In today’s fast-moving and globally competitive environment, many companies are pursuing practices that result in leaner operations. Lean practices emphasize the elimination of waste throughout the organization while saving money. At the same time, implementing the use of lean tools helps to establish a culture of continuous improvement.
One lean tool is visual management and 5S. Employing this tool can be a first step towards eliminating waste from organizational processes. The 5S process is a methodical approach to organizing a work space into an efficient area capable of sustainable, quality output. It is an ongoing process of improvement conducted by the people who work within an area, leading to ownership of all the improvements and changes.
The 5S process basically consists of the following steps:
- Sort (removal)
- Set in Order (organize/label)
- Shine & Inspect
- Standardize (How we do things)
- Sustain (Habit / Culture)
Benefits to the organization include:
- Improve response time to Customers.
- Elimination of waste means better Safety, Quality, Productivity and Costs.
- Reliable and consistent lead times.
- Potential for improved capacity due to equipment availability.
- Improved Consumer trust and confidence.
In the video below, our senior quality consultant, Charles Liedtke, discusses implementing 5S: