Step 2 – Topic 003

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How to do Value Stream Mapping – Part 2

This is a video by LEANLAB and it’s available on

The Customer Demand

In this video, we teach you the first element to draw in your value stream map: the customer demand. The first thing to remember is that we are here for the customer. We are doing this to meet the customers’ demand and give to deliver value!

It is time decide which customer you want to start mapping. If you remember the previous video, it was suggested to start with the customer and the SKUs that pay the bills. To select the SKUs you have to carry out a Pareto Chart and Group the SKUs in a product family. In the notes of the video, you can find bonus material on Pareto Chart and product family.

Now, let us imagine you have selected the SKU 5678 that generate income of $150.000 / year. These are the steps you have to follow.

1) Take one A3 sheet and one marker.

2) Draw a symbol of a factory

3) Write the name of the customer

4) Write the SKUs you selected

5) Write the demand (daily, weekly, monthly depending on the business) Once you have done it, stick this sheet on a wall of your office.

Remember! Do not use the PC in the beginning, when drawing the VSM!

Now, I will give you a Pro Tip! Once you have the customer request in front of you, call three colleagues that should know the customer demand and ask them to write you an e-mail with the last update. I bet you will be surprised by the answers. Could be the numbers will be very different. But are we here for the customer? So, if after this survey you discover that everybody knows a different number on the customer request you have your first kaizen event to carry out.

KAIZEN EVENT: ASSESS THE CUSTOMER REQUEST ON SKU 5678. Ok, after this video you should have:

A) Understood that the customer is king

B) An A3 sheet with the customer demand written

C) One survey about the customer demand performed and eventually a KAIZEN event planned.

Do not underestimate the misalignment of the customer demand. How can you serve the customer if four people know different numbers? In the next video, we will demonstrate the 2nd element of the Value Stream Map. The Process Box.

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