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5S Organization Check
Benchmarking 5S Organization: are you world-class?
A safe and efficient workplace requires structure and discipline; 5S provides the framework for systematic workplace organization. It is the foundation of Lean, Six Sigma, and TQM. While the 5S process is straight forward, measuring 5S can be confusing. Especially when audits are based on simple checklists, results depend more on the auditor than the assessed conditions. A multi-dimensional 5S-assessment makes audits more accurate and results more meaningful.
How to measure Organizational Level
The 5S Organization Checklist assesses how well the factory and office is organized based on 5S principles. The 5S assessment scores audit frequency, 5S knowledge level, cleanliness, robustness of housekeeping process, degree of standardization, organizational system approach, and tagging frequency. The 5S Organization Checklist includes 7 points and takes 7 minutes to complete.
About 5S Basics
‘Defining a place for everything and putting everything on its place’ is the basic principle of housekeeping and workplace organization. Let’s quickly review the five phases to ensure that we all have the same understanding:
- Seiri/Sort: sorting or sifting, removing what is not needed.
- Seiton/Set: setting items in order, defining a place for everything.
- Seiso/Shine: sweeping clean, painting, repairing, fixing loose items.
- Seiketsu/Standardize: spic and span, defining process and ownership.
- Shitsuke/Sustain: self-discipline, checklists, scoring, feedback, actions.
The Problem with simple 5S Checklists
To improve workplace organization in factories and offices, we need a reliable way to measure 5S. Counting how many items are properly stored would not be very practical as there are thousands of different parts, documents, supplies, tools, fixtures to go through; it would take days or even weeks.
Instead of counting, most 5S audit tools assess operating conditions based on broad definitions to keep things simple. But when criteria are too general, results depend more on the auditor then on the assessed conditions. In technical terms this means that Gauge Reproducibility & Repeatability (GRR) of 5S-testing is low, while variability between 5S-assessors is high, making single dimensional checklists ineffective.
To achieve a more reliable and meaningful result, an effective 5S audit must score multiple dimensions, include system configuration, audit frequency, knowledge level, observed cleanliness, robustness of housekeeping process, degree of standardization, organizational system approach, and tagging frequency.
Quick Check for Experts
The following test is designed for experienced auditors, people with a ‘trained eye’ and clear performance standards to measure against. The ‘3-Minute 5S-Check’ is a quick and practical way to assess cleanliness and organizational level in factories, stores, home, and offices. The checklist covers the five phases of the 5S-process, using three checkpoints per phase (a-b-c) for a total of 3×5=15 checkpoints. Answering each question in 12 seconds or less, the audit can be completed in three minutes or less.
The 3-Minute 5S-Check
Guideline for measuring 5S, using the 15-point checklist below: (1) Review the 15 questions and check all conditions that apply, mark all “Yes” answers. (2) Stop at first ‘No’ answer, when a condition is not true. (3) Calculate score by adding all “Yes” marks and dividing the result by three, post the 5S-score: 0.0…5.0. Do the 5S Quick Check now:
- Safety check passed: [yes|no]
- Items sorted to agreed level: [yes|no]
- Unusable items removed: [yes|no]
- Area looks organized: [yes|no]
- Items stored at optimal place: [yes|no]
- Tools returned after use: [yes|no]
- Area clean and trash removed: [yes|no]
- Machines and tools well maintained: [yes|no]
- Building and infrastructure in good working condition: [yes|no]
- Items have a defined place: [yes|no]
- Spaces are marked and labeled: [yes|no]
- Standards documented as photo or procedure: [yes|no]
- Area regularly audited: [yes|no]
- Checklists filled and score posted: [yes|no]
- Deviations identified and actions assigned: [yes|no]
Benefits of 5S Auditing
Regular auditing provides frequent feedback and triggers improvementss that bring the workplace to the a higher level of safety, orderliness, and efficiency. Assess organization and housekeeping level now; it’s FREE and just takes 5 minutes to get your score relative to world-class benchmarks.
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