Go here to see a video explanation and a free Eliminate Combine Rearrange Simplify Template Download.
One uncommon approach in Lean is the framework of ECRS – Eliminate, Combine, Rearrange, and Simplify. This article explains how to apply the framework followed by a downloadable Work Analysis Template.
Fundamental to understanding any process and eventually generating practical ideas for improvement is to ask the 5W’s and 1H. So, here’s the definition of the 5W and 1H.
What are the 5W?
Put simply, the 5W’s are:
- Who is responsible for this process?
- What is the purpose of this process?
- Why do you do that?
- When does x happen?
What is the 1H?
Of course, it is:
Such as “How is that done?”
These questions, while seemingly simple, are critical to better understanding the process and also the potential opportunities for improvement.
What is ECRS?
In generating practical ideas for improvement, a common and practical framework I’ve used in the past is called ECRS, which stands for the following:
In this step, it’s important to identify the steps that can be quickly eliminated. Where possible, eliminate the details of work.
When work cannot be eliminated, then seek to combine them. In this step, the Combine phase addresses the Who, Where, and When.
Work can also be rearranged.
And, a good rule of thumb regardless of the situation is to simplify anyway. Of course, we want to Eliminate first but, if not, then Combine, Rearrange, and Simplify will be helpful.
The template below shows the following:
- Work Element
- Safety, Distance, Dimension, Quality, Ease
- Why, What, Where, When, Who, How
- Improvement Ideas
- Eliminate, Combine, Rearrange, and Simplify
So, today see how you might be able to apply this simple approach to better understanding your process and in how to improve your processes. Go here to see a video explanation and a free Eliminate Combine Rearrange Simplify Template Download.