Training Within Industry (TWI) is a practical approach to achieve and maintain standardized work. This program includes hands-on learning and practicing and learning essential skills for supervisors, team leaders and anyone directing the work of others.
TWI has a long history of success in both industrial as well in transactional environments. It is an essential element within Lean and continuous improvement programs. TWI generates cooperation and positive labor relations. It teaches supervisors in training employees quickly and in a good way. TWI is also used to solve problems quickly and efficiently.
“Without a standard, there is no logical basis for making a decision or taking action.”
TWI consists of the following three pillars:
- Job Relations(JR):
Job Relations teaches us the foundation of positive job relations. Developing and maintaining these relationships prevents the occurrence of problems and is predominant in earning loyalty and cooperation from others.
- Job Instruction(JI):
Job Instruction is designed to develop fundamental stability by implementing standardized work and protocols. This program teaches the method of teaching employees in the correct, safe and precise execution of their work. As is often the case, most processes are carried out by different employees using different methods. Job Instruction requires that the ‘One best way’ is identified and that processes are adapted to this way. The basis of stability is created because each employee carries out the same work the same way as another employee does.
- Job Methods(JM):
Job Methods develops individuals who are able to divide their jobs into the composed parts. Every detail is questioned in a systematic way to generate ideas for improvement. The improved standard is developed by identifying and eliminating wastage. Tasks can also be combined and tasks can be simplified.
All information in the SOP or Protocol is based on the best practices known up to that moment. Employees will always have to continue looking for further opportunities for improvement and optimization. 5S, Lean and Kaizen stimulate this process of continuous improvement. If an employee thinks he has found a better way to carry out the process, he must discuss this with his colleagues. As a team, they can then decide to adjust the standard.
Standardized Work does not have to conflict with flexibility and customization. On the contrary, a good example is the design of a new hospital. Each patient room is designed exactly the same and equipped for all types of treatments and care, which leads to optimal flexibility. The room is designed in collaboration with experts from different departments to ensure that special requirements are also included in the final design.