The current state value stream map provides a 30,000 foot snapshot of how an organization operates. One of the unique aspects of this tool compared to others is that it shows the flow of both materials and information.
This tool is extremely useful for a few reasons:
It provides eye-opening insight into the level of waste in an organization.
It provides a foundation upon which to build a plan to improve.
It acts as a communication tool to make sure that everyone in the organization is on the same sheet of music.
The current state value stream map is such an important tool in your continuous improvement kit that no improvement project should be taken on without seeing how it fits into the overall flow of work. Note that this should not preclude individuals from taking on daily improvement opportunities. It just means that resources should be allocated as part of an overall improvement strategy. The current state value stream map provides the foundation for that strategy.
When used in conjunction with a future state map, the current state map focuses effort. The leadership team should ask themselves whether or not a project is important enough to take on if they cannot clearly explain how it helps close the gap between the current state and future state value stream maps.