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The Complete Lean Shop
Glossary - W

Waste: (a.k.a. "MUDA" in Japanese) - (1) Any activity which utilizes equipment, materials, parts, space, employee time or other corporate resource beyond the minimum amount required for value-added operations to insure manufacturability. (2) Any activity that consumes resources and produces no added value to the product or service a customer receives. (3) Anything that consumes the organization's resources without adding value to the final product or service. Uneconomic use of resources.

Weighed Voting -
A way to prioritize a list of issues, ideas or attributes by assigning points to each item based on its relative importance.

Whack-A-Mole -
 A novel term that describes the process of solving a problem only to have another problem surface.

Wilcoxon Mann-Whitney Test -
Used to test the null hypothesis that two populations have identical distribution functions against the alternative hypothesis that the two distribution functions differ only with respect to location (median), if at all. It does not require the assumption that the differences between the two samples are normally distributed. In many applications, it is used in place of the two sample t-test when the normality assumption is questionable. This test can also be applied when the observations in a sample of data are ranks, that is, ordinal data rather than direct measurements.

Willing Worker
- An employee who would like to do a good job, but is prevented from doing so because of the presence of barriers that only management can remedy (a Deming term).

Work Cells: (a.k.a. U-Shaped Cells, Work Cells) -
Generally a horseshoe or U-Shaped work area layout that enables workers to easily move from one process to another in close proximity and pass parts between workers with little effort. "Cells" typically focus on the production of specific models in "part families" but can be adjusted to many different products as needed.

Work Environment
- Set of conditions under which work is performed - acc to ISO 9000:2005 3.3.4

Work in Process -
Items between machines or equipment waiting to be processed.

Work Team -
See “natural team.”

Workflow Diagram -
Used to show the physical flow of the work, people, or paperwork in a process. To help identify process steps that can be eliminated or improved. To show improvements in layout (“before” & “after” workflows). To help identify process bottlenecks.

Working Prototype -
 A functioning mock-up or model of a product.

Working Sequence -
One of three elements of standard work; refers to the sequence of operations in a single process that leads a floor worker to most efficiently produce quality goods.

World Class Quality (WCM) -
A term used to indicate a standard of excellence: best of the best.