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Overview Of 5 S Lean Management


Introduction to 5 “S”

Japanese style of management has become popular the world over. Some of the Japanese management approaches and techniques have gained global acceptance and are now being practical in many countries.

In early 1980s good housekeeping become a pertinent issue in Japanese Industries, as companies realised its powerful contribution to productivity and quality improvement. The ‘5S’ principal pioneered by Toyota Motors focuses upon creating a primer quality of workplace where in quality can take firm roots. ‘5S’ is a systematic approach to good housekeeping leading to a cleaner, safer and better work place, which is fundamental to productivity and quality.

Japanese industry did not start off strong. In fact Japanese industry has very little comparative advantage has traditionally been understand. There is no over gushing out the ground. There are no vast mines reaping with iron ore. The coal veins are poor & uneconomical. The forests are scraggly. The country cannot even grow enough food to feed its people.

Then why Japanese Industry considered such a threat in so many lands, because there is one resource that Japan does have in abundance. People who know that nothing comes free & who are willing to study hard & work hard to earn their way. Japan’s functionally illiteracy rate is amongst the lowest in the world. It’s labour relations are among the most harmonious because workers know the importance of finding better ways of doing things to make their jobs easier, their output better and their lives more comfortable.

What is a 5”s” movement basically? It is a determination to organise work place, to keep it neat to maintain standardise conditions & to maintain discipline that is needed to do a good job.

Definition Of 5”S

“A Japanese invention to make work place smooth going, disciplined, clean & impressive”

Significance of the word 5“S”

5s Comprises 5 Japanese Words That Start From “S”

1. Seiri – sorting out unnecessary around you.
2. Seiton – set in a way that gives quick retrivability.
3. Seiso – Daily cleaning & inspection of work place to keep things ready to use.
4. Seiketsu – Serene atmosphere / sanitising / implementing visual concepts.
5. Shitsuke – Integration of the self-discipline in the work place.

Tangible results expected from 5S practices

From People

* Employees will be disciplined to be more aware of untidy workplace and motivated to improve the level of cleanliness and tidiness.
* Greater team spirit and co-operation can be built up through involvement of all within an organisation.
* Employees would be more conscious of improvement, which leads to greater efficiency and effectiveness.
* Employee’s moral will be improved.
* Enhancement of creativity will generate more ideas related to improvement due to visible results.

From Machines and Tools

* Machine trouble can be detected at an earlier stage to prevent a major breakdown when machines are cleaned daily by people operating the machine.
* Daily cleaning of measuring instrument will ensure accuracy and reliability.
* Life of machines and tools can be extended significantly when they are handled with care and placed in appropriate locations.
* Due to clean and better-organised workplace, shop floor and office operations become easier.
* Accident rates go down significantly due to operators’ awareness and early detection of problems.
* Floor space is better utilised as all objects are properly arranged.
* Improvement in productivity and efficiency is clearly seen.

From Materials and Work-in-progress

* Flow of materials and work-in-progress will smoother.
* Inventory of materials and work-in-progress will become clearly visible and easily handled.
* Material yield ratios can be improved.
* Reduced material handling will result.

From products and customers

* Clean workplace will ensure that final products will be free from dust.
* Sales persons can attract more customers by showing the plant as a marketing tool.
* Quality of product is improved.