Poka-Yoke and 5S help with Chaku-Chaku, too
Poka-Yoke, which translates as “the avoidance of unfortunate errors”, is another tool that helps operators run multiple machines smoothly under the Chaku-Chaku method. Poka-Yoke utilises mechanisms that either directly avoid mistakes (hard Poka-Yoke) or point out a potential error (soft Poka-Yoke). When using the Chaku-Chaku method, only hard Poka-Yoke is taken into account. For example, imagine a machine that will only start processing a part when that part has been inserted correctly and in a precise position. This means the operator can move straight on to the next machine in the Chaku-Chaku line and will only need to return to the previous one when the Hanedashi mechanism has done its job.
However, Poka-Yoke is not just helpful when the rabbit chase principle is being followed, i.e. when every operator needs to have mastered every workstep. Poka-Yoke can also be combined with Chaku-Chaku when the sequence principle is being implemented. In this scenario, operators only take care of certain sequences in the Chaku-Chaku cell and therefore don’t need to take responsibility for every workstep. All the same, no matter which approach is taken, organisation and clarity are absolutely essential because the Chaku-Chaku method is based on processes that have become second nature and high speeds. 5S from the visual management toolbox is the ideal lean method for delivering these essentials:
- Sorting out and removing what isn’t needed right away.
- Setting everything out in an ergonomic arrangement and labelling working materials.
- Scrutinising and thoroughly cleaning the workplace.
- Standardising steps 1 to 3 to make them second nature.
- Sustaining your observance of the rules and continuously improving the workplace and processes.
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