Value Stream Mapping

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What is Value Stream Mapping? Description

The Value Stream Mapping method (VSM) is a visualization tool oriented to the Toyota version of Lean Manufacturing (Toyota Production System). It helps to understand and streamline work processes by using the tools and techniques of Lean Manufacturing. The goal of VSM is to identify, to demonstrate and to decrease waste in the process. Waste is defined as any activity that does not add value to the final product. The word is often used to demonstrate and decrease the amount of "waste" in a manufacturing system. VSM can thus serve as a starting point to help management, engineers, production associates, schedulers, suppliers, and customers to recognize waste and identify its causes. As a result, Value Stream Mapping is primarily a communication tool, but it can also be used as a strategic planning tool. And as a change management tool.

In order to do this, the Value Stream Mapping method visually maps the flow of materials and information. From the moment that the products are entering the back door as raw materials. Via all manufacturing process steps. Until the moment that the products leave the loading dock as finished products.

Mapping out the activities in the manufacturing process with cycle times, down times, in-process inventory, material moves, information flows, helps to visualize the current state of the process activities and guides towards the future desired state.

Value Stream Mapping
The process usually includes mapping the "Current State" and the "Future State". These then serve as the foundation for other Lean Manufacturing strategies.

History of Value Stream Mapping

The use of waste removal to achieve competitive advantage inside organizations, was pioneered in the 1980s by Toyota's chief engineer, Taiichi Ohno, and sensei Shigeo Shingo and is oriented fundamentally towards productivity rather than towards quality. The reason for this is thought to be that improved productivity leads to leaner operations which help to expose further waste and quality problems in the system. Thus the systematic attack on waste is also a systematic assault on the factors that are underlying poor quality. And on fundamental management problems. The seven commonly accepted wastes in the Toyota production system were originally (reformulation by Jones between brackets):

  1. Overproduction (faster than necessary pace).

  2. Waiting.

  3. Transport (conveyance).

  4. Inappropriate processing.

  5. Unnecessary inventory (excess inventory).

  6. Unnecessary motion.

  7. Defects (correction of mistakes).

Peter Hines and Nick Rich have suggested the following tools (Article: "The seven value stream mapping tools" - International Journal of Operations & Production Management, Vol. 17, No. 1, 1997, pp. 46-64.).

Seven Value Stream Mapping Tools

  1. Process activity mapping. Origin: Industrial Engineering.

  2. Supply chain response matrix. Origin: Time compression/logistics.

  3. Production variety funnel. Origin: Operations Management.

  4. Quality filter mapping.

  5. Demand amplification mapping. Origin: Systems Dynamics.

  6. Decision point analysis. Origin: Efficient Consumer Response/logistics.

  7. Physical structure mapping.

Special Interest Group

Value Stream Mapping Special Interest Group.

Special Interest Group
Special Interest Group (172 members)


Forum discussions about Value Stream Mapping. Below you can ask a question about this topic, share your experiences, report a new development, or explain something.

topic Value Stream Mapping Plan Example
I need to compare a VSM plan example. Please share a case if you can....
Comments1 comments
topic Value Stream Mapping Software
In what way will a software program help with value stream mapping? What are the criteria of selecting the most suitable software program. Please provide help in getting answers to these problem....
Comments5 comments
topic Value Stream Mapping within Logistics Operations
I am currently in the process of mapping the supply chain within our facility. Having read both Value Stream Mapping (Tapping, Luyster & Shuker) and Learning to See (Rother & Shock) I should be focusi...
Comments2 comments
topic Defining Value Stream Mapping Areas
I am in process of implementing "value stream mapping" as a tool to serve industries. I am facing constraints in the implementation. After documenting the process under review and charting the presen...
Comments1 comments
topic 4 Value Stream Mapping Phases
The 4 Phases in VSM are: 1. Current State Map of material flow and activities 2. Future State Map 3. Action Plan 4. Implementation...
topic Value Stream Mapping Quotes
Challenge everything, assume nothing and continuously improve. Copyright Colin Holmes. This way, nothing is overlooked....
topic Value Stream Management in IT Services
Hi, I'm currently looking in to the "cost and benefits" of implementing value stream management in a global IT function. We have gone through a period of cost cutting and have further needs to reduce...
Comments1 comments
topic Changes in Behavior in Value Stream Mapping
Note that the realization of the action plan in VSM typically requires changes in activities and processes, but may also require changes in behavior....
Comments1 comments
topic Mappping Outsourced Activities in Value Stream Mapping
Hi everybody, I would need an advice concerning the mapping of an outsourced activity in the production of one company where I'm working on my thesis. I haven't found any information about how to map ...
Comments1 comments
🔥 Value Stream Mapping in Cement Plants
Since 2 years I have had some experience of carrying out VSM in Cement Plants. The Methodology for the VSM is defined by me, based on the type of Industry. The variable cost of cement manufacturing (...
topic Value Stream for Design Engineering and PMI
Hi everyone, I use a value stream process for design engineering that also works in conjunction with PMI's project management principles. For those who aren't familiar with these principles, they inc...

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Best Practices

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🥇 Value Stream Mapping in a job shop
I am currently working in a company where I have been told to implement VSM. But the problem is that its manufacturing activities are like a job shop and there is no repeatability. Is VSM possible in ...
Comments6 comments

Expert Tips

Advanced insights about Value Stream Mapping. Here you will find professional advices by experts.


The Idea Behind Lean Value Stream Mapping

Teaching VSM
Basically VSM is done to map the set of operations, required for a product to launch from order to delivery to the marke...

5 Lean Manufacturing Principles

Maximizing Value Creation and Decrease Waste
In order to maximize value creation and to decrease waste, the Lean Enterprise Institute has identified five principles ...
Information Sources

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The Role of Value Chain Functions, Quality Management and Innovation in Competitive Advantage

Value Chain Management, Quality Management, Innovation, Operational Excellence
This presentation firstly presents the role of functional strategies and the value chain in the achievement of competiti...

Introduction to (Sustainable) Value Chain Analysis

Initial Understanding Value Chain Analysis
Value Chain Analysis involves analyzing three things to identify improvement areas / projects: 1. Material Flow - The f...

Value Stream Mapping Diagram

Lean Manufacturing
Download and edit the 12manage PowerPoint model for limited personal, educational and business use. Republishing in int...

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Compare with Value Stream Mapping:  Kaizen  |  Quality Function Deployment  |  Kraljic Model  |  Value Engineering  |  Business Process Reengineering  |  Organizational Learning  |  Simulation  |  Strategy Dynamics  |  Value Chain  |  Just-in-time  |  Deming Cycle  |  Six Sigma  |  Outsourcing  |  RFID Technology

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