Glossary of Lean Management and Supply Chain Management terms

For mutual understanding: short definitions of important terms from the world of continuous improvement and Supply Chain Management


Click on one of the letters beneath to check the glossary for terms beginning with that letter.


Ideal state

The ideal state in the lean world is represented by processes that are fully waste-free. Once there is no more obvious or hidden waste, the process is one that consists of 100 % value creation. When defining the ideal state for a value stream or a process, the team has to see beyond current limits. Often, the team will come up with ideas to further reduce waste in order to reach the next target state. The target state is the achievable state that comes closest to the ideal state.

Internal setup

Internal setup is the term used to encompass setup activities done when the machine is at a standstill.


Inventory is a type of > waste. Inventory includes all components, from raw materials to procured parts that are not immediately needed to meet customer orders.