The new Lean Certification is intended to set an international standard for aligning Lean practices. According to a statement from SME, this is the only true professional Lean Certification on the market that is based on a public body of knowledge and not tied to any training program. It has been developed by Lean practitioners across industries who have chosen a Lean career path. They have created a standard based on their knowledge and experience.
The program is being managed by SME, a non-profit organization whose core purpose is to advance manufacturing knowledge.
According to SME, the benefits of Lean Certification will impact all levels of industry. Large and mid-sized manufacturers will be able to use Lean Certification to support supplier development initiatives — and potentially help align entire industries to a common Lean standard, the organization says.
The new Lean Certification will provide manufacturing professionals with credentials illustrating their knowledge and application of Lean principles. There are three levels of Lean Certification and one Industry Knowledge Certificate. The Knowledge Certificate is an exam-only option that measures knowledge of the basic principles of Lean. The first level of certification is Bronze, recognizing tactical knowledge of Lean focused on localized deployment and application of Lean principles, concepts and methods.
The second certification is Silver, focusing on the integration of technical Lean activities with organizational restructuring necessary for transformation and the sustainable Lean operation of a complete value stream. The highest level of Lean Certification is Gold, which represents the complete Lean transformation of a business organization.