Oita City Government – Site Tour
Oita City is the capital city of Oita Prefecture with a population of 470,000 and is located on Japan’s southern island of Kyushu. The northern coastal region of Oita Prefecture and neighbouring Fukuoka Prefecture is a base for automotive as well as iron, steel, and petroleum industries, and the inland area has many IT and precision machinery companies.
- Population: 470,000
- Region: Kyushu Region
- Area: 502 square kilometers
- Major Industries: Manufacturing,chemical and heavy industries, tourism etc.
Oita City Government – Lean Characteristics
Office and Service Work Improvement and Efficiency, Lean Government
Lean management started to be seriously applied to governments throughout Japan in the mid-1990s. As governments are not driven by profits, the interesting challenge in lean implementation is creating a need for improvement.
Oita City is recognized as one of the leading governments in Japan with a successful lean program. The objective of Oita City’s kaizen activities is to address the existing office and work issues within the City Hall to improve the service levels provided to citizens, increase work efficiency and heighten every employee’s hunger to change for the better.
Oita City calls its activities “Takumi”, which generally in Japanese means skilled craftsman. However, they break this word down into the sounds “ta” for tanoshiku (fun), “ku” for kufu (ingenuity) and “mi” for minna (everyone).
These activities are designed for all employees of the City to be autonomously involved. It is differentiated from employee suggestion schemes because those suggestions tend to finish at the proposal level. Kaizen activities, however, are conducted within a system with ideas that everyone can implement by themselves.
I attended the tour in 2011 and found the whole experience very useful to build on my understanding of Lean Manufacturing. For those having a reasonable understanding of Lean this tour shows in detail the gap that Australia experiences to world class productivity practices. Most interesting was the deployment of essentially the key elements of…
I am now back in the office in rainy Seattle and wanted to say a huge thank you, once again for making the lean tour such an enjoyable learning experience. There are so many valuable learnings and enriching experiences that I am looking forward to sharing with my team and colleagues here in the coming days. I…
Dear Paul, Ben and Eri, We would just like to take a moment to thank you for such a wonderful tour. You exceeded all our expectations for a week long journey – from your very professional approach and even more personal service. The week was extremely insightful, and we could not stop talking about what…
A great tour. Having spent over 20 years in manufacturing I now understand the true meaning of Kaizen.
I personally believe that understanding of Lean as the holistic concept and Lean instruments is necessary for all the managers in any business. Shinka Management introduced for us the origins of Lean Production and provided a great opportunity to observe real companies where TPS principles are both implemented and being polished daily. Important parts of…
I highly recommend the Lean Japan Tour – it provided a very good insight, was well organised and is led by guys who are clearly very passionate for lean and Japan.
The Shinka Management Lean Japan Tour is a professional development program run several times annually. The program includes a mix of lean and kaizen seminars, hands-on lean training and visits to several benchmark lean companies. For further information and program dates, see the lean tour overview page.