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Technische Universität München (Technical University of Munich)

Lean Production

Technische Universität München (Technical University of Munich) via edX


Learn about Lean Management, a customer-centric methodology that improves processes by eliminating waste and focusing on value-added tasks.

This course will introduce the main tenets of the Toyota Production System, which includes Just-in-Time manufacturing, quality management tools, and the critical concept of Kaizen, the Japanese practice of continuous improvement. You will also learn about the key organization and managerial approaches that are used in Lean.

You will learn how to analyze process flows in order to establish process capacity and identify the process bottleneck. You will then calculate resource utilization and cycle time to evaluate the impact of set up times, batching, defects and reworks on key process performance measures, including inventory, flow rate and flow time.

We will also discuss the impact of key concepts of Lean, including Heijunka, Kanban, Jidoka, Andon, Poka Yoke, and 5S, which help achieve increased productivity and quality.

Upon successful completion of this program, learners will earn the TUM Lean and Six Sigma Yellow Belt certification, confirming mastery of Lean Six Sigma fundamentals to a Green Belt level. The material is based on the American Society for Quality ( Body of Knowledge up to a Green Belt Level. The Professional Certificate is designed as preparation for a Lean Six Sigma Green Belt exam.


Week 1: Introduction: Identification of Waste
Understand the basic differences between craft production and mass production. Review the history of Lean Production, focusing on Japan's Toyota Production System as an alternative to mass production. Discuss how waste impacts productivity and describe Taiichi Ohno’s famous 7 Wastes.

Week 2: Understanding Flow: Capacity Analysis
Cover the basics of process analysis, including understanding how to calculate process capacity and resource utilization, as well as the important concepts of cycle time and takt time. Understand the relationship between inventory, a waste, is directly related to the flow time in a system through Little’s Law. Understand how variability in a system causes queuing or waiting. even if there is enough capacity on average.

Week 3: Continuous Flow: Setup Time Reduction
Calculate the impact of setups on capacity when the product variety is increased and understand how batching can improve this, but at the expense of increased inventory. Review the Single Minute Exchange of Die (SMED), and learn why reducing setups and changeovers are critical to Lean manufacturing. Discuss the concept of Total Productive Maintenance and calculate the metric Overall Equipment Efficiency.

Week 4: Improving Flow: Workplace Organisation and Visualization
Introduction to the concepts of Workplace Visualization and Organization and 5S for improving and maintaining continuous flow in Lean Production.

Week 5: Maintaining Flow: Establishing Pull Systems and Scheduling
Define the key principle from the Toyota Production System, Just-In-Time (JIT)and the significance that JIT has for Lean Production in reducing waste and meeting customer demand. Review the relevant components of production planning and how these affect Production Scheduling, the heart of Lean Production. Understand, with the help of reduced setup time, how Mixed-Model Scheduling achieves a match between production and customer and how Pull systems can be realized using Kanbans.

Week 6: Quality and Continuous Improvement
Calculate the impact defects have on our flow rate. Understand how Poka Yokecan help fool-proof our processes and learn how to structure and run a Kaizen Blitzto bring about rapid improvement opportunities for problem-solving and process improvements. Consider the central role of Continuous Improvement in Lean Production by comparing the set of management principles, The Toyota Way 2001, and Jeffrey Liker’s 14 Management Principles.

Taught by

Martin Grunow and Holly Ott


4.9 rating, based on 929 Class Central reviews

4.7 rating at edX based on 51 ratings

Start your review of Lean Production

  • What an experience! First of all, I would like to thank all lecturers and guest lecturers for this course (Lean Production) for their valuable materials. They all made this course possible for their vast knowledge and experience in the area(s) the…
  • My names is Sylvestre DUSABIMANA from Rwanda,
    I work in aviation industry as Airport Duty Manager, and in charge of Airport Operations Safety.
    In this course, I have learnt about 7 waste and how to reduce them,
    I also learnt about process capability analysis and value stream analysis, just to name few. The acquired skills through this course and will help us at workplace to improve our service process capabilities by eliminating waste and non-value adding steps in the passengers process flow. All in consideration of best passenger experience within our Airports.
  • Hello, my name is Christian Salinas, I am an industrial engineering student and I am from El Salvador. I really liked this course a lot, it has a lot of topics that help you see things in different ways. I would like to mention a little about what most catches my attention, I think it is very important to keep 7 Wastes in mind in every opportunity that comes our way and thus improve productivity, thanks to the classes it is easy to remember them. 5S is also very important as it is of great help in any organization and even in ourselves with our styles of life. Finally, the Visual Management part I think is something that should call everyone's attention because it can be immediately put into practice and helps us to use our imagination.
  • Anonymous
    As the Head of Operations at an IT Billing Company, I approached the Lean Production course on edX with a specific goal: to refine our workflow, reduce waste, and enhance value to our customers. This course has not only met but exceeded my expectati…
  • Hi, I am Anubha Asthana from India. I am currently working for Globallogic Technologies Pvt. Ltd. as Quality Analyst on the project of Google. The three specific things I learned in the course were: 1. Ample amount of information and learning. For…
  • Very effective with example of real industry problems and very much supportive even though its online course but all question raised in discussion has been answered promptly. I have implemented 3M's in truck workshop and process is more efficient now.
  • I am ashamed to admit that coming into this course I had no idea what Lean Production was and was only taking the course as it was part of the Six Sigma Yellow Belt certification program that I was interested in obtaining. I could not be happier wit…
  • Anonymous
    My Name is Olivier from Rwanda and I work in Ampersand Rwanda ltd. This course is more important for me, because I have learned so many things which will help me in my daily activities as I am working in production. First of all I have learn more a…
  • Anonymous
    The professor Holly Ott understands what a S.M.A.R.T (specific measurable attainable realistic time) quality objective actually is for a each of her lectures. Furthermore she follows the 3E( FEMA Reinforcing the perception of fair treatment 3E) of…
  • Vishnu A Nair


