Value Stream Mapping (VSM) in Garment Industry

Value Stream Mapping (VSM) in Garment Industry

Shubham Anil Jain
Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Limited
Bangalore, India


Value Stream Mapping  or VSM is a widely used tool in process improvement and lean manufacturing. One of the most crucial tools for Lean Six Sigma (LSS), a well-known method of process optimization, is VSM. It is applicable to various industries, including the garment industry. The purpose of VSM is to clearly identify areas for improvement by visualizing the flow of delivering a good or service to your consumer.

Value Stream Mapping in Garment industry

Three steps are necessary in VSM:

  1. Make a current state map that depicts your process from order placement to delivery for a good or service.
  2. Examine the state map as it is now and look for methods to make your process better.
  3. Make a future state map that highlights the places that need improvement.

History of Value Stream Mapping:
Though many sectors have only lately begun to use it, value stream mapping has been around for a long. Mike Rother describes it as a small tool known within Toyota as “Material and Information Flow” mapping in the introduction to the book Learning to See. The 1918 book Installing Efficiency Methods, however, contains examples of older iterations of this tool.

Value stream mapping also grew in popularity as Lean manufacturing practises did in America. Its popularity spread to fields like marketing, IT management, and software development. The phrase “value stream” was originally used in the 1990 book The Machine That Changed the World by James Womack, Daniel Jones, and Daniel Roos. The authors’ book Lean Thinking, which further popularized the concept, was written by them. They defined the value stream as the series of tasks an organization performs to fulfill a customer request.

Due to their emphasis on the eradication of waste, Lean and Six Sigma approaches are now also linked with value stream mapping.

Steps to Carried Out Value Stream Mapping:

1. Establishing a Lean team or VSM team

2. Assemble a clan or a group based on the goods (product-wise) or services (service-wise). This means that while developing a VSM, related product providers or consumers should be treated as one big family to make it simple to grasp and visualise.

3. Use different VSM icons to create a map of the current situation. ‘Go-see’ rather than ‘hear-say’ is the preferred approach. This aids in updating the situation while maintaining the viewpoint of the client in mind. Future state maps are built on top of the existing state map.

4. A future state map is developed by brainstorming while fully considering the needs of the consumer. Here are a few brainstorming issues that are resolved at this phase:

  • What does the client need?
  • When will he require it?
  • What are wastes and how can you get rid of them?
  • How can the work flow continue?
  • How should interruptions be handled, if any?
  • Which process upgrades are necessary for value addition?

5. A possible step in the future – The brainstorming sessions help the VSM team get to this point, when they deduce the optimum state for the organisation to reach the suggested future state. It is an implementation strategy that covers all divisions, including R&D, Finance, and customer support, in addition to the key operations involved in direct production.

6. Should it be necessary, develop streamlined procedures and engage in continual waste reduction through Kaizen.

7. Holding Kaizen events, which stand for “continuous improvement” in Japanese.

8. Kaizen involves the process owners in its efforts and focuses on enhancing particular loops or departments, such as R & D, procurement, etc.

Benefits of Value Stream Mapping:
The goal of value stream mapping (VSM) is to identify waste and get rid of it so that value is maximized. VSM focuses on the customer experience, on what the customer values, and it detects and gets rid of time and resources that are ineffective for the customer.

Value stream mapping offers a variety of advantages. They include:

  1. There aren’t many initial investment charges because it’s affordable and simple to learn.
  2. You may see a visual snapshot of your whole production and delivery process.
  3. It enables efficiency improvements, assisting you in identifying and resolving process issues.
  4. It has a wide range of applications because the same technique may be used to apply the lessons discovered when developing one product or service to another.
  5. It fosters cooperation and improves communication and teamwork.
  6. In that it enhances the final product for the consumer, it is customer-focused.

Value stream mapping, or VSM, is a visual representation of the crucial actions and information involved in optimizing particular processes that involve several steps. Value Stream Mapping in the garment industry helps to identify and eliminate waste, streamline processes, and improve overall efficiency and effectiveness in the value stream. Value stream mapping can improve team collaboration and communication when done appropriately. It is crucial to remember that successful value stream mapping requires collaboration. To guarantee that your process improvement is comprehensive, aim to have three to ten individuals working on your value stream map. One of the foundational ideas of the management strategy known as Lean is value stream mapping. Lean got its start in the 1950s with the development of the Toyota Production System. Applying lean ideas to enhance processes now benefits sales and operations teams.



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