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KaiNexus Blog

Everything Continuous Improvement

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How Software Supports Each Stage of the DMAIC Improvement Cycle

Posted by Jeff Roussel

Apr 11, 2018 7:11:00 AM

The DMAIC improvement cycle is one of the most widely used Six Sigma and Lean management techniques. It was developed by Motorola in the 1980’s, and it helped the company win the Malcolm Baldridge National Quality Award in 1988.

The approach caught on, and thousands of people learned how to attack problems by improving the processes that were causing the problems in the first place.

These days, companies across all industries use the technique to make sure they deliver high-quality customer value with the least amount of friction and waste.

Organizations that are serious about getting the most out of their improvement efforts and using DMAIC to the fullest implement software that supports the improvement cycle. This accelerates improvement processes, makes improvements more likely to succeed, and sets the foundation for measuring the impact of DMAIC.

Here’s how it helps at every phase of the cycle.

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Topics: Continuous Improvement Software, DMAIC

Essential Features and Top Benefits of a Lean Management System

Posted by Clint Corley

Mar 28, 2018 7:11:00 AM

Organizations of all types across the globe have adopted the Lean management approach to business. Lean management got its start in automobile manufacturing in Japan, but today it is used by hospitals, software companies, retailers, and even construction firms. Improvement management software is not a requirement to practice Lean, but as with any process, structure and visualization can increase the odds of success.

Our goal today is to lay out precisely what a Lean management system is and share some of the reasons that you might consider investing in one.

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Topics: Lean, Continuous Improvement Software

How to Choose a Kaizen Management System

Posted by Jeff Roussel

Mar 21, 2018 10:02:00 AM

Organizations implement technology to support Kaizen for a number of reasons. It provides structure for improvement, allows for active management of projects, forms a repository of knowledge, gives leaders insight into the health of Kaizen, and allows for tracking of results.

People who try to manage Kaizen work in spreadsheets quickly find that they lack the interactive capabilities necessary to spread and sustain improvement.

Use this free download to compare and rank different Kaizen management systems:

 

 

Continuous Improvement Software Comparison Matrix

Download Now


Download this free matrix to:

  • See a list of all features and functionality available in improvement platforms
  • Calculate a weighted score for each platform based on available features and your organization's unique needs
  • Make an educated, intentional choice about which improvement platform is the best fit for your organization
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Topics: Innovation Software, Kaizen, Change Management Software, Software, Continuous Improvement Software

How to Share Standard Work

Posted by Maggie Millard

Mar 19, 2018 11:22:06 AM

Standard Work is one of the bedrock elements of continuous improvement. In fact, Taiichi Ohno, the father of the Toyota Production System, once said, “Without Standard Work, there is no Kaizen [positive change].”

Unfortunately, we’ve seen many organizations create a Standard Work document, check the box, and move on to business as usual.

This does little to stabilize processes or prepare for the next improvement. In order for Standard Work to be effective, it must be widely shared and actively managed.

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Topics: Lean, Improvement Culture, Continuous Improvement Software, Improvement Process, Improvement Methodology

10 Things a Digital Kaizen Board Can Do That a Paper One Can’t

Posted by Maggie Millard

Mar 7, 2018 7:23:00 AM

Kaizen boards are a fantastic addition to any improvement program. They arrange information visually so that a quick glance provides useful information about the progress of improvement projects. They are popular in every industry from healthcare to construction. In terms of implementing a Kaizen board, there are really two choices. A physical board that hangs on a wall in or near the workspace or an electronic Kaizen board that can be accessed from computers or mobile phones.

While paper boards make nice artifacts, there are a bunch of things that only their digital counterparts can do.

Here are our top 10.

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Topics: Kaizen, Continuous Improvement Software

Lean Software Is Not Just for Manufacturing Companies

Posted by Clint Corley

Feb 14, 2018 6:26:00 AM

When people ask me about my job and I explain that my company offers Lean software, people who know anything about the Lean business management methodology usually assume that all of our customers are manufacturers. That’s not an unreasonable assumption given Lean’s origins in the Japanese automobile industry, but it’s also not true. We have customers in all sort of industries from banking to non-profit. We have clients in industries ranging from logistics and financial services companies to construction companies and hospitals.

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Topics: Lean, Continuous Improvement Software, Lean Healthcare

3 Arguments Against Kaizen Tracking in Spreadsheets

Posted by Maggie Millard

Feb 2, 2018 10:45:28 AM

If you are still tracking your Kaizen activities in spreadsheets, I get it. Spreadsheets are a tempting approach because you already have them, most people know how to use their basic functions, they’re infinitely configurable, they never get the math wrong, and rows and columns are an intuitive way to organize things.  

But let me ask you a question.

Do you use spreadsheets to track sales activity, inventory, customer support requests, and employee data? Probably not. You probably have a CRM, and ERP, and HR software.

Could you track those things in spreadsheets?

Sure, but you don’t because those functions are important enough that you want a solution custom-built to support them. You want consistency across users, you want data security and integrity, and you want active functionality.

If you are serious about continuous improvement, you’d want all of those things for Kaizen tracking as well.

There are a number of reasons that spreadsheets are a particularly bad fit for Kaizen tracking.

 

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Topics: Kaizen, Software, Continuous Improvement Software

The What and Why of CAPA Software

Posted by Maggie Millard

Jan 23, 2018 8:17:00 AM

Corrective and Preventative Action (CAPA) is an essential ingredient in many quality management strategies. The approach relies on the systematic investigation of the root causes of identified problems or risks. Corrective actions are applied to issues that have occurred (reactive), and preventive actions attempt to eliminate the potential for problems in the future (proactive).

Many organizations have implemented software to support CAPA efforts. While the methodology can be followed with or without technology, applications designed to streamline the process and measure results help companies get more value out of the work.

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Topics: Software, Continuous Improvement Software

How Software Amplifies the Impact of Kaizen

Posted by Greg Jacobson

Jan 15, 2018 12:08:44 PM

In 1986, Masaaki Imai founded the Kaizen Institute Consulting Group (KICG) to help western companies to introduce the concepts, systems, and tools of Kaizen. That year, in Japan he also published the book “Kaizen: Japanese spirit of improvement," which helped to popularize the Kaizen concept in the United States. He believed that “The message of the Kaizen strategy is that not a day should go by without some kind of improvement being made somewhere in the company.”

Most leaders would likely agree with that sentiment, but it is certainly easier said than done. In order to achieve daily improvement, there must be a structure for both supporting and measuring it. Without visibility into the work of Kaizen, leaders can’t say whether daily improvement is happening, nor can they take action to accelerate the pace of positive change. Fortunately, Kaizen software provides this insight and offers other significant advantages as well.

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Topics: Innovation Software, Kaizen, Software, Continuous Improvement Software

The 2017 The Lean Management System Blog Roundup

Posted by Maggie Millard

Dec 29, 2017 1:21:55 PM

As 2017 comes quickly to a close, we took a minute to look back over some of the blogs we’ve posted on one of our favorite topics, the Lean Management system. If you are interested in learning more about Lean management, or continuous improvement in general, this post is a great place to start.

We’ve curated our best content on the subject and pulled together some descriptions and excerpts.

Links to each post are provided if you are interested in learning more. Enjoy!

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Topics: Lean, Daily Lean Management, Continuous Improvement Software

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