Organizations strive to eliminate three basic categories of waste in their business processes.
Basic Waste Category are:
- Wasteful activity – Work that adds no value to a product or service. Eliminating such activities from business processes will help organizations cut cost.
- Unevenness – This denotes inconsistencies that exist in a business process. Unevenness and inconsistencies can be avoided by eliminating inventory and supplying items to the production process only when they are needed.
- Overburden – This is caused by an unreasonable or excessive strain on resources. It can be eliminated by simplifying and standardizing processes.
Among these three basic categories of wastes, Lean focuses on eliminating activities that do not add any value. These activities are further classified into seven types of wastes: transport, inventory, motion, waiting, overproduction, over processing, and defects.