For years businesses had the philosophy they should carry large inventory of all products to make sure they wouldn’t run out of product or parts. Then organizations switched to Just in Time inventory (JIT). The idea was by receiving materials right when they are needed, there would be great savings in inventory, insurance, storage etc.
The problem is many organizations are trying to use JIT inventory for their materials and miscalculating their needs and shipping times. They anticipate running out of a vital material on Wednesday so they plan on having the more materials delivered on Tuesday. This becomes a problem when they don’t anticipate shipping delays (bad weather, mistakes, their supplier not having enough product etc). As a result, instead of just in time inventory, too often they have NO INVENTORY.
While large manufacturing plants might have the manpower and experience and computers to operate a true JIT system, smaller organizations are the ones that frequently are struggling with the concept.
As an example, there used to be a little sandwich and pizza place in town. There were days they didn’t have napkins. There were days they didn’t have lids for the drinks. Almost every day something on their menu wasn’t available because they had run out of an ingredient. They were trying to use JIT and failed miserably. It’s no longer a problem because they are NO LONGER IN BUSINESS.
An alternative to JIT is Just One More (JOM). This concept involves having one additional piece of everything so instead of ordering for exactly what you will be needing instead, you order to replace the one extra.
As a simple example, if this little sandwich shop was ordering napkins in quantities that would last one week and they were re-ordering each Monday, they would make sure they have enough for the entire week PLUS one more week. This allows them to make sure they always have enough in stock without having to carry large inventories.
JIT is a bit cheaper than JOM but unless you have truly mastered JIT, JOM might save you a LOT of money in lost opportunities.
Just something to consider
Have a great day!