Lean Manufacturing Implementation in Kenya

  • E K Mwangi
  • L Kamau


Many manufacturing companies are now using Lean Manufacturing (LM) as a corporate strategy to increase their global competitiveness. Lean tools such as Kaizen, 5S, Total Productive Maintenance, Kanban, Total Quality Management, Visual Stream Mapping and others are implemented as projects aimed at creating processes that give the company a competitive advantage over its competitors by reducing waste. The purpose of this study was to determine the status of lean manufacturing implementation in the Kenyan manufacturing sector. The study adopted a descriptive survey design. The target population consisted of 653 manufacturing companies that were current members of the Kenya Association of Manufacturers in 2013. Stratified sampling was applied to the sampling frame in order to achieve equitable representation ofrespondents from different categories of the manufacturing companies. A total of 84 respondents, one from each selected company, were selected to participate in the study. A questionnaire was sent to each respondent. A total of 37 questionnaires were returned representing a 44.0% response rate. An agglomerative hierarchical cluster analysis technique was used to uncover three lean manufacturing clusters that existed in the Kenyan manufacturing sector. Lean drivers and lean barriers were analyzed based on these lean clusters. The results showed that focus on customers is the main driving force that causes companies in the Kenyan manufacturing sector to implement lean manufacturing irrespective of their lean status. Increased flexibility and being part of the company’s continuous improvement programs had the least influence on lean implementation. Lean barriers that had the greatest influence of hindering lean manufacturing implementation were lack of understanding on Lean Manufacturing concepts followed closely by cost of implementation. It was concluded that a lot of education and training on lean manufacturing and implementation is required withinthe Kenyan manufacturing sector.
Oct 9, 2019
How to Cite
MWANGI, E K; KAMAU, L. Lean Manufacturing Implementation in Kenya. Proceedings of Sustainable Research and Innovation Conference, [S.l.], p. 225-235, oct. 2019. ISSN 2079-6226. Available at: <http://sri.jkuat.ac.ke/ojs/index.php/proceedings/article/view/794>. Date accessed: 06 apr. 2020.