Visual Management

Visual management refers to the form of communication implemented by giving a visual overview of manufacturing operations. With visual management, all the shop flow processes are turned into visual data that every relevant stakeholder can look at and understand. Some refer to it as the manufacturing scoreboard that anyone can look at to clearly understand what is happening in the factory. 

Visual management is one of the lean manufacturing strategies used together with the 5S (set, sort, shine, standardize, sustain) audit to improve the functioning and organization of the workplace.

Functions of visual management 

1. Process transparency

When all the critical information about the processes in the factory is laid out on a visual scoreboard, it is much easier for everyone in the company to know what is going on. Through process transparency, visual management smoothens the flow of information between frontline workers, managers, and other relevant stakeholders that may want to learn about the processes in the factory. 

2. Job facilitation

Visual management is usually implemented with the 5s audit principle to improve order in the workspace. For instance, visual illustrations can be used to represent the location of the different tools. This reduces the non-value addition actions, such as searching for tools.

3. Discipline

Visual illustrations can enable operators to follow the correct procedures of doing certain operations. This instills discipline in following standardized procedures. 

4. On Job training

When information about the different production processes is represented with illustrations on the wall, it is much easier for new employees to know what to do. This will also minimize the destructions that would have occurred if new operators constantly had to ask the old ones how to do certain things. 

Types of visual management

Visual management using tools and parts

This involves representing the location of the different tools using illustrations, making it easier to detect missing tools. It is also much easier to locate the tools you need when their location is mapped out visually.

Visual management by factory layout

It involves creating a visual layout of the shop floor to make it easier for operators to know which stage of production they are at any given moment. It also makes Gemba walks easier for managers. 

Visual management using markings 

It involves using labels and signs in specific areas of the shop flow to let operators know what actions to take, where to locate a particular item, restricted floor shop areas, and safety guidelines. 

Visual management using data displays 

This form of visual management involves installing displays in the different sections of the shop floor. These displays can be used to show information such as KPIs and real-time analytics regarding the performance of the shop floor.  

Reasons for implementing visual management

  • It creates a safer working environment
  • It improves process efficiency
  • It facilitates a seamless flow of information in the factory
  • It helps in minimizing waste, especially time-related waste
  • It eases the orientation of new factory employees in the company 

In this article

Level up your knowledge with these interesting articles

What is First Pass Yield – And How Can It Improve Manufacturing Output Quality and Productivity?

Manufacturers – Did you know that First Pass Yield can help improve your output quality and productivity? By understanding the concept and implementing the right tools, you can ensure that your processes are optimized for the best possible results. Imagine having the ability to make the most out of your manufacturing processes and reduce waste. Read our latest article on First Pass Yield and discover how you can make the most out of your manufacturing processes today.

Read More »
kamishibai board

How to Enhance Your Production Efficiency with a Kamishibai Board

Do you use a Kamishibai board in your workplace? This unique tool, first developed in Japan, can be used to improve efficiency and productivity. For production and manufacturing teams, this visual tool can be an invaluable asset. Here’s everything you need to know about using a Kamishibai board in your workplace.

Read More »
ISO 9001:2015

Why Is ISO 9001 Compliance So Important for Manufacturing?

ISO 9001 is a quality management system that provides guidance for businesses. It can help improve quality management practices, reduce costs, and increase customer satisfaction. If you’re looking to improve your business, ISO 9001 certification is a great place to start. Read our latest blog post to learn more about how you can get started.

Read More »