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.
One of the best weeks of my life. It has changed the way I see my production facility forever!
During the Lean Japan Tour I came to the realization that improving an organization is not through large capital investments alone. We were completely surrounded by examples of minor investments into small improvements that produced significant savings. The clever use of visual management techniques gave a clear understanding of the current situation and Ben who…
Businesses need every weapon at their disposal to help compete in a global market. This tour opens up more ideas and opportunities and is highly recommended to manufacturers, engineering or service related industries. Everyone can learn something on this tour! Paul and Ben have done a marvelous job of putting together an action-packed week, which…
I would like to give my deepest thanks for helping us end the executive program on a high note. This week has summarized TPS / VPS in a very practical and eye-opening manner. The lean journey has become real and exemplified through the many visits we have done. The coaching by Hattori Sensei, and by…
I thoroughly enjoyed my time on the November 2013 tour. I learned so much about Japanese culture and TPS. Despite coming from the IT industry, I was able to gain valuable insights on the philosophy and principles of Lean that I can apply in my industry. Ben and Paul are top-notch guides. Their wealth of…
I highly recommend the Lean Study Tour of Japan as an experience not to be missed. Having attended the tour for the past three years, supporting our clients, I have come away with new learnings every time. Whether you are new to Lean Thinking or well into your Lean Journey you will undoubtedly have an…
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.