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Kanban pull systems are an essential Lean implementation tool. The Kanban pull system is a way of synchronizing the material and information flow of disconnected processes to enable Just in Time production.
A Pull System itself is a method for controlling the flow of resources through a system. The goal of such a system is to replace only what has been consumed at the optimal time. It is called a Pull System because resources are pulled into the pipeline only as they are needed or requested. This differs from a Push System, which attempts to use forecasts and schedules to drive the flow of production.
Kanbans, signals or visual controls, are used to trigger material and information movement or production execution through the Pull System. Kanban systems help organizations avoid errors and balance the “flow.” Whether it is the office or the production shop floor, effective signals increase communication, put the employee in control and require less management involvement.
The goal for Kanban Pull Systems is to support Continuous Flow – “make one, move one”.