5S is not just a practice, but a culture that has to be interwoven in an organisation’s day-to-day working. It involves every person at the organisation, top tier to the bottom, to make the working of the organisation smoother. This Japanese technique used for keeping a place organised, efficient and clean, is not bound for the office but can be used in every aspect of life. It has proven to be highly beneficial to an organisation’s productivity, however, to reap its maximum benefits, 5S should be successfully and sustainably followed. Here are 6 expert tips to do just that.
Check the 4Ws (Where, When, When & What) and 1H (How)
To solve a problem, such as delay, mismanagement or wastage at work, first find out what the problem is and where it’s located. Who is responsible to act upon the situation? When should the solution be implemented? How can it be implemented properly? Once you are able to answer these questions, your journey to a successful 5S begins.
Training and Brain Storming
If you’re organisation works in a time-sensitive field, and the employees don’t have a window to sit for this and brainstorm, look for professional help. Organise a training session so that the participants are encouraged to follow the methodology of 5S. If the organisation can manage to sit and conjure up a plan on its own, then the 5S plan should be decided and discussed with all of the employees.
Don’t Skip A Step
To prevent your system from crumbling, never skip a step from the 5S. It will just withhold the other steps and discourage others to discontinue their tasks as well. It might seem harmless at first but to ensure absolute success, following all of the steps is crucial.
Once the system is in action, keep following up. Keep the communication constant so that none of the participants loose interest and enthusiasm for the system. Keep letting everyone know about the work that you did and remind them of the task they’re required to do.
Visual Input, Physical Output
Make the 5S method you’re using visible. Give visual input to the participants so that they work better and can access the system of the workplace better. Visual inputs can be in the form of sticky notes, labels, flow charts etc. These can be removes once everyone is accommodated to the office surroundings and the whereabouts of stuff but should be kept as a backup for new-comers. Make the participants put up their tasks and tick them off when done for the sense of fulfilment, which encourages them to work better.
In offices of today, most operations are digital. There are hardly any physical ephemera to arrange and sort through. But that doesn’t mean that 5S methodology isn’t applicable in such organisations. It can be easily done digitally as well. Sorting through files that will be needed or not, storing them into named folders, hard disks or online drives and arranging all data according to its frequency of use.
Customize the success plan according to your organisation and its needs. But following these tips rigorously is sure to increase the performance of 5S method at your organisation.