Monday, July 23, 2007

Just In Time Inventory

"For want of a piston ring costing $1.50, nearly 70% of Japan's auto production has been temporarily paralyzed this week. Blame it on kanban, the just-in-time philosophy of keeping as little inventory on hand as possible", WSJ, 20 July.

Just-in-time (JIT) inventory has always amazed me. I wondered who thought it up. An MBA who's never seen a factory, an earthquake, a snowstorm, a hurricane, etc.? I have always seen JIT as an invention of management consultants who have no exposure to the real world. If Japan ever got involved in a war, its industries would be crippled by this. JIT is and always has been a disaster in the making.

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