5S is a methodology used for workplace organization. It’s also a methodology that Components Company Inc. embraces at their Brookfield, Wis., facility. Using the 5S methodology, Components Company is able to organize its work environment for greater efficiency and effectiveness.
The 5S Methodology
The five “S” words used in 5S are:
The methodology originated in Japan and became part of the country’s Just In Time (JIT) Manufacturing model.
That model began in the 1960s and 1970s with Toyota. It migrated west in the 1980s, but lost steam in the 1990s as more companies started employing Lean Manufacturing, which aimed at reducing waste during production.
However, the 5S methodology endured in the Lean Manufacturing strategy and many organizations like Components Company Inc. continue to implement 5S in their day-to-day operations.
Breaking Down 5S
Below is a breakdown of how each of the five “S” words are defined.
- Sort: Keep only what you need. Clutter can quickly lead to disorganization which can lead to inefficiency.
- Straighten: Organize and put everything in its place. The items you do keep need to be organized in such a way that they can be quickly found for use. Many companies, including Components Company, use shadowboxes for tools and other items. Shadowboxes display the shapes of tools so that employees know exactly where to return them when not in use.
- Shine: Clean and inspect to make sure everything is in working order. For efficiency as well as safety measures, it’s important to keep work areas clean and inspect all machinery before use.
- Standardize: Use schedules and checklists to make it easy. Who’s in charge of maintenance and when should it be done? Keeping schedules is a quick and easy way to ensure everyone is following the correct procedures and that maintenance is completed on a regular basis.
- Sustain: Train and maintain the standards. Make sure new employees are trained about 5S. When new procedures are put in place, inform all employees of the changes. Don’t relax on the rules. When they aren’t followed, problems will arise.
Components Company is proud to enforce the 5S Methodology in its facility to ensure better efficiency in our manufacturing process.