What is 5S
5S Training will help you with implementing one of the most important lean manufacturing tools; that of 5S, it is also one of the simplest to implement. 5S is a methodical way to organize your workplace to turn it into a safer, ergonomic, more efficient environment through organizing your layout and introducing visual management and standard ways of working.
5S is a team approach and requires the participation of everyone within the area in which is applied to be effective. 5S works by helping the team to eliminate the seven muda of lean manufacturing, the seven wastes; Transport, Inventory, Motion, Waiting, Over-processing, Overproduction, and Defects.
The five steps of 5S are;
- 5S Seiri; Sort, Clearing, Classify
- 5S Seiton; Straighten, Simplify, Set in order, Configure
- 5S Seiso; Sweep, shine, Scrub, Clean and Check
- 5S Seiketsu; Standardize, stabilize, Conformity
- 5S Shitsuke; Sustain, self discipline, custom and practice
Some companies add safety as a 6th step making 6S.
Why 5S Training
Like any new discipline or skill it is important to ensure that your employees fully understand it and know how they should implement it. It is unlikely that if this is your first 5S program that all of your employees are fully conversant with 5S.
Therefore you will need to either hire a 5S trainer or 5S consultant to help you with your 5S program, alternatively you could employ or train up an internal 5S training champion to lead your 5S program.
Free 5S Training Presentation
5S Training Exercise – Download free 5S training PDF
Training Exercise – Download free 5S training PowerPoint presentation
To access a full range of 5S training presentations and PDFs that are free to download visit our 5S Training Presentations.
5S Training Approach
5S is best learned through doing it, it is not a skill that lends itself to a few days away in a hotel training suite followed by several weeks of inaction and forgetfulness.
I have run many 5S programs and seen others run them also and can say that in my opinion that by far the best approach is one of in-house 5S training and facilitation led by someone with experience in the disciplines of 5S.
The 5S training should be preceded by ensuring that there are clear objectives for both the direction of the company and for the specific working area in which 5S is to be applied. Measures of performance should also be reviewed or set in place against which later improvements can be judged.
5S Training should then begin with an initial session to explain the aims of the 5S implementation in terms of the overall company as well as the individuals. This should then be followed with a brief presentation regarding the seven wastes of lean manufacturing and an overview of the steps of 5S. It is also useful at this point if you have a simple 5S simulation to run so that they can see the potential for improvement.
The first session should very much focus on the first three of the 5S; 5S Sort, 5S Set in Order and 5S Shine. The team should be given an overview of what it is they are to be doing then let loose within the area with clear instructions to begin the first stage of 5S; Sort. The 5S trainer should aid the team and ensure that they stay on track, a deadline should be set for an hour or two (depending on the size and complexity of the area in question) and the team should sit to review what they have done and discovered.
The team should progress through the first three stages over a period of 2 or three days at the end of which the 5S team should present back to management what they have achieved. They should also have at this stage a list of actions to be implemented over the coming weeks before implementing the next two stages.
A break of a few weeks depending on outstanding actions should then be allowed, followed by the next session which should review and reinforce the first three stages of 5S then move onto the final 2 stages of 5S standardize and 5S Sustain.
Hiring an external 5S Consultant or Trainer
If you are hiring a 5S consultant be careful as the standards of 5S consultants vary considerably from your local expert who is trying to go it alone after losing his latest job to the big international consultants who will charge you something akin to your firstborn child but will deliver you their weight in gold. Unless you have a candidate in house or intend to hire a specific employee for the position I would recommend that you spend the money to have your employees trained professionally in the lean manufacturing tool of 5S.
In house 5S trainers
If you have a suitable expert or have someone that you intend to train up to be able train your employees then please ensure that you support them fully with the right tools and aids for their 5S training program;
- 5S Books to use as either a shared resource with your employees or more in depth for your trainer. You can also download 5S books to read on your PC or even your phone.
- 5S Posters to advertise and remind your employees as to what your aims are to train them in 5S.
- 5S DVDs for individual and group training; very useful for seeing examples of 5S in action.
- 5S Pocket Guides to use as giveaways in your training and as handy reminders.
- 5S simulations and games to use as part of your training package.
- 5S training materials that contain many of the above items.
- 5S supplies such as 5S red tags which can be very useful when you begin your implementation.
Monitoring 5S training effectiveness
I mentioned earlier about ensuring that you have a set of objectives in place for your business and your 5S implementation program, these measures of performance will enable you to judge the improvements generated by your 5S training program.
You should also use feedback from your employees as to what they feel was the effectiveness of the 5S training course, these 5S training courses can vary enormously and although they may generate benefits there may still be scope for far greater improvements. I have often run 5S training courses in a company where they have already gone through the 5S process and made huge improvements.
Sing the praises of the implementation of 5S around your company, publicize and celebrate the improvements that have been made to ensure that those involved feel valued for their contribution and that the rest of your employees will be keen to participate and even compete.
If you have any questions about conducting lean training or would like to add anything to lean manufacturing tools please leave a comment below.