motion that does not contribute directly to adding value. MUDA of Correction Any Repair is Muda. MUDA of inventory - Any more than the minimum to get the job done. MUDA of conveyance -Any conveyance is essentially Muda. Should be kept to a minimum