    Quality Manager( E-commerce)

    I learned how to look into problems and solve them in a lean production way. A big thanks to the course and lecturers.

    5 wastes in production. This was a major concern in my factory. Now I can study each waste and solve it gradually. Also, 5s which was implemented was not sustained. Now, 5s is active :)

  • I finally completed this series. it took me about one year of part-time studying.. before enrolling to the TUM Lean Six Sigma bundle I searched the internet for almost every training providers, but I never found anything that matches the content, volume, practical application, and effectiveness of this course!
    I would like to thank Dr. Holly, Dr. Martin, Dr. Reiner, Mr. Zubair, and the rest of the team for their great efforts and dedication towards making this course. It is an affordable course yet it is priceless considering the learning outcomes!
  • Anonymous
    Hello everyone, this is Fernando de la Torre, from Guatemala, Lean Production is a very recommended course for anyone who wants to review and learn concepts for production in a pull system. It's very important to understand what is productivity and…
  • My name is Rony Tabari and I am from Indonesia, I am currently undertaking a role as an Operations Improvement Advisor for Phu Bia Mining (PBM) with operations in Laos as one of the producing assets for PanAust in South East Asia. Again, first of a…
  • Ivan Sapojinets
    This course clearly demonstrated the typical problematic stages of production and provided applicable tools for optimizing production processes. Although the calculations are extremely simple and do not account for many external factors, the course…
  • Anonymous
    I recently completed an online Lean course and I must say, it was an excellent experience. The course was very well-structured and the content was presented in a clear and concise manner, making it easy to follow and understand. One of the things t…
  • Anonymous
    The courses are interesting and provide integrated information regarding the Lean Production.
    The topic about Waste categories and reduction includes good examples that can be easy understood even for students that do not belong to engineering.
    Workplace Organization and Visualisation with combination the 5S methodology give a significant role to small things occuring in the workplace, that should not be neglected, differently those small things will produce deffects, waste and costs.
    Lastly, the recap about the similarities, differences about Lean and SixSigma as well as the combination of them in industries, give a clear picture about the use, benefits, advantages and disadvantages of each methodology.
  • Anonymous
    My name is Antonio Yamada. I am from Peru, but I have been living in Brazil since 2008. I have been working in a Dutch company which convert wastewater in value resources as biogas.
    I really enjoyed the course, it was very didactive and easy to understand with a lot of examples to clarify the ideas and facilitate the understanding. I am very greatful with the staff from Technical University of Munich and specially with Professor Holly Ott for sharing their knowledge in lean production and help us to improve our professional skills and make the world better with more quality.
  • Profile image for Maria Roma
    Maria Roma
    Hello , my name is Maria and I am from MA, USA. I have taken several courses in lean production in my 25+ year career in operations, process engineering, new product development and project management. I thought that this course will just be a repea…
  • Anonymous
    Name: Pedro

    I'am a 18 years old, so I just start to work.

    I'am from Brazil, here we don't are reference in manufacturing. During the course I learned a lot of tool to improve flow, reduce waste, standardize work... but I also learn a new phylosofi that consist in quality on the product and process. Some of these tool already is discused here, but many oders are unkown. The idea of only how much is needed when is needed enchanted me, this do not only reduce cost and waste, but contributes for a ESG metodology.

    Finally a would like to thank all the peopple envolded on the creation and manegment of this course, congratulations for all of you, made a excellent course.

  • Profile image for Daniel Alejandro Rey De Castro Gutierrez
    Daniel Alejandro Rey De Castro Gutierrez
    Hello! My name is Daniel Alejandro Rey de Castro Gutierrez, I am a Chemical Engineering graduate from the National University of Engineering in Lima, Peru and I have recently finished the Lean Production course via eDx. This course has truly given…

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