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The Lean Benchmark Report

notified so that it can identify the root cause and take corrective action, potentially right on the spot.

Stacking Up Against the Competition

Aberdeen has developed a competitive framework that helps determine success factors for laggard, industry average, and best-in-class performers. Survey respondents were evaluated on five criteria: process, organization, knowledge, and technology. Table 5 allows companies to review how their organization stacks up.


Industry Average

Best in Class


Company just learning about Lean; processes managed manually; one or two workcells; some spreadsheet scheduling

Value stream mapping for current and future state either planned or underway; Lean production in manufacturing either planned or limited

Fully engaged in Lean manufacturing and extending processes into internal and external supply chains; suppliers and customers integrated into the process


Focused just on the Lean basics (e.g., the 5Ss); no organizational champion; no coordination outside of manufacturing

Manufacturing operational and performance improvement decisions based on Lean; manufacturing management commitment; some coordination with sales, logistics or suppliers

Corporate- or division-wide operational and performance improvement decisions based upon Lean; president/COO/general manager support; enterprise, or division-wide coordination, suppliers


Limited internal knowledge and information sharing; external trainers and consultants hired occasionally

Lean consultants (internal or external) leading target projects; informal or external training courses; informal information sharing

Corporate-led Lean initiative ensures that Lean philosophy and techniques are communicated via corporate education program; unified metrics and tracking of continuous improvement progress and results


Extremely limited: Manual line design, scheduling solutions and continuous improvement tracking; paper based Kanban support and modified ERP solutions for daily material back-flushing

Point solutions: Spreadsheet based Line design, scheduling solutions and continuous improvement tracking; modified ERP solution for material backflushing when finished product is produced and electronic Kanban support

Integrated solution: Lean design tool; customer Orders integrated with real-time scheduling and tracking of throughout manufacturing and logistics; production and delivery scheduling is dynamic; enterprise level continuous improvement tracking and scoreboarding

Table 5: Aberdeen Competitive Framework

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