Zoos provide education and entertainment and often the preservation of rare animals. Lean and Six Sigma are used in zoos to improve operations and reduce wastes. We’ll look at several applications and finish with a video of some of the world’s amazing zoos.


Greenbelt Project to Reduce the Number of Days to Procure Zoo Materials: USA-Florida


In a Greenbelt Project Presentation titled “Lean Six Sigma DMAIC Improvement Project Story,” Erick Kaminsky and others present the results of their project to reduce the number of days to procure zoo materials.

The comprehensive presentation includes:

  • Project Charter
  • Project Timeline Plan
  • Project Alignment to Strategy
  • Process Flow Chart
  • Stakeholder Needs
  • Cost of Poor Quality
  • Data Collection Needs
  • Target Setting Methodology
  • Performance Indicator Gap
  • Problem Stratification
  • Potential Root Causes
  • Fishbone Diagram
  • Root Cause Verification
  • Countermeasures
  • Barriers and Aids
  • Action Plan
  • Review Results and Standardize Countermeasures
  • Lessons Learned

You can access their project report here.


Lean Thinking and the San Diego Zoo: USA-California


In a short case study titled “The lean turnaround of the San Diego Zoo Global,” Jeff Foster discusses the use of Lean thinking at the San Diego Zoo.

The case study includes:

  • Innovative Ways Found to Treat Giant Panda and Elephant
  • The Lean Journey

You can read the case study here.


North Carolina Zoo Kaizen Event to Increase Time Zookeepers Spend with Animals and Public: USA-North Carolina


An article titled “North Carolina Kaizen Zoo Event” outlines the approach using Lean to increase the amount of time zookeepers spend interacting with animals and educating the public.

The article includes:

  • Problem Statement
  • Objectives
  • Process
  • Solutions Developed

You can access the article here.


Lean Applied at a Safari Park: UK


In an article titled “Lean Thinking Implementation at a Safari Park” authors Denyse M. Julien and Benny Tjahjono discuss the implementation of Lean principles at a safari park in Buckinghamshire, UK.

The project team “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.”

As stated by the authors the project’s goals were to:

  • Understand the relationship between customer expectations and value-adding activities to direct focus appropriately.
  • Establish reference data that captures current processes and their associated resource requirement.
  • Identify and prioritize key processes.
  • Analyze key processes to determine the flow of value, information, and resource.
  • Propose and validate possible improvements to key processes that would

Generate maximum benefits whilst having the shortest payback period.

  • Ensure improvement sustainability through obtaining employee buy-in and knowledge management.

As stated in the article, the agreed upon project deliverables were

  • Process maps including As-Is and To-Be states.
  • Simulation models.
  • Resource planning tool.
  • Training documentation.
  • Improvement proposal

After a thorough discussion of the Lean implementation, the authors conclude that “the key learning from this research project is that when focusing on customer value and elimination of waste across functional boundaries it is possible to produce large savings and increase profit without affecting customer experience negatively.”

Copy and paste the following link into your browser to access Denyse and Benny’s article.


Amazing Zoos in the World


See some of the world’s amazing zoos in a video from Trend Max.

You can watch the video here.


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