Defining customer and value in lean thinking is crucial. All wastes that do not add value to the customer in business processes should be eliminated. In the real world and related literature, there are various methods used to eliminate waste and improve processes. One of the methods frequently used is the value stream mapping (VSM). VSM is preferred since it enables to take the picture of a process. Moreover, VSM is the identification of all activities that create and/or do not create value in the processes, from the supplier of the product or service to the customer. This chapter deals with lean philosophy, lean techniques and specifically the VSM method. In addition, some examples of VSM applications in the service and production sectors are discussed and the findings obtained from these applications are evaluated. Finally, the chapter concludes with some managerial implications as well as potential future research areas.
Part of the book: Lean Manufacturing and Six Sigma