Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to report on a research project at a safari park in Buckinghamshire, UK. The aim is to introduce lean principles to the park, to enable the park to increase profits through eliminating waste and improving the efficiency of key processes whilst concurrently increasing customer satisfaction. The research is based on a case study approach within the organisation over a period of three months. The project team worked together with management and staff to deliver tangible benefits to the park. Design/methodology/approach – The research is based on a case study approach within the organisation over a period of three months. The project team worked together with management and staff to deliver tangible benefits to the park. The team adopted a three stage approach linked by two decision points and used a variety of lean tools to help map the current state of practices in the park and to identify areas for improvement in the park's processes. Findings – The project succeeded in identifying several key areas for improvement. The current situation across a range of customer facing processes is mapped and through detailed analysis and simulations, recommendations for improvements have been delivered to the management. The scope of the project is broad and so for the purpose of this paper, only one key area will be elaborated on, feed logistics. Feed logistics is the distribution network of feed throughout the park from receipt from the suppliers, the storage locations, through to the preparation areas and ultimately the animals. Originality/value – The project demonstrated that in fact the underlying philosophies and tools of lean thinking can be used with significant benefits to drive improvements in the unusual setting of a safari park. The successful application of lean thinking into a safari park proved to be an extremely unique opportunity to observe the impact of those principles in generating both tangible and intangible benefits to that organisation. In particular, as discussed in this paper, the simplification of the feed network and distribution for the park eliminated waste in the form of movement, time and inventory.
- Animal feed
- Business process re-engineering
- Process efficiency
- Waste minimization
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Business and International Management
- Business, Management and Accounting (miscellaneous)