When NOT to use 5S
Today I’m going to tell you when it’s best NOT to use 5S. Before we can talk about when not to use 5S, I want to make sure everybody understands what 5S really is. 5S is a common workplace organization term that simply stands for these five S words:
- Set in order
These are all very important.I even recommend people implementing 5S before I arrive to solve their problems, because many problems just disappear if you implement 5S. Click To Tweet
Video: When NOT to Use 5S
Evaluate the necessary items and remove all the unnecessary tools. Sort the good and bad parts and eliminate the obstacles.
Set in Order
Arrange all of your necessary items, tools, etc., in a way where they are easy to find when you need them. This is basically a fancy, less insulting way to say, “Go organize your stuff.” Last summer, my wife asked me to help organize the garage. I hated it, until I realized, we weren’t organizing the garage; we were 5S-ing it. It sounds a lot better, right?
Shine means clean your workspace. Make it SHINE! Inspect your workspace to ensure a clean and safe working environment.
The first three S’s have been pretty self-explanatory; however, I don’t think a lot of people understand how to standardize. Standardizing is very simple, but extremely important.
Simply stated, you want to make sure all your employees are trained to perform a task without any variation. Think of this as if your team members are like a group of programmed robots. Make sure all the best practices are in use.
Perform regular audits. Train and discipline. Have self-discipline. And finally, maintain this proper order.
You may also encounter people adding one additional S sometimes which stands for Safety.
The Perfect Time to Forget 5SIf there’s a tornado or elephants charging through your manufacturing plant, then you can throw 5S out the window, but just for a few minutes. Click To Tweet
Returning to my original question, when do we not use 5S? The answer is simple; basically never. There may be brief times when an immediate need takes precedence. When this occurs, simply handle that situation and return to utilizing 5S. In my professional opinion, the best time to not be using 5S is absolutely never.
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I’d love to hear from you. Please leave a comment below on how 5S has helped you. If you need one-on-one help, send me an email to get the ball rolling. I’d love to help you come up with a custom plan of action specific to your facility.