Takt Time is the heartbeat of a lean organization. It is the pace of production that aligns production to customer demand. The term is derived from the German work Taktzeit, which loosely translated means "rhythmic time" or "keeping a beat". Takt Time is calculated as Planned Production Time / Customer Demand. Takt Time Video Below.
Takt Timers, takt is a word that was derived from the German word Taktzeit which translates in to cycle time. It sets the pace for industrial manufacturing lines. As an example, in automobile manufacturing, cars are put together on an assembly line, and are moved on to the next station after a certain time. The takt time is the time needed to complete the work on each station. It has to be less than the takt time in order for the product to be completed within the allotted time.
Takt time is calculated on virtually every task in a business environment. It is used in manufacturing (casting of parts, drilling holes or preparing a workplace for another task), control tasks (testing of parts or adjusting machinery) or in administration (answering standard inquiries or call center operation). It is, however, most common in production lines that move a product along a line of stations that each perform a set of predefined tasks.
Once a takt system is implemented there are a number of benefits: The product moves along a line, so bottlenecks (stations that need more time than planned) are easily identified when the product does not move on in time. Correspondingly, stations that don't operate reliably (suffer frequent breakdown, etc.) are easily identified. The takt leaves only a certain amount of time to perform the actual value added work. Therefore there is a strong motivation to get rid of all non value-adding tasks (like machine set-up, gathering of tools, transporting products, etc.) Workers and machines perform sets of similar tasks, so they don't have to adapt to new processes every day, increasing their productivity (albeit at the expense of increased boredom, burnout, and risk of repetitive stress/motion injury; see below). There is no place in the takt system for removal of a product from the assembly line at any point before completion, so opportunities for shrink and damage in transit are minimized.
The Takt time concept aims to match the pace of production with customer demand and the net available work time available.