Taiichi OHNO and Toyota Production System

Taiichi OHNO and Toyota Production System

To study the elements of the production system of a large and highly successful car manufacturer

Toyota’s production system has been one of the most studied systems in the field of production and operations management. The core elements of the system, like JIT, Kaizen and Kanban were emulated by several other organizations around the world, sometimes successfully and sometimes not. Taiichi Ohno was the architect of the TPS and was generally acknowledged as the father of ‘lean manufacturing’, which was the western adaptation of the TPS.

The case discusses the various elements of TPS and the role played by Ohno in the design and implementation of the system. Concepts like JIT, Kaizen, Kanban, and Jidoka are discussed in detail.                                                                      

The case also studies the benefits Toyota obtained from the TPS, as well as the main challenges in implementing the system. It concludes with a study of the applications of the TPS in other companies and the role that it is likely to play in the future of manufacturing.

Issues:

  1. To study the elements of the production system of a large and highly successful car manufacturer

  2. To study the concept and application of tools like JIT, Kanban, Kaizen, and Jidoka and their role in production management

  3. To appreciate the importance of the human element in the design and operation of production systems

  4. To understand the challenges faced in the implementation of production systems

  5. To examine the differences between the Japanese industrial culture and that of western economies

  6. To examine the future of manufacturing and production systems

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