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Deadly Wastes Canvas
2 hours
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With the Process Journey you have already defined all activities within the process that you want to make more efficient. Identify in which of the activities wastes occur and how they can be eliminated.

The Deadly Wastes Canvas helps you to identify the sources and causes of waste in your process. Waste takes time and increases costs. Waste occurs in different forms, from product defects to excessive inventory and over processing. Use the Deadly Wastes Canvas to identify waste in your processes and learn about solutions to improve efficiency.

Download the Deadly Wastes Canvas template to brainstorm about how to improve the efficiency of your process. Download the example of Pizzeria Toscana to get inspired and learn from the practical application of this tool.

How to use

Waste can be described as ‘something that adds no value’. With the Deadly Wastes Canvas, you identify the wastes in your process, the causes of these wastes and how to eliminate wastes. Identifying and removing waste helps you to focus on what is valuable to the customer. The Deadly Wastes Canvas is most effective if done by a group of people; since discussions will be more fruitful. By following the steps below, you will be able to complete the Deadly Wastes Canvas:


Step1: select the process that you want to make more efficient First select a process that you would like to make more efficient. A process is a set of connected activities to achieve a specific result. A process should have a clear start and ending. Examples of processes are hiring personnel, ordering a pizza or drilling a hole.


Step 2: describe the selected process Describe the selected process as a list of interrelated activities. Write each activity on a post-it and place all activities in the right order on a whiteboard or on a sheet of paper. Connect activities with arrows to indicate the process flow. For more explanation on mapping your process see the Process Journey tool.


Step 3: identify the wastes in your process From the theory of lean manufacturing we take nine forms of waste that can be represented by the acronym DOWNTIMES:

  • Defects: Mistakes that require additional time, resources, and money to fix.
  • Overproduction: Production that is more than needed or before it is needed.
  • Waiting: Wasted time whenever work in the process has to stop for some reason.
  • Non- or miscommunication: Misunderstanding and miscommunication caused by inaccurate or missing information.
  • Transportation: Unnecessary movements of products and materials.
  • Inventory: Excess products and materials not being processed.
  • Motion: Unnecessary movements by people (e.g. walking) or machines.
  • Excess processing: More work or higher quality than is required.
  • Skills: Not or under-utilizing peoples’ talents, skills and knowledge.

Look again at all activities in your process. For each activity, check if you can find one of the nines types of waste and write the activities down in the column ‘where in the process’ in the Deadly Wastes Canvas template.


Step 4: identify the causes of waste To be able to solve a problem, it is important to understand where it comes from. When you have found one or more wastes in the activities in your process, think about what causes these wastes and write this down in the column ‘causes’ in the template.


Step 5: select Efficiency Solutions Finally, look for ways to remove waste and improve your process by applying proven solutions. Use the Efficiency Solutions that come with the template to find ways to remove different kinds of waste in your process. Solutions are offered for each type of waste. Place the solution cards that you think are applicable on the Deadly Wastes Canvas template in the column Solutions. You can go through all the identified wastes and look for solutions to improve efficiency. "

Downloads and Examples may currently only be available in English.