How The 5S Technique Helps Business Productivity
14th November 23
We’ve recently spoken about the principles of Lean methodology and how it can help identify what your customer values most. Today we’re digging deeper by looking at a basic, but powerful Lean technique; 5S.
What is 5S?
5S is a technique aimed at reducing disorder and enabling colleagues to work in an efficient environment. By following the 5S technique, you will create and – critically – maintain an organised workspace, allowing operations to run more smoothly and team members to work more efficiently.
- Sort – Review all the items within a specific workspace and only keep those that are completely necessary. Not only does this make a physical difference to the environment in question, it also enables you to remove waste
- Set in order – Arrange the remaining items in order to promote an efficient workspace. This creates a smoother-flowing operation as all items have a designated “home”, therefore making it easier to spot when something is missing
- Shine – Clean the work area so it is neat and tidy. By capitalising on the newly-tidied space, you are taking the opportunity to clean floors, equipment and furniture to prevent things from becoming unclean or unsafe
- Standardise – Set standards for a consistently organised workspace. By maintaining and improving the standards in the previous steps, these new processes will ensure there is no regression
- Sustain – Maintain and review these new standards. Don’t fall into the trap of letting this become a one-off job. Review things regularly and make sure this proper maintenance becomes a habit
Why is 5S important?
There are a number of reasons why the 5S technique is important and how it can help your business’ productivity. Such as:
- Organisation leads to efficiency – If everything has its place and everyone knows where that is, it is much simpler for items to be retrieved. This saves time and makes the working day run much smoother
- Removes waste – Places like warehouses and stockrooms are already busy enough as it is. 5S ensures you only have the things you need and disposes of anything that’s not necessary
- Colleague safety – If a workspace is in disarray, it could lead to injury. Making sure an area is tidy and organised allows colleagues to move around more freely
- More organisation during seasonal spikes – Taking these steps as soon as possible means the workspace will be more organised during busy periods when activity levels are higher
- Happy customers – As we’ve mentioned, Lean methodology focuses on what your customer values most. Taking steps to make your workspace more efficient means sales – and therefore customers – are less likely to be negatively impacted
Our team of expert business productivity consultants use a range of work study services to identify precisely where improvements can be made. Whether it’s changes to a layout or the process itself, we can provide a detailed roadmap that explains exactly how to achieve your goals, improving business productivity and streamlining processes.
Discover how we can help you create an organised and efficient workplace. Contact us today.