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Lean PD Best Practices: Airbus Defence & Space

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Airbus Defence and Space is one of three companies within the airbus group. This case study aims to analyze the best lean management practices applied to product development within Military aircraft, one of airbus Defence and Space’s four business lines.

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Airbus Defence and Space is one of three companies within the airbus group. This case study aims to analyze the best lean management practices applied to product development within Military aircraft, one of airbus Defence and Space’s four business lines.

In 2011, the company began to implement lean Management with the support and involvement of senior management. To date, the company has focused on the implementation and use of the Hoshin Kanri, value Stream Mapping and visual Management tools so as to improve the engineering capability throughout the organization.
a lean approach unites all the functions that make up the airbus Defence and Space structure and is based on three pillars, including leadership, environment, and processes. in addition, from the beginning, the guidelines (road map), priorities and tools in use are defined in line with the lean strategy, especially the value Stream Mapping, Practical Problem Solving and go look and See tools.
Lean practices are implemented wide along airbus Defence & Space. in the Engineering branch of Military aircraft business line, visual Management is deployed in the whole structure, the teams are able to respond to and solve problems through the Practical Problem Solving tool, the Top Management establishes yearly objectives through Hoshin Kanri and more than 10 breakthrough improvement Projects are launched every year. in 2014, the implementation of lean management in Military aircraft Engineering achieved savings of more than €3 million.

The main challenges of the company are as follows:

  • Taking advantage of the Senior Management commitment with lean to engage the teams at every level and to empower cultural change
  • Achieving the Excellence in the team’s performance by the daily application of complementary Quality & lean methods and principles
  • Extending the lean management to airbus Defence & Space network, including all the stakeholder, suppliers, and subcontractors

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