How to Reduce Over Production Waste Using Lean Six Sigma?

what is over-production as lean manufacturing


In this article, you will learn what is overproduction waste and how to reduce it in 5 simple steps of lean manufacturing.

Over Production Definition

Over production occurs when your company is making more products, commodities, or substance than is wanted or needed by its clients at that moment.  Since it implies the storage of stock products (held) in a warehouse for future distribution or sale in an undetermined time.

The overproduction is also called oversupply or excess of supply considers the excess of products being available for further clients.

In other words, overproduction is making or manufacturing more products before it is really required resulting in an unnecessary inventory or accumulation of material, resources, and financial capital.

Overproduction is due to the overinvestment – building over productive capacity, which results in unused (or under capacity), equipment, materials, and facilities which is unproductive, or produce an excess supply. how to reduce the over production

It may result in a price reduction and/or unsold products and potential downsizing of the company and unemployment.

5 Over Production Consequences and Wastes

Overproduction is the most dangerous of the eight wastes because it can hide and mascaraed the lack of planning, inefficiencies, and all other problems or wastes within your manufacturing inventory and processes.

The basic law of Lean Manufacturing and Just In Time required to make what the clients or end-user(s) wants when they want it, pulling only what is ordered through the workflow.  how to reduce the over production

When you manufacture only what is required you can prevent and minimize more than 5 wastes:

  1. expired product
  2. warehouse space required,
  3. investment of raw materials and components
  4. labor
  5. machine utilization and many others.

Instead, you can redirect all those resources and effort to supply the demand of products that your clients really want now.

The manufacturing of the products that your clients need now is difficult since you must anticipate somehow their desire and have a very short lead time to supply the demand.  Otherwise, you can move to the opposite side which is called Under Production.

In summary, lean manufacturing involves a good balance and coordination between your team in the areas of planning, supply chain, manufacturing, quality, and sales.  how to reduce the over production

Over Production is One of the Eight (8) Wastes of Lean Manufacturing.

Over production is considered the fifth waste in lean manufacturing because is a non-value activity for the end-user(s).

The eight wastes of lean manufacturing are: how to reduce the over production

  1. Transport
  2. Inventory
  3. Motion
  4. Waiting
  5. Over-production
  6. Over-processing
  7. Defects
  8. Skills – The 8th Waste

How to Identify and Calculate Overproduction

Here you learned that over production is considered those products that were not sold to the customers, but, also you can apply the same concept to your internal operations as internal customers.  This concept treats each next workplace as a customer of an earlier one.

The concept of internal customers identifies and reveals more overproduction in many other areas of your company as quality departments and others.  how to reduce the over production

Lean manufacturing considers all products, which were manufactured with defects and then repaired.

The following formula describes how to calculate the overproduction:

Overproduction = manufactured items + repaired defected items + not repaired defected items – demand

Types of Over Production

Exists two types of Over production:

  1. Quantitative Over production: manufacturing more products than is required by the end-users or customers
  2. Premature Over production: manufacturing products faster than the end-user(s) or customers are buying them.

The 10 Main Causes of the Wastes of Over Production:

The following factors can promote and trigger over production: how to reduce the over production

  1. Unpredictable Markets: Uncertainties of the customer needs – production just in case
  2. Manpower Utilization: use the full employees’ performance until the end of shift
  3. Raw Materials Utilization: use the raw materials until finishing them.
  4. Reworking Activities: A manufacturing process with a low yield of products or many repairing activities of defective products shall require manufacturing more in order to fulfill the demand.
  5. High Scrap (Poor Product Quality):  A manufacturing process with a high scrap level shall also require manufacturing more in order to fulfill the demand.
  6. Under Consumption: Changes in the economy (shrink in consumption, economic recession, etc.)
  7. Consumer Preferences. A shift in the end-user(s) or client’s behavior.
  8. Inflated or Incorrect Forecasts: Inefficient inventory management and planning strategies
  9. Big Lot Sizes: Producing large batches, either because your machinery and tanks are oversized or because your recipes and processes are over-designed.
  10. Large Change Overs: Long setups of machines and time-consuming process to change from one type of product to the others in your manufacturing lines.

How to Reduce the Over Production Waste in 5 Steps?

Producing high stock in advance results in high costs of holding inventory, but also is holding stock unable to sell fast.

5 Possible solutions to reduce the over production of wastes are:

  1. Make the product only as fast as the end-user(s) or customer wants.
  2. Hold the minimum stock required to keep your operations running. Carry just enough inventory to cover the bare minimum of expected orders. how to reduce the over production
  3. Order what you need for the immediate necessity and control the overproduction by only making what is needed, when it is needed.
  4. Improve your forecasting techniques and inform your manufacturing decisions.
  5. Build flexibility into your supply logistics and purchasing control management.

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Our Lean Manufacturing team could provide you a broad range of professional expertise implementing these techniques and tools.


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REFERENCES: How to Reduce Over Production.





Picture of Ramon Cayuela, MS, BS, Chemical Engineering

Ramon Cayuela, MS, BS, Chemical Engineering

CIQA President and CEO.
I've been working in validation engineering since 1992 with many multinational pharmaceutical companies. I love sharing my passion and knowledge with others. If you have any questions about anything (or just have general questions). I will be more than happy to assist you. You can count on the BEST customer service on CIQA. I go to great lengths to make sure my clients are 100% satisfied with their purchases and check emails/messages consistently throughout the day. You can rest assured that everything being sold here is as-described or your money back. I look forward to working with you!