just-in-time system

views updated

just-in-time system (JIT) This is a system of related production practices which aim to deliver the exact quantity and quality of raw materials, parts, and sub-assemblies ‘just-in-time’ for the next stage of production. Originally associated with Japanese firms, but now more widely diffused, it implies: flexible production methods; short production runs and rapid changes in product lines; inventory management determined by downstream suppliers rather than forward management planning; and networks of small firms linked by subcontracting.