5S in practice – how to create order in the workplace?

It is widely known that proper management can bring many benefits – in particular, increasing efficiency and reducing costs.

There are many methodologies to improve the efficiency of companies – including the 5S principle used in Lean Management.

The name comes from the letters “S”, which are the beginning of Japanese words for its five elements. These 5 principles follow each other cyclically.

Seiri – Sorting

It consists in separating from the workplace everything that is unnecessary for its performance. In this way, you can get rid of tools, materials and data that are not used during work and only interfere with the process of its implementation.

The advantages of this process include the elimination of:

– clutter of the workplace,
– waste of time related to the search for tools and documents
– communication barriers

So in one sentence it creates a clean and tidy workplace.

Seiton – Systematics

Systematics consists in the organization of all elements of the workplace. Its purpose is to arrange and mark them in such a way that they are easily accessible. The adopted system should also enable each employee to find and identify essential elements. Thanks to this, the construction of workstations is transparent. Systematics in the 5S concept use various types of visual markings (colors, symbols) and clearly defined storage areas for specific items. Thanks to this, the system becomes more efficient and functional, and the search for the necessary materials, tools or information never takes too much time.

Seiso – Cleaning

Cleaning is all about keeping the workplace clean. Like the other stages, 5S aims to increase productivity and reduce time wastage.

Seiketsu – standardization

It consists in determining the conditions that enable the stabilization of the implemented organizational behaviors, order and cleanliness. It usually comes down to drawing up various rules and instructions for carrying out activities.
It is important that all rules and instructions are clear and specific to employees.

Shitsuke – Self Discipline

The last stage of the 5S method comes down to self-discipline, i.e. developing and following habits related to the adopted solutions. It is often a long and quite difficult process, as it involves the introduction of permanent changes in the way of conduct and thinking.

However, it requires constant control by the management, training of employees, setting a good example, etc.

The 5S method improves the organizational culture and makes work more enjoyable and easier.

Employees are more focused on tasks and do not have to be distracted by cleaning or preparing the workplace.

Importantly, the 5S concept is universal and can be used in companies operating in various industries, dealing with both the production of goods and the provision of services.
So take a look around and bring 5S into your life

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