Consultants in Lean Manufacturing Á Manufacturing Strategy

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Manufacturing Strategy In A Nutshell


Manufacturing StrategyHayes & Wheelwright define Manufacturing Strategy as "A pattern of decisions affecting the key elements of a manufacturing system." There is more to it but this definition will suffice for now. Almost any discussion of Manufacturing Strategy can apply equally to "non-manufacturing" operations such as finance services or transportation. Simply substitute the word "Operations" for Manufacturing.

Over extended periods of time this pattern of decisions (Manufacturing Strategy) creates a structure of facilities, equipment, information systems and attitudes. It becomes "the way we do things around here." This structure then determines the firm's ability to compete and its profitability to the extent that these are controlled by manufacturing.


Every manufacturer has a Manufacturing Strategy , whether:

  • They know it or not;

  • It is well-thought-out or accidental;

  • It is consistent or not;

  • It fits Marketing Strategy or not;

  • The strategy is formal and written or simply part of the culture.

  • It imitates another firm or derives their own from their own unique, situation;

Here we introduce a series of articles on Manufacturing Strategy and Operations Strategy.  Our first article explores strategy; strategy in general, and, then, within the business context.

Manufacturing Strategy in a nutshell

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