What is lead time

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Lead time is the time taken to satisfy a customer requirement.  Lead time is a very important KPI and is often targetted for reduction (for example it can cause delays in production, and create cost,  when lead times are excessive).  Lead time also forms part of the QCD model (Quality cost and delivery) – measuring lead time can be complicated and requires accurate data to be captured on delivery schedule.

A common example of lead time is that quoted by suppliers at time of purchase e.g. a box of widgets will take 3 weeks to be delivered from time of order.

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