Definition of Kanban:

  1. Materials requirement planning technique developed by Toyota Corporation (as a part of just-in-time inventory system) in which work-centers signal with a card when they wish to withdraw parts from feeding operations or the supply bins. Kanban means a visible record (such as a billboard, card, label, or sign) in Japanese.

  2. Kanban is an inventory control system used in just-in-time manufacturing. It was developed by Taiichi Ohno, an industrial engineer at Toyota, and takes its name from the colored cards that track production and order new shipments of parts or materials as they run out. Kaban is the Japanese word for sign, so the kaban system simply means to use visual cues to prompt the action needed to keep a process flowing.

  3. The kaban system can be thought of as a signal and response system. When an item is running low at an operational station, there will be a visual cue specifying how much to order from the supply. The person using the parts makes the order for the quantity indicated by the kaban and the supplier provides the exact amount requested. For example, if a worker is bagging product on a conveyor belt, a kanban may be placed in the stack above the last 10 bags. When the worker gets to the card, he gives the floor runner the card to bring more bags. A station further from the supply room might have the kanban placed at 15 bags and a closer one at five. The flow of bags and the placement of cards is adjusted to make sure no station is left bagless while the belt is running.

How to use Kanban in a sentence?

  1. My manager did not want to overload us with work, so he told us we would have a kanban system which would be great.
  2. Sometimes when you are working with a lot of materials it is best to take a kanban approach to make things go smoothly.
  3. Kanban was the best tool to implement in our economic strategy for understanding exactly where our inventory levels are at.

Meaning of Kanban & Kanban Definition