Definition of a Pull System :
- Pull System: Pull is a method for scheduling the production between processes according to customer requirements.
- The purpose of using a Pull System between two processes is to ensure that accurate production requirements are given to the upstream process, as opposed to predicting downstream requirements and scheduling the upstream process.
- Pull Systems should only be employed where ‘Continuous Flow Processing’ is not possible. Lean thinkers should endeavour to create an environment of Flow. Where Flow is not possible, use ‘Pull’.
How to implement a Pull System :
- Understand the Current State
- Identify & Address Blockers to Pull
- Determine Customer Scheduling Strategy
- Establish The Communication Process
- Train People in the Discipline of the Pull System
- Define Inventory Locations
- Start at Customer and implement upstream
Communicating Customer Orders to the Shopfloor :
- The customer schedule should only be communicated to the manufacturing process at the point furthest upstream - i.e. nearest to the customer
- Do not include rework or other processes that will cause the customer order sequence to alter
- Order-to-Delivery lead time will determine the customer’s inventory requirements
- Level the production schedule to the shopfloor