What are 3 Evils of manufacturing?

What are 3 Evils of manufacturing?

  • To adopt the external changes ( customer demand) quickly
  • To optimized available resources (minimum waste)

Customer demand

“High-quality product/service at an affordable price within a stipulated time.”
In simple words,
 Customer demand has three key elements:-
  •  High quality
  •  Affordable Price
  •  Stipulated time
A manufacturer required the following to meet customer demands:-
  • Automation (to provide high-quality product)
  • Optimization (to control the price of the product)
  • Flexibility ( ability to meet the changes)
To make use of available resources effectively manufacturers must aware of the wastes and other irregularities within the system.
This article mainly deals with all those wastes and irregularities.

Historical Background

After world war ll, Japan emerged with a lot of developments in the manufacturing sector.
A 3M model, which is a part of Toyota Production System (TPS), was developed by Taiichi Ohno (then Chief Engineer at Toyota).
These 3M stands for Muda, Mura, Muri, and collectively called ”  3 Evils of Manufacturing”.
 Now, we shall discuss them individually. Ok
To Know more about TPS Click here


Muda, waste
Muda is a Japanese word that means Waste.
There are at least 8 types of waste identified in a manufacturing system. Out of these, Seven waste was identified by Taiichi Ohno (CE at Toyota). The last waste was added during the 1900s after the introduction of the 3M model in western countries.
These waste are as follow:-
Transportation:- It means the movement of the product from source (manufacturing unit) to destination (market).
 A lot of transportation techniques/methods are available to reduce the transportation cost.
Note:- Product cost is the summation of all the costs
Overproduction:- It means to produce a product in a quantity higher than its demand. Overproduction leads to increase inventory cost which further contributes to the product cost.
 The use of proper forecasting techniques has the potential to reduces/eliminate this waste.
Over-processing:- over-processing means make use of additional/coster processes without their requirements.
Accurate process planning can reduce this kind of waste.
Inventory:- It includes every kind of raw material, semi-finished products, and final /finished products within the company.
A proper inventory control method can help to maintain inventory at its lowest level.
Motion:- It includes the all unproductive moves of men-machine-material.
A proper work-study is required to eliminate these moves.
Defects:- If a product does not meet the customer’s satisfaction, it is said to have defects and termed as Defective products.
Six sigma is an effective technique to deal with the defects.
Proper implementation of Six Sigma methodology increases the probability of defects free product up to 99.9997%, which means only 3.4 defective products per million products.
Waiting:- It is the time a worker or job has to wait before processing on a machine because of the prior engagement of that machine.
A suitable job sequencing method can reduce this waiting time.
Unused talent:- denotes the failure of a company to make use of their worker’s skill properly.
 A proper understanding between management and workers may resolve this problem.
Note:- Lean manufacturing works on the principle to reduces these waste particularly.


Mura is the second Japanese word in the 3M model. Mura means Unevenness.  Unevenness in the manufacturing system means irregularities/non-uniformity in the distribution of work among Men-machines (like few workers and machines are not being utilized proper).
This unevenness further contributes to the improper utilization of the resources.


Muri, overburden
Muri, the last term in the 3M model, is also a Japanese word that means Overburden.
The overburden in the manufacturing system means to use the man-machine beyond their fatigue limit. It further intensified the dissatisfaction of employees/workers and the tendency of machines to breakdown.

An analogy to understand 3M

Suppose a manufacturer has six tons of material to transport.
He has four options.
  •  2 tons/ truck in 3 trips or a single trip if 3 trucks are used.
  •  2 tons in one truck and 4 tons in the second truck in a single trip or on two trips if only one truck is used.
  •  All 6 tons in one truck in a single trip.
  •  3 tons/ truck in 2 trips on in a single trip if 2 trucks are used.
The first three options resemble  Muda, Mura, Muri respectively.
Whereas in the fourth case there is No Muda, No Mura & No Muri.

How to eliminate Mura & Muri???

To eliminate or reduce Mura & Muri, a proper work distribution is required among workers and machines after a proper study on their fatigue limits.

Advantages after eliminating 3M

After reducing 3M in adequate quantities a company enjoys various advantages over others.
  • Product cost gets lower down due to the proper utilization of resources.
  • Ability to meet the changes also improved
  • Workers satisfaction goes up
  • The company moves smoothly to meet the organizational goals.

Future scope

For the survival of any manufacturing company in the future, it will become almost mandatory to eliminate or to reduce all the three evils of manufacturing.
A company failed to do so would have to face serious consequences or even it will get completely failed.

This is all about the Evils of Manufacturing.

Hope you find it useful.

Happy learning

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