An Analysis of Integrating of Lean and Safety


In today's competitive world, organizations are turning to lean techniques to improve productivity. However, misapplication of lean techniques may lead to overlooking safety issues which may cause health problems and safety accidents. The amount of money companies spend on compensation claims is fundamentally a waste - which is against the basic principle of lean to reduce waste. Companies trying to implement lean should try to augment their lean initiatives with a motive to address safety and health concerns. The lean philosophies have been around for some time and their potential to turn around the performance of organizations is well known. However, the adverse effect on the health and safety issues due to the misapplication of lean techniques has not yet been explored adequately. The awareness levels of the relationship between safety and lean among the lean practitioners are not quite clear. The purpose of this research is to investigate whether companies are integrating safety or ergonomics with lean and, if so, at what levels. A survey was conducted to gauge the effects of training lean facilitators in ergonomics principles. The results of the survey are presented to show the impact of lean on safety.

Meeting Name

30th Annual National Conference of the American Society for Engineering Management 2009: ASEM 2009 (2009: Oct. 14-17; Springfield, MO)


Engineering Management and Systems Engineering

Second Department

Psychological Science

Keywords and Phrases

Adverse effect; Basic principles; Ergonomics principles; Health and safety issues; Lean techniques; Safety accidents; Safety and healths; Safety issues; Ergonomics; Industry; Philosophical aspects; Surveys; Safety engineering

International Standard Book Number (ISBN)


Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


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© 2009 American Society for Engineering Management, All rights reserved.

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