Taiichi OHNO and Toyota Production System

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

Case Details:


Case Code : OPER043 For delivery in electronic format: Rs. 500;
For delivery through courier (within India): Rs. 500 + Rs. 25 for Shipping & Handling Charges


Japanese Management Tools
Case Length : 19 Pages
Period : 1998-2004
Organization : Toyota
Pub Date : 2005
Teaching Note : Available
Countries : Japan
Industry : Automobile (Two Wheelers)


Toyota's production system has been one of the most studied systems in the field of production and operations management. The core elements of the system, like JIT, Kaizen and Kanban were emulated by several other organizations around the world, sometimes successfully and sometimes not. Taiichi Ohno was the architect of the TPS and was generally acknowledged as the father of 'lean manufacturing', which was the western adaptation of the TPS.

The case discusses the various elements of TPS and the role played by Ohno in the design and implementation of the system. Concepts like JIT, Kaizen, Kanban, and Jidoka are discussed in detail.

The case also studies the benefits Toyota obtained from the TPS, as well as the main challenges in implementing the system. It concludes with a study of the applications of the TPS in other companies and the role that it is likely to play in the future of manufacturing.


To study the elements of the production system of a large and highly successful car manufacturer

To study the concept and application of tools like JIT, Kanban, Kaizen, and Jidoka and their role in production management

To appreciate the importance of the human element in the design and operation of production systems

To understand the challenges faced in the implementation of production systems

To examine the differences between the Japanese industrial culture and that of western economies

To examine the future of manufacturing and production systems


  Page No.
Richest Automobile Company 1
Taiichi Ohno 2
Toyota 2
The Toyota Production System 4
Benefits and Challenges 10
The System of the Future 11
Exhibits 12


Toyota Motor Corporation, Taiichi Ohno, Just-in-Time (JIT), Kaizen, Competitive Advantage, Toyota Production System (TPS), Kanban, General Motors, Gemba, Toyota Supplier Support Center, Jidoka, Toshiaki Taguchi, Jidoka System, Operations management and Production system

Richest Automobile Company - Next Page>>


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