Taiichi Ohno Biography
Taiichi Ohno was a Japanese industrial engineer, recognized as one of the leaders in industrial engineering and designing the Toyota production system and just in time (JIT), within the production system of the automobile manufacturer. he was born on February 29, 1912, in Dalian, China.
in 1932, he graduated from the mechanical technology department of the Nagoya Technical Institute. later, he joined the Toyota textile and yarn weaving plant until its closure in 1942. that same year, he was transferred to Toyota motors as the head manager of the machine shop.
around 1947, under the command of the manufacturing workshop number 2 in the Koromo plant, made some changes to the layout of that area, which introduced machines in parallel lines in the form of an “l” and established the multi-specialization of the operators. two years later, 25662 trucks and 1008 cars were manufactured, and in 1950, with the beginning of the Korean war, the united states recycled part of its trucks and sent some new ones to Toyota.
“let the flow manage the process, not the managers administer the flow” Taiichi Ohno.
at the end of 1959, Taiichi Ohno directed the manufacturing and assembly department, where he began to use the Kanban system, which aimed to control the workflow in a manufacturing system through the movement of materials and manufacturing by demand. that same year, when the new Toyota plant was finished in Motomachi, he was named the director for that plant, which facilitated the implementation of the Kanban in the machine shop, press shop, and assembly line.
in 1962, Taiichi Ohno was hired as the general manager of Toyota’s main plant, which allowed him to extend the implementation of the Kanban to the smelting and forging processes.
Taiichi Ohno is known for the creation of the just-in-time production system (JIT). he believed that Toyota’s goal was to cut more time than a customer placed an order until the money was collected by the company. based on this approach, his objective was to reduce the time of activities that do not add value to production.
the projection of Taiichi Ohno covered two fundamental principles: the production at the precise moment and the self-activation of the production, the other aspects were a matter of techniques and procedures of instauration.
Thanks to the contributions of Taiichi Ohno, Sakichi Toyoda, and Kiichiro Toyoda, the Toyota production system (TPS) was created, which is an integrated system of production and management that included the concepts Jidoka (automation), poka-yoke (mistake-proofing), JIT (just in time), Kanban (card), Heijunka (leveling), Andon (manufacturing), Jidoka (intelligent automation), Muda (elimination of waste) and kaizen (continuous improvement).
“my biggest contribution was to build a production system that could respond without waste to market changes and, additionally, by its very nature reduce costs” Taiichi Ohno.
in 1975, Taiichi Ohno was named as the vice-president of Toyota, position in which he was until 1978 when he retired from professional activity.
After a time he held a position on the board of directors of the company until May 28, 1990, the date on which he died.