Essential in Lean Manufacturing is The 5-S Philosophy
This is the finest
piece of easy information about this subject that I have ever seen. Japanese
Guru Iwao Kobayashi originally compiled these simple steps to create the
best working environment. As companies make an effort to implement Lean
Manufacturing (or the Toyota Production System TPS), they realize that the 5
S provide a higher quality of life and self-esteem for everyone in the
organization, therefore there is a boost in the productivity and the quality
of plant, processes, and products. The 5"S"s
are explained here as a very simplified but thorough and feasible process. I am sure that
you will find it excellent! Thank you Todd.
Anyone who has recently opened a
new machine shop has certainly had these thoughts: How can I improve efficiency, work
organization, quality, safety and housekeeping and protect my investment at the same time?
Todd Skaggs, President of Metaltek Mfg. Inc., decided that the 5S process could
effectively impact the way his company did business.
Based on five Japanese words that
begin with S, the 5S Philosophy focuses on effective work place organization
and standardized work procedures. 5S simplifies your work environment, reduces waste and
non-value activity while improving quality efficiency and safety.
Sort (Seiri), The first S focuses on eliminating unnecessary items
from the workplace. An effective visual method to identify these unneeded items is called
red tagging. A red tag is placed on all items not required to complete your job. These
items are then moved to a central holding area. This process is for evaluation of the red
tag items. Occasionally used items are moved to a more organized storage location outside
of the work area while unneeded items are discarded. Sorting is an excellent way to free
up valuable floor space and eliminate such things as broken tools, obsolete jigs and
fixtures, scrap and excess raw material. The Sort process also helps prevent the JIC job
mentality (Just In Case.)
Set In Order (Seiton) is the second S and focuses on efficient and
effective storage methods.
You must ask yourself these
What do I need to do my job?
Where should I locate this item?
How many of this item do I need?
Strategies for effective Set In
Order are painting floors, outlining work areas and locations, shadow boards, and modular
shelving and cabinets for needed items such as trash cans, brooms, mop and buckets.
Imagine how much time is wasted every day looking for a broom? The broom should have a
specific location where all employees can find it. "A place for everything and
everything in its place."
Shine: (Seiso) Once you have eliminated the clutter and junk that
has been clogging your work areas and identified and located the necessary items, the next
step is to thoroughly clean the work area. Daily follow-up cleaning is necessary in order
to sustain this improvement. Workers take pride in a clean and clutter-free work area and
the Shine step will help create ownership in the equipment and facility. Workers will also
begin to notice changes in equipment and facility location such as air, oil and coolant
leaks, repeat contamination and vibration, broken, fatigue, breakage, and misalignment.
These changes, if left unattended, could lead to equipment failure and loss of production.
Both add up to impact your companys bottom line.
Standardize: (Seiketsu) Now that the first three 5Ss have been implemented,
you should concentrate on standardizing best practice in your work area. Allow your
employees to participate in the development of such standards. They are a valuable but
often overlooked source of information regarding their work. Think of what McDonalds,
Pizza Hut, UPS, Blockbuster and the United States Military would be without effective work
Sustain: (Shitsuke) This is by far the most difficult S to implement and
achieve. Human nature is to resist change and more than a few organizations have found
themselves with a dirty cluttered shop a few months following their attempt to implement
5S. The tendency is to return to the status quo and the comfort zone of the "old
way" of doing things. Sustain focuses on defining a new status quo and standard of
work place organization.Please give us your evaluation below...
Once fully implemented, the 5S
process can increase morale, create positive impressions on customers, and increase
efficiency and organization. Not only will employees feel better about where they work,
the effect on continuous improvement can lead to less waste, better quality and faster
lead times. Any of which will make your organization more profitable and competitive in
the market place.We can help you get started and have a successful 5-S Implementation.