ABSTRACT

Standard work is fundamental to the process of continuous improvement. This chapter focuses on the elements of standard work, including standard times, standard operations routine (SOR), and standard in-process inventory. It addresses the issues of how standards are developed, why they are important, and who uses them. The chapter explains the necessary conditions for successful development and application of standard work, and the role of standard work in continuous improvement. A benefit of placing work standards development at the shop-floor level is that whenever changes in operations occur, the standards can be revised immediately. The starting point for setting standard work is takt time. Production capacity can be computed for every level of work—individual task, operation or workstation, production process, or even entire plant. At the task level, the SOR gives the tasks and the required sequence in which a worker performs them in a given operation.