Kaizen, also known as continuous improvement, is a long-term approach to work that systematically seeks to achieve small, incremental changes in processes in order to improve efficiency and quality. Kaizen can be applied to any kind of work. If a work environment practices kaizen, continuous improvement is the responsibility of every employee of the organization.
Kaizen can be roughly translated from japanese to mean “good change”. The origin of Kaizen occurred in Japan after the end of World War 2. Dr. W. Edwards Deming is known as the pioneer of the Kaizen. Dr. Deming was invited by Japanese industrial leaders and engineers to help rebuild Japan after World War II. Dr. Deming was awarded the Order of Sacred Treasure by the Emperor of Japan.
Kaizen Continuous Improvement Process are:
- Practical learning.
- All waste must be eliminated.
- All employees must engage in continuous process.
- Increased productivity must be based on actions that doesn’t require high financial investment.
- There should be transparent communication process within the organization.
- Actions should be taken for the points that are extremely important.
In the Western Civilization, Kaizen is divided into four steps: assess, plan, implement and evaluate. In the Western workplaces, a “Kaizen blitz” is synonymous with a concentrated effort to make quick changes that will help to achieve short-term goals.
Benefits of the Kaizen continuous improvement process:
- It becomes easy to identify the mistakes and change the process to rectify the errors. Thus waste is eliminated.
- All the employees are given purposeful responsibilities. This would increase the morale of the employees.
- Inspection time is reduced as the risk of errors is reduced.
- Customer requirements become important. Thus all products and services are geared as per the requirements of the clients.
Management and workers need to believe in the concept of Kaizen to achieve the small goals in order to reach the overall success. The practice of Kaizen will not only improve the productivity of the employees but also of the organization.
Enterprises must leverage Kaizen procedure to improve efficiency and quality of employees and organization. Besides this, human resource management software for HR can be used to automate staff management.