The process capacity sheet, also known as a table of production capacity by process or production capacity chart or process capacity table, is one of the three basic tools for establishing a standard operation. The other tools are the standard work combination sheet and standard work sheet. All three standard operations sheets are populated with data obtained through direct observation (as is the time observation form).

From my experience, there are a handful of pull system design steps. This post seeks to "simply" outline those steps and some of the math that should be considered.

However, don't let the brevity of this post mislead you. It isn't necessarily simple.

We will address more and more of the referenced math through future Lean Math posts.

The time observation form, also known as a process study form, is a basic and often-used tool for lean practitioners. Note that here we are talking about the application of the continuous time observation method and not the work sampling method.

The form, in combination with a stop watch, serves multiple purposes, including:

Lean practitioners must properly identify product families in order to value stream map a given family’s flow of material and information. That’s very important, but not always simple.

In order to illustrate how to identify product families and thus value streams, consider the following example. Three different patient groups go to a hospital. The treatment for patient groups 1 and 2 consists of three steps A, B, and C. However, the treatment for patient group 3 consists of only step D.

Work Content

Work content (Wc) represents total operator cycle time or, if multiple operators, the sum of operator cycle times to perform a specific process(es) or sub-process(es). The scope of human work, including both value-added and non value–added activities, may encompass a complete value stream or only a portion of it. For example, the lean practitioner may speak of the work content to check-in and room a patient, assemble a sensor module or process a claim.


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