Ten Years of Last Planner in Finland - Where Are We?

Anssi Koskenvesa1 & Lauri Koskela2

1Researcher, Faculty of the Built Environment, Tampere University of Technology; PL 600, 33101 Tampere, Finland. Phone +358 40 581 4263; anssi.koskenvesa@mittaviiva.fi
2Professor, School of the Built Environment, University of Salford; UK. Phone +44 161 2957960; l.j.koskela@salford.ac.uk

Abstract

The objective of this paper is to evaluate and summarize the diffusion of Last Planner in Finland in the past ten years. As Last Planner is a method to manage in a “lean manner”, its implementation in to use has required and requires a somewhat painful change to the fashion of “command and control” management. The efficient and successful use of Last Planner requires understanding of the lean concept. The implementation is examined through analyzing pilot projects, education offerings and company policies from 2003 to 2011. The different mechanisms of spreading the idea and implementing the method are illustrated by mini cases. The research questions are: How has this “dance of change” of implementing Last Planner proceeded in Finland? What can be learnt? Where are we now? Are we at the tipping point? Companies have explored the use of LPS mostly in pilot projects. Some have adopted parts of it, some everything and quite a few nothing. The use of LPS spreads in companies both vertically and horizontally. The basic idea from training and education creates new innovations of use at sites. People who have realized the gains take the method from an organization to another as they change company. The findings from this evaluation of history show that Last Planner as a method can be adopted, but unless there is a understanding about the potential of Lean Construction as a production management model, the use of it seems to be a constant struggle. Our conclusions will contribute to the understanding of through which mechanisms spreading an innovation occur and how the practical implementation is realized in a lean construction context.

Keywords

Last Planner System, site management, lean construction, production planning, implementation.

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Reference

Koskenvesa, A. & Koskela, L. 2012, 'Ten Years of Last Planner in Finland - Where Are We?' In:, Tommelein, I.D. & Pasquire, C.L., 20th Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction. San Diego, USA, 18-20 Jul 2012.

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