What Is Mistake Proofing (Poka-Yoke)

Mistake proofing business slide

Mistake proofing (also called poka-yoke) is defined as an improvement technology that uses a device or procedure,  to prevent (or eliminate) defects or equipment malfunction during normal processing 

Mistake-proofing devices enforce correct operations by eliminating choices that could lead to incorrect actions. These steps also could stop a process from creating errors or defects. These tools can prevent machine and product damage.

Mistake-proofing activities can be integrated with the lean tools of Quick-Changeover5S-visual-managementOne-Piece-Flow, and Standard-Work. The possibilities for mistake-proofing are endless and typically involve very little investment in resources.

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Implementing Mistake proofing

By applying mistake-proofing (poka-yoke) you:

  • Promote individual responsibility for quality ownership.
  • Conduct 100% inspection without the effort.
  • Detect and eliminate defects as early in the process as possible.
  • Provide immediate feedback, thus reducing the time for corrective action.
  • Establish a system of successive checks for each operation.
  • Provide self-check activities, which gives quicker feedback than successive checks.
  • Ensure proper conditions exist prior to actual production, and prevents mistakes from occurring in the first place.
  • Focus on elimination of causes for errors rather than just identification.
  • Enhance customer satisfaction through the elimination of defects.
  • Focus on waste reduction in defects and processing.*Improve first-pass yield.
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