As a product of the ‘Just in Time’ Manufacturing, 5S technique was developed as a measure to optimize manufacturing performance by the Japanese giant- Toyota. The objective of the methodology is to provide ownership of the processes to each and every employee. The 5 principles for the concept are; Sort, Set in Order, Shine, Standardize and Sustain.
Sort (Seiri): The function focuses on making the shop floor/work area free from the junk, removal of tools not in use and accumulation of unnecessary items.
Set in Order (Seiton): Set talks about the importance of arranging the shop floor/work area according to accessibility and usability of tools and materials. It eliminates loss and wastage of time by methods such as FIFO.
Shine (Seiso): Shine prioritizes cleaning the workplace and keeping it in neat and hygienic conditions at all times. This not only prevents hazards and accidents but also keeps employees motivated.
Standardize (Seiketsu): The function refers to standardizing all the practices undertaken in the workplace.
Sustain (Shitsuke): The practice can be maintained only if it is maintained as per the benchmark levels and regular audits are performed through training.
- Since processes are error-proofed, there are fewer defects arising in the system and operations, thereby enhancing the overall productivity of the organization.
- Operations can be undertaken safely and securely, reducing the likelihood of accidents.
- Machinery and equipment can be sustained, reducing the amount of breakdowns.