Another approach to 5S+1

This week’s Issue | 25/11/2019

Many years ago I was handed “carte blanche” to deploy Lean Methodologies across the organization.  Many speak about gaining support from the top … something we had since the activities and project plan had been approved by the Board of Directors .. so what was the problem?   A significant attribute within our deployment was the adoption of 5S which was woven intricately among the many other Lean Methodologies that were part of the overall project plan.

Since it was so challenging to gain approval we had spent many months putting together our project plan complete with milestones and calculatable ROI on our initiatives.  So imagine my fear when one of our site Controllers called to inquire how they to justify the spend required for the scripted 5S requirements.  We had spent month developing our standards which included floor colour, signage and work station design … it was in essence out with the old and in with the new … but of course the investment needed to be justified and just not an activity because it made sense (an expense) … Also we had calculated that our 5S implementation was going to be around 12-14 dollars per square foot which included painting floors, walls and ceilings.  I was stumped ….

If you embark on 5S as a stand-alone initiative it runs the risk of becoming an expense and a giant housekeeping activity without calculated benefits … but if you focus on other Lean Methodologies first that require and include 5S then it becomes easy to justify and show good ROI … and if you do this then you are starting and deploying on an effective Lean journey.

See some of our hints in this week’s newsletter … and of course contact us for additional coaching and guidance.

About Richard
Senior Lead Practitioner