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8 Wastes of Lean Manufacturing

Companies will have between 15% - 50% hidden costs of resources spent or devoted to rework and non-value added tasks

· Lean Manufacturing,Efficiency,Shop Floor Control,Quality Control,Payroll

Eliminating waste is the main thrust of the 5 Principals of Lean. I’d like to delve into the 8 Wastes of Lean Manufacturing and how it relates to textile related production whether it is furniture, apparel, seating, home furnishing, or mattress manufacturing. The 8 wastes are an extension of the original 7 wastes as identified by Toyota Production System pioneer, Taiichi Ohno.

It is estimated that a company will have between 15% - 50% hidden costs of resources spent or devoted to rework and non-value added tasks. By utilizing our Shop Floor Control, let us help you find, identify, and uncover these hidden costs, digitally.

The easiest way to remember the 8 wastes is through the acronym DOWNTIME.

Easy to remember - DOWNTIME

  • Defects – Products that don't meet company standards
  • Overproduction - Producing more than necessary
  • Waiting - Idle time between steps
  • Non-utilized talent - Not taking full use of employee’s abilities, skills and experience
  • Transportation - Movement of materials from one place to another
  • Inventory – Supply in excess
  • Motion - Moving more than necessary, not adding value
  • Excessive processing – Performing steps that don't add value


By reducing defects, you can decrease overproduction, transportation, and excess processing. This, by far, is one of the most significant manufacturing wastes. Utilizing our “Quality App” coupled with our Real-Time Shop Floor Control you can quickly identify defects using a Statistical Quality Control (SQC) analysis.


Having the most negative impact on success, overproduction leads to other wastes such as waiting, inventory, motion, consuming time and resources. Using Real-Time Shop Floor control, you can better understand what your plant efficiency and capacity is for better planning purposes.


Waiting for a prior operation to be completed, lack of raw materials, unbalanced workload, all these can be identified quickly and course corrected immediately using your Shop Floor Control dashboards, KPI’s and reports.

Non-utilized talent

This waste is specific to manufacturing management as opposed to process. If the employee’s movement is aimlessly unengaged moving material around the production floor without adding value, then their effort is being wasted. Additionally, feedback from employees will add to the continuous improvement of the organizations lean manufacturing initiative and allow employees to influence change for the better.


Moving product costs money. This is one of the wastes that the customer doesn’t care about, though it is necessary to the production of their product. This waste leads to increased motion because resources are required without generating value. Using our engineering software, MODSEW (based on MODAPTS®), you can create the most accurate rate facilitating ergonomic improvement and methods while improving productivity.


Maintaining inventory requires the addition of wastes, motion and transportation. Supply is excess. Inventory is value that is being held at a cost. Anytime a product sits in inventory, its profit margin is reduced because overhead must be paid for it to be stored, raw materials as well as finished goods.


Unnecessary movement of operators or machines is a waste and doesn’t add value to a product. Inefficient factory floor layouts, improper equipment can also contribute to needless motion. Non-utilized talent is closely related to motion waste

Excessive processing

Not getting clear customer requirements and specifications creates excessive processing and possible repairs and re-manufacturing. Producing products that are beyond or under your customers’ expectations falls into excessive processing and is a waste.

Implementing shop floor control, you’ll be able to find, identify, and uncover the hidden costs of the 8 wastes of lean manufacturing, digitally. Your employees will be empowered by having them participate in the process while giving you better information to make better business decisions.

Let’s start a project together today!

Call or email us now for a conversation on how you and your company can improve customer satisfaction, improve plant performance, productivity, and profitability.

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