5S System Improves Workplace Organization, Productivity » CBIA (2023)

In a manufacturing production environment, having an organized and orderly workplace leads to better flow and greater efficiency and often allows workers to produce more at a sustained rate.

5S is a method designed to create such an environment, leading to better control, productivity, and safety in a clean and orderly work area that exposes waste and errors. Waste is defined as any activity that takes time, resources, or space but does not add value to a product or service.

5S System Improves Workplace Organization, Productivity » CBIA (1)

The 5Ss are action steps that begin with the letter S: Sort, Set in order, Shine, Standardize, and Sustain. Key team members should weigh in to create consensus when addressing each S in the process.

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Let’s look at each step individually:

Sort. The purpose of the Sort procedure is to review items, such as tools and equipment, which are used in production of a specific work area. Keep what is needed, add what’s missing, and remove what is not needed. Place a red tag on items not needed or in the wrong work area.

Set aside the items used every day at the work station and place the supplies you may need but don’t use regularly in a separate storage area where they are easily accessible.

Set in order. Once you have removed the unnecessary items from the workspace, it’s time to find a proper place for the necessary ones used regularly for production.

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In the set in order process, you evaluate the efficiency of your current workflow. Review the steps and motions employees take to perform their work task along with the required tools and supplies.

Determine the most logical arrangement for the items you need, keeping in mind their frequency of use, ease of access and return. Safety is also a factor as well as eliminating wasted movement, reaching, and effort.

The use of visual cues are encouraged such as a map of the workspace showing where the equipment and tools are now located. From here, you can visually demonstrate the steps employees must follow to perform their assigned tasks for that specific area of production.

Familiarize employees with visual management techniques, properly train them, and ensure leadership is committed to the program’s success.

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Shine. This step is the time to shine which involves cleaning the work area and everything in it, eliminating all forms of contamination including dirt, debris, dust and fluids. This is not just for the sake of housekeeping but to establish a new standard.

Also inspect equipment to look for wear and tear that might lead to its failure during use. This should essentially be done every day along with daily cleaning to ensure the best operating condition of the tools and equipment and to replace or repair anything that needs it.

Standardize. In this step you standardize the first three Ss in 5S by developing rules to maintain them. Rules should focus on locations of things in the work space, position of items in the work area, amount of supplies required for the production task, cleaning schedules, and procedures to do the job.

Once you have standardized procedures within the designated work area, document them using visual mapping cues to establish standards that are easy to follow and understand. The standards help ensure that 5S becomes an essential part of daily work and enables workers to manage and control their area.

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Sustain. This step is where you sustain the gains made implementing the methods of the four previous steps. The best means to make this happen is to stick to the rules and procedures. This will lead to new, daily habits which will facilitate productivity and create more consistent quality.

Familiarize employees with the visual management techniques, properly train them, and ensure the leadership of the organization is committed to the program’s success.

The benefits of utilizing the 5S system are numerous, including work standardization, reduction in cycle time, decreased changeover time, better quality and greater safety. A gratifying side effect of the 5S system is that it may also improve employee morale.

For more information about 5S, contact CONNSTEP (info@connstep.org; 800.266.6672).

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How can 5S help improve the productivity of the workplace? ›

The benefits of utilizing the 5S system are numerous, including work standardization, reduction in cycle time, decreased changeover time, better quality and greater safety. A gratifying side effect of the 5S system is that it may also improve employee morale.

What is the 5S approach for productivity and quality improvement? ›

By implementing a lean 5S system - sort, set in order, shine, standardize, sustain - organizations can create a clean, well ordered, and disciplined work environment. Many companies implement only the first three steps, hoping the last two will automatically follow.

How 5S workplace is effective in the workplace? ›

5S is a system for organizing spaces so work can be performed efficiently, effectively, and safely. This system focuses on putting everything where it belongs and keeping the workplace clean, which makes it easier for people to do their jobs without wasting time or risking injury.

What is the purpose of the 5S system in the workplace a organization B efficiency C cleanliness D All of the above? ›

The purpose of 5S is to make a workplace function better by making it an easier place to work. This occurs by making spaces make sense; tools and materials are placed in logical locations based on who needs them, how frequently they're needed, etc. Spaces are cleaned regularly. Cleaning and organization become habits.

How important 5S in an organization and how it helps the organization improve and achieved its organizational goals? ›

5S is designed to decrease waste while optimizing productivity through maintaining an orderly workplace and using visual cues to attain more consistent operational results. 5S refers to five steps – sort, set in order, shine, standardize and sustain (also known as the 5 pillars of a visual workplace).

What is 5S and how is it useful in continuous improvement? ›

5S is a cyclical methodology: sort, set in order, shine, standardize, sustain the cycle. This results in continuous improvement.

What is the relationship between productivity and 5S? ›

First, the 5S method for workplace organization is a methodical approach to higher productivity. Better productivity means producing more in less time and that translates into satisfied customers, thus a relationship of trust is built. That's a much-needed differentiator in their teeming industry.

What are the 5S of maintaining workplace? ›

What is 5S? 5S is a systematic way of organizing workplaces by eliminating waste, improving flow, and reducing the number of processes where possible. It applies the five principles: Sort (seiri), Set in order (seiton), Shine (seiso), Standardize (seiketsu), and Sustain (shitsuke).

Do you think 5S is important in the workplace? ›

The 5S philosophy is “a place for everything and everything in its place,” and helps to eliminate wasted time, wasted space and wasted inventory. Implementing 5S raises product quality and improves work productivity, resulting in lower costs and higher efficiencies.

What is the most important of the 5S in workplace organization Why? ›

The main focus of the 5S system is to put everything where it belongs and to keep the workplace clean, thereby ensuring people do their jobs without wasting time or risking injury.

What are the benefits of 5S system? ›

The key benefits of 5S are:

It organizes, labels and places close at hand those tools and materials that are needed on a regular basis. The result is that more time is spent productively and less time is wasted finding needed tools and materials.

Is maintaining 5S beneficial to business organizations explain why? ›

Improvement in Safety: 5S helps in crating a safe workplace by reducing accidents caused by Slippery floors, eliminating oil leaks and creating visual indicators. Improves Machine Uptime: By following daily cleaning and fixing the abnormalities, the breakdowns of the machines would significantly reduce.

Which of the 5S is the most important why? ›

Standardize. The fourth step has been called the most important step in the 5S Process. In this step we must develop the standards for the 5S system. They will be the standards by which the previous 5S steps are measured and maintained.

How do I implement 5S in my organization? ›

You can start implementing 5S by providing training to your staff to understand the system. This may be followed up with one-day sessions with each employee or team to ensure they are on the same page as far as implementation is concerned.

How can you apply 5S at work give one example each? ›

Sorting Methods for 5S

Overall, tools and objects that are easy to find helps to boost productivity in the workplace. A simple example of this organizational effort would be in an auto-mechanic shop where every single tool used in the facility is assigned a specific location to be kept when not in use.

What is the goal of 5S principle? ›

The goal of 5S is to create a clean, uncluttered environment that allows people to do their jobs without wasting time, while also lowering the risk of injury. The five words in 5S represent the five steps to accomplish this goal. They are sort, set, shine, standardize and sustain.

What is the main benefit of 5S? ›

The goal of 5S is to eliminate waste and improve efficiency by creating a well-organized and clean workplace. The benefits of 5S are numerous. A well-implemented 5S program can lead to reduced lead times, increased productivity, improved safety, and decreased costs.


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