We have previously looked at the first 2 S’ of the 5S method, now we are going to delve further into the final 3 S’. If you missed the first article you can read it here.
After you have completed the steps ‘Sort’ and ‘Set in Order’ you then need to ‘Shine’. Shining consists of a thorough cleaning of the entire facility, this includes, but is not limited to the; floors, workbenches, tools, machines and equipment.
By deep cleaning your facility you are ensuring that any non-conformity stands out, such as an oil leak from a machine onto a bright, newly painted clean floor. This will also prevent machinery and equipment from unnecessary deterioration as shine involves performing regular maintenance on equipment and machinery. When business’ plan for maintenance ahead of time it means they can catch problems and prevent breakdowns, meaning less wasted time and no loss of profits related to work stoppages.
One of the hardest places to clean is the floor, so it is vital to ensure you have a suitable coating, such as Meon’s FloorCote which is available in a water-based version specifically designed for facilities. Not only is it low odour, but also has excellent resistance to chemicals, water, oils, greases and mechanical abrasion, making it perfect for floors within warehouses. FloorCote is also available in anti-slip which is an ideal coating for high traffic areas such as pedestrian walkways, reducing the risk of accident or injury.
Now you need to ensure the steps taken within the first three stages of 5S become standardised. To do this you will need to establish procedures to ensure the consistency of implementing the first three S’ practices. Develop a work structure that will support the new practices and make it part of the daily routine, such as employee’s cleaning their individual work areas daily, or setting cleaning frequency and schedule. Doing so makes people take ownership of the space, which in turn means people will be more invested in their work and in the company. Keeping the workplace clean and pleasing to work in also improves staff morale.
- Tip: How to clean may seem obvious, but make sure you show employees—especially new employees—which cleaners to use, where cleaning materials are stored, and how to clean equipment, particularly if it’s equipment that could be easily damaged.
‘Standardise’ by assigning regular tasks, create schedules, and posts instructions so these activities become routines. By putting in place standard operating procedures for 5S orderliness won’t go backwards but will only improve, in turn improving efficiency and productivity. Initially, people will probably need reminders about 5S and small periods of time may need to be set aside for 5S tasks. But over time, tasks will become routine and 5S organising and cleaning will become a part of regular work activities.
Visual cues such as floor marking tape play an important role in 5S. It can provide direction and keep items in place, in many cases without words. The tape provided by Meon, MightyLine, has no dry time and is easily removed, meaning changes in areas where tape have been used are quickly and easily completed.
Once standard procedures for 5S are in place, you must perform the ongoing work of maintaining those procedures and updating them as necessary. ‘Sustain’ refers to the process of keeping 5S running smoothly, but also of keeping everyone in the organisation involved. Managers need to participate, as does every employee throughout the business, whether that be the warehouse or the office. Sustain is about making 5S a long-term program, not just a onetime event or short-term project, and when 5S is sustained over time, that’s when you will start to notice continuous positive results. To help sustain 5S practices, make sure all new employees (or employees who switch departments) receive training about their area’s 5S procedures.
5S is not only a system for housekeeping, it’s an integrated approach for productivity improvement. It is a culture designed to increase production, improve quality, reduce cost, improve safety and boost morale. To achieve the best success, the nature and implication of each of the 5S’ needs to be understood by each employee and should be regularly practiced.
Further to publishing a FREE white paper on LEAN management, we are currently offering FREE consultations for facilities and have a wealth of knowledge to share with you. We have decades of experience delivering great surfaces, let us help you to deliver them too.
Give us a call on 02392 200 606 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a consultation.