A spaghetti diagram is a tool used to track the amount of movement or distance traveled by a worker or materials. You can then use a spaghetti diagram to analyze what you tracked and improve the flow. As a tool that is used in the analysis of process flows, a spaghetti diagram reveals redundancy in processes and helps users to identify various forms of waste. The name comes from the reference of laying spaghetti noodles out to show the flow of materials or workers.
Measurements with a spaghetti diagram can be very simple or more detailed if need be. People can be observed, carrying out their daily tasks and completing activities within a process. The path that they travel is mapped out on a floor plan. Keep in mind that your floor plan does not have to be an identical match to the real floor plan. If you are not able to use measuring wheels, CAD or other more precise measurements, a simple sketch of the area, showing approximate distances will get you started. Once this is done, each movement is recorded in a spaghetti noodle like manner with seperate lines for each movement. As noted earlier, for more accurate measurements you can ask staff to wear pedometers or tools like a measuring wheel can be used. You should record the distance traveled, steps taken and the amount of time for each movement. All of these can be used as measurements to improve on. For example, lowering steps, less time or less distance.
Once your current state diagrams are drawn and steps counted, distance traveled recorded or time taken documented, you can then conduct a comprehensive analysis. Begin with a few different questions.
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