Toyota Motor Corporation – Factory Tour
Toyota Motor Corporation is a leading Japanese car manufacturer headquartered in Toyota City, Aichi Prefecture. The company was founded in 1937 by Kiichiro Toyoda as a division of Toyoda Automatic Loom Works. It is the home of the Toyota Production System (TPS), a lean management philosophy founded on the two key pillars of Jidoka and Just-In-Time.
- Company: Toyota Motor Corporation
- Establishment: 1937
- Location: Headquartered in Aichi Prefecture
- Main Business: Automotive manufacturing
Toyota – Lean Characteristics
TPS, Jidoka, Just-In-Time Production
Toyota is the home of the Toyota Production System (TPS). The lean manufacturing movement is based around the management principles, tools and culture that Toyota has been developing for over 60 years.
Supported by the two key pillars of Jidoka (a Japanese word that can be translated as “automation with a human touch”) and Just-In-Time, TPS aims to offer high quality, short delivery times, and reasonable cost through employee creativity and intense efforts to eliminate waste.
It is designed so that machines and people alike stop production when there is equipment failure or any other irregularity in order for it to be immediately corrected.
Also, it improves productivity without waste by manufacturing and delivering the necessary parts at the necessary time in the necessary quantity.
A tour of one of the nine Toyota plants in Toyota City is conducted by Toyota personnel.
Facilities are set up inside the plant to give visitors a clear view of the operations and a true feeling of the shop floor atmosphere. Interactive training areas are also available to provide an indication of the extent and emphasis Toyota places on training its people.
The factory visit incorporates content on the two pillars of the Toyota Production System; Jidoka and Just-In-Time. TPS tools are explained through video and, where possible, actual shop floor examples of the tools at work.
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…
It was an inspiring week with great learnings around lean and how it is applied across various levels of the supply chain. The tour also provides a nice glimpse into the Japanese culture with its amazing food and friendly people.
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 lean study mission of Japan offers participants an opportunity to see what is possible in undertaking world class manufacturing. The insights that are possible on tours like this can really challenge what you think are the real key success factors for implementation and enhance the chance of success in your own journey.
I thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to learn the Toyota Production System from the source. I look forward to implementing the many findings in our plant. This experience has given me a different approach to improving our plant’s lean journey. Thank you again for everything.
The Lean Japan Tour was the best lean management experience I have had. I wish I had done this earlier, so I could have done some things differently. One learns that some aspects of lean that one thought one knew, really have a different dimension to them. It helps to see lean management where it…
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.