I don’t know how to handle this Business question and need guidance.

Draft a reply to another students discussion Board. This should be a detailed review of the students post. Here is the students original post you are responding too:

Discussion Board Forum #1

Corporations are constantly looking for a competitive advantage and one available course is incorporating a Lean methodology within the corporate initiatives. The Lean practice originated in Japan and is a broad concept that utilizes a plethora of tools including Just in Time (JIT) and Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) in an effort to increase process speeds, improve customer satisfaction, and reduce waste (Plenert, 2012,). One of the Lean “tools which has already proven theoretically and empirically successful for mid-scale production process is Value Stream Mapping (VSM)” (Rizky Wicaksono, Setiawan, & Purnomo, 2019, p. 2). VSM is a key Lean tool used by companies to fully understand a process and identify opportunities for improvement by recognizing non-value-added activities within that process (Plenert, 2012). Garza-Reyes, Kumar, Chaikittisilp, and Tan (2018) describe VSM as “a lean and visual-based method, which illustrates, identifies and measures waste that results from the incapability, inefficiencies and unreliability of money, machines, people, information, space, time, tools and material during a production process” supported by “flow diagrams and current and future state maps” (p. 171). The flow diagrams and mappings provide the visual identification of productive resources and activities, how they are utilized, and any wastes associated allowing quantification of process times, quick assessment of process state, and identification of improvement opportunities (Dinis-Carvalho, Guimaraes, Sousa, & Leao, 2019). Shou, Wang, Wu, Wang, and Chong (2017) describe the steps of the VSM as: 1) selecting a product family, (2) drawing the current state map, (3) drawing the future state map, and (4) achieving the future state (p. 3907). Rizky Wicaksono et al. (2019) further states that each process in the VSM should be extensively evaluated to be: “(1) valuable, (2) capable, (3) available, (4) adequate and (5) flexible in order to create lean thinking” (p. 2).

Due to the fact that VSM can provide the opportunity for organizations to minimize waste and improve overall efficiency, the implementation of VSM during the last few years has dramatically increased not only within manufacturing organizations but also in service and process industries (Andreadis, Garza-Reyes, & Kumar, 2017). A study by Garza-Reyes et al. (2018) indicated the VSM was the most extensively utilized lean method by companies with 75% of 250 global survey responders applying this tool to their processes. One of the most recent adaptions of VSM is to improve environmental performance through a focus in the reduction of energy consumption and environmental waste (Garza-Reyes et al., 2018). Other recent unconventional applications of VSM include streamlining construction supply chains, improving construction sustainability, and increased productivity in residential house construction (Shou et al., 2017). VSM has also been successfully implemented to improve heath care efficiency and customer care levels (Shou et al., 2017). As VSM can effectively applied in almost any process, Dinis-Carvalho et al. (2019) does however mention that VSM has some limitations that should be considered that include the “inability to represent different production flows, difficulty of being used by those who are not familiar with the tool, absence of graphical indicators for transport, queues and movements due to the layout, absence economic indicators, absence of layout representation, and not reflecting the bill-of-materials of the product” (p. 770). It is interesting to summarize and note that VSM is a great tool to identify waste and opportunities for improvement but it isn’t the tool to reduce that waste and other lean tools like JIT and TPS must be employed to achieve a decrease in waste and the desired process state (Andreadis et al., 2017).


Andreadis, E., Garza-Reyes, J. A., & Kumar, V. (2017). Towards a conceptual framework for value stream mapping (VSM) implementation: An investigation of managerial factors. International Journal of Production Research, 55(23), 7073-7095. doi:10.1080/00207543.2017.1347302

Dinis-Carvalho, J., Guimaraes, L., Sousa, R. M., & Leao, C. P. (2019). Waste identification diagram and value stream mapping. International Journal of Lean Six Sigma, 10(3), 767-783. doi:10.1108/IJLSS-04-2017-0030

Garza-Reyes, J. A., Kumar, V., Chaikittisilp, S., & Tan, K. H. (2018). The effect of lean methods and tools on the environmental performance of manufacturing organisations. International Journal of Production Economics, 200, 170-180. doi:10.1016/j.ijpe.2018.03.030

Plenert, G. (2012). Strategic continuous process improvement: Which quality tools to use, and when to use them. New York: McGraw-Hill.

Rizky Wicaksono, S., Setiawan, R., & Purnomo. (2019). Lean manufacturing machine using value stream mapping. Journal of Physics: Conference Series, 1175, 12118. doi:10.1088/1742-6596/1175/1/012118

Shou, W., Wang, J., Wu, P., Wang, X., & Chong, H. (2017). A cross-sector review on the use of value stream mapping. International Journal of Production Research, 55(13), 3906-3928. doi:10.1080/00207543.2017.1311031