Internal Supplier / Customer concept in a Manufacturing industry


dr madhavan

Can I have some references where I get details about the Internal supplier - Customer concept in a Manufacturing industry. I tried to browse the Net; I got information related to Education.


It was explained to me that you treat each succeeding operation as another customer.
1. Purchase material-Inspect and accept
2. Send it to your internal customer, say Shearing Dept. Sheared and inspected and accepted.
3. Shearing sends it to their internal customer, say the Machining Dept. It’s drilled and reamed and inspected and accepted. Machine Dept. sends it to their internal customer, say the Assembly Department.
4. Assembly Department installs hardware, inspects and accepts and sends it to their internal customer, say the Packaging Department.

All personnel in the work place depend on other personnel for their inputs. They are like customers waiting for acceptable goods, so that they can satisfy their own Internal Customers. You simply map out your inputs and outputs plant wide. You have each employee tell you what they need to do good work.
At least that’s how I understand the concept. It is supposed to make you think about satisfying the person who follows you in the process.

The instructor asked everybody to visualize the business from 50,000 ft in the air. Suppliers in one place, your business in another and the Customer in another. Now, visualize your business from 100 ft. in the air. As you look down you see how all departments interface and rely on one another to get a quality product out the door.

It is a simplistic explanation, and even I got it!

Fire Girl


Just to clarify for me.... I didn't read your 'slides' post but I'm sure that it was most accurate- as are most of your answers!

However, I seem to remember some of that concept in one of Juran's books. Is it not the idea of a Japanese business philosopher? I think it's a fantastic way to get people to work together and realize that doing a shabby job for people you work with is just as bad as doing a shabby job for your 'real' customers!

Energy I like your explanation regarding the whole 'viewing your business from 100ft in the air'. Very clever.

[This message has been edited by Fire Girl (edited 09 May 2001).]


Fully vaccinated are you?
I don't know the origin. I can say that as long as I can remember the idea that a customer can be anything or anyone has been around. Whoever or whatever you output to is a 'customer'.
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