Lean Construction is driven to minimize costs and maximize value on each project completed, challenging all stakeholders to develop and apply better ways to manage the overall construction process. Everyone related to the construction process has incentive to get the project done faster and at a lower cost — from the project owners who want to see tangible results for their investment to designers and contractors who want to do their job well and move on to the next project.

To develop the tools needed to build lean, the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) has developed the Lean Construction Education Program. Construction professionals at all experience levels will learn the building blocks necessary to transform their projects and companies into a lean operating system. Take a single unit, or complete them all and qualify for a professional credential in Lean Construction.

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Unit 1: Variation in Production Systems
An introductory course in the Lean Construction Education Program. This half-day, instructor-led course teaches the concept of variation. Following this course, you will be able to:

  • Define the different types of variation
  • Explain the concept of throughput
  • Distinguish the concepts of throughput and work in progress
  • Describe the role of variation in production operations
  • List sources of variation in construction settings
  • Explain variation mitigation techniques
  • Contrast variation mitigation techniques

Unit 2: Pull in Production
A half-day, instructor-led course that explains the concept of pull as a means to reliable production workflow. Following this course, you will be able to:

  • Compare batch-and-queue and continuous-flow production systems
  • Distinguish push systems from pull systems
  • Describe the impact of pull on production systems
  • Explain pull strategies in construction operations

Unit 3: Lean Workstructuring
The first of two units that introduces the Last Planner® System (LPS). This system was developed by the Lean Construction Institute (LCI) to plan projects in a way that produces predictable workflow and rapid learning. This half-day, instructor-led course describes the process of Lean Workstructuring. Following this course, you will be able to:

  • Apply the methods and tools utilized in pull planning
  • Describe the concept of Lean Workstructuring
  • Outline the desired outcomes of Lean Workstructuring
  • Describe the characteristics and application of the Last Planner® System

Unit 4: The Last Planner® System
The second of two units introducing the Last Planner® System (LPS). This half-day, facilitator-led course shows how to conduct make-ready and weekly work planning sessions. Following this course, you will be able to:

  • Apply the Last Planner System on a project;
  • Hold make-ready and weekly work planning sessions; and
  • Calculate, track and analyze percent plan complete for a project

Unit 5: Lean Supply Chain and Assembly
A one-day, instructor-led course that explains the concept of lean supply chain and assembly. Following this course, you will be able to:

  • Differentiate between traditional procurement practices and lean supply chain applications;
  • Identify waste and value-adding activities within the supply chain and assembly;
  • Evaluate the impact of using lean supply chain on waste elimination, continuous flow and site operations pull;
  • Identify strategies needed at the project and company levels to support the lean supply chain;
  • List examples of process improvements to the lean supply chain;
  • Expand lean beyond the individual project; and
  • Create a value stream map to diagnose and improve the supply chain.

Unit 6: Lean Design and Pre-construction
A half-day, instructor-led course that explains the concepts of value-based management, lean in the design process and relational contracting. Following this course, you will be able to:

  • Distinguish between the varying definitions for design.
  • Define value and commonly used methods to maximize it.
  • Discuss waste and commonly used methods to minimize it.
  • Differentiate between traditional project methods and lean design.
  • Explain the various lean tools used in design and how to deploy them.

Unit 7: Problem-Solving Principles and Tools
A seven hour, instructor-led course that describes the Lean Problem Solving Process and illustrates how to use tools to solve problems in a lean manner. Following this course, you will be able to:

  • Define the difference between traditional and lean problem solving.
  • Describe how to create a team environment to solve problems.
  • Explain how to create trust to avoid problems.
  • Describe Observation Walks.
  • Identify root causes of problems.