Value Stream Mapping Tool

The definitive multimedia guide

Lean Manufacturing PDF Lean Manufacturing PDF Lean Manufacturing PDF Value Stream Mapping best practice are treated in this page. Following this guide you will be very effective in Value Stream Mapping.

"Hi again!

Reading this page you will know everything about the Value Stream Mapping.

I selected for you the best materials, Lean PDF, Lean Manufacturing Video and best posts.

Probably the longest web guide ever was written.

Ready ... go!"

Value stream mapping is a lean management principle.

It is used to analyze and design the flow of materials and information required to bring a product or service to a consumer.

This map has to be considered the blueprint of "the best in class manufacturing" you want to build.

It is important, prior to startimg with VSM, to define the Products Family.

There is a quite standard method to draw a value stream map and there is a rigorous path to follow to be efficient in doing it.


The value stream map is a useful tool because:

  • You can see the flow
  • You can speak a unique language worldwide (easy to understand)
  • You can address the resources to the critical step of the flow
  • You can see both the material flow and information flow
  • You can bring the map on the shopfloor and everybody can modify it

In this video, Jim Womack will explain something interesting...


If you looked at the video now it should be clear that:

There is no point to do a Value Stream Map without a WHY!


when the purpose is set and shared among leadership is time to map.

An (almost) standardized way is used.

Here you will find the tips to be effective and efficient during the mapping.

The list of materials you need prior to starting.

Please collect it before the event otherwise you

will be there looking each other and wasting time.

  • A3 Sheets + Markers

    At least 20-30 A3 size papers and Makers as you can. Pens, Pencils, Highlighters etc. About the colours stay in 3-4 (i.e. Black, Red, Green). Everybody could write.

  • Moving Table (A desk with wheel)

    What I find annoying is when there is no a place to write in a comfortable way.

  • A little calculator

    You can use your mobile for sure. But I would like to suggest the old and good calculator.

  • A ruler

    Value Stream Mapping is a handy activity but why do not try to draw in a more technical way.

  • Right People Involved

    It is important to map with the people involved in the product family. I would like to suggest from 3 to 7 of different departments.

  • A good timetable

    If you want not to waste time set the hour of beginning and duration of this activity. You can start and stop on different days, too. Each step no more than 5-10 minutes of discussion/observation.

  • Let discussion flow

    It is important the every participant is engaged and give his contribution.

Common Pitfall to avoid in VSM

In this paragraph, I would like to show you how many minutes I wasted

because the consultant did not explain me correctly how to do a Value Stream Map.

I will treat in points with an explanation.

Each point is a Pitfall.

  • VSM on PC is a mistake.

    If you do on PC there is no collaboration. You do not see what really happens. You can lose the last edition of the file.

  • Do Not Follow just one product

    You have to map a product family. If you map just one product you can address people on that product and let the others slow down. There is no point with that.

  • Consider the VSM as a short term cost reduction.

    With the Value Stream Map you will assess where the opportunities are. The key point is the to be, where the organization would evolve to give customer better experience.

How many types of Value Stream Map exist?


you have to focus on the problem and then decide what you have to map.

Please never never never forget why you map.

Generally, you can have 3 level of mapping:

  • Process Level

    You have to carefully details what is going on in a single process.

  • Factory Level (door to door)

    You have to map a value stream from raw material to shipment.

  • Extended Value Stream

    You have to map the value stream out of your company towards supplier and customers.

In this video is explained in detail and

there are described the 8 steps to Value Stream Mapping.

I spent a lot of time to select the best videos for you.

Why do not you give me satisfaction by sharing with friends?

It is a second for you and great value for me!

The Value Stream Map of Deming:

Here what Deming defined as general flow in an industry.

Simple and Great.

Value Stream Mapping from Deming

To the make the flow diagram work, the flow of material and information from any part of the system must match the input requirements of the next stages. Thus, the aim in the flow diagram is for the material to come in at the front, and to emerge at the end as usable product or service. The flow diagram describes not only the flow of material, but also the flow of information needed to manage the system.

Source – “The New Economics For Industry, Government, Education” by Dr. Deming.

Here a very interesting article from Harish Jose on the Value Stream Mapping.

VSM - Another Point of view.

Value Stream Mapping

Here I will report for you the point of

 - A long experience Lean Consultant

Lean is a journey that never ends.

Chuck Intrieri
Senior Principal Lean Consultant

Value Stream Mapping or, VSM,

is one of the most important concepts of Lean Manufacturing.

Lean helps businesses identify the waste(s)


identifying opportunities for continuous improvement,


making plans to improve the flow of processes

by eliminating waste and reducing the total lead time

to improve throughput to the customer.

So, what is VSM?

It is mapping all activities or process steps involved in both

material flow


information flow

and analyzing all steps and identifying the wastes associated with each step.

At the bottom of the VSM,

a value adding analysis is done to calculate the % of value added activities.

It will be surprising to see that

most businesses will have a value add % of below 5 %.


there are some exceptions to this rule,

depending on your particular industry.

The challenge is to eliminate or minimize,

as much waste or non-value adding steps,

so that the % of value addition goes up


this is productivity improvement,

as the efforts which were wasted earlier will be used for adding value.

A Value Stream is defined as the set of all actions (both value added and non value added) required in bringing a specific product or service from raw material to the customer.


Chuck Intrieri
Senior Principal Lean Consultant

A Lean cross-functional team creates the best VSM.

 There are 7 steps in Value Stream Management:


  1. Create VSM @ gemba, or at the production/work cell itself
  2. Choose a Value Stream you wish to improve
  3. Map the current VSM state
  4. Eliminate all roadblocks, and non value added activities
  5. Map the future VSM state
  6. Create a plan to improve the VSM
  7. Implement the plan

A value stream could be:

Simply a product


one SKU


a family of products which go through

the same sequence of operations and the same resources.

Here my conclusions ...

  • VSM is a Great Tool

    It is simple. It costs almost anything. And will give you results.

  • Communication is improved a lot

    With a Value Stream Map you can destroy the barriers among departments.

  • It is customer oriented

    When everybody is oriented towards the flow, the customer and the company win.

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