How to manufacture a 5S program for your facility
Changing processes in a lean, consistent way can improve workflow, quality, attitudes, and safety, according to S&C Electric Co. experiences.
Mark T. Hoske
S&C Electric Co. implemented a 5S program to improve safety and lower costs. Robert M. Dempsey Jr., S&C Electric continuous improvement (CI) manager, helps implement a 5S program at the Chicago-based manufacturer of electric switchgear and related equipment. While different words have been applied to the concepts, the five used at S&C are sort, simplify, shine, standardize, and sustain.
"Safety is so important it always stands alone," Dempsey said, so asnot dilute safety with any 5S measurement. As S&C worked on safetyimprovements, however, lessons learned helped augment workflow,quality, and attendance as well, he suggested.
So where's the waste?
To shape the S&C 5S program, Dempsey and CI his team visitedToyota, Vermeer, Pella, Honda, Danaher, Batesville Casket, Steelcase,Herman Miller, and others.
Here's what Dempsey said he's learned along the way.
-A cultural change was needed to use lean principles to fix keychallenges. Idea was to shift management focus from existingorganizations, technologies, and assets to processes in theorganization, enhancing value and removing waste by looking inward notoutward.
- Waste is anything other than the minimum amount of time, material, people, space, and energy needed to add value to the product or service you're providing.
- Value is any activity that changes form, fit, or function of products or services you're providing. Keep asking, "Will the customer pay for the value you're creating?"
- Lean enterprise is an operating philosophy and system focused on elimination of waste to improve operational and financial performance across the organization, in manufacturing and administrative operations.
- Inconsistent processes yield inconsistent results while consistent processes deliver desired results.
- Lean can be achieved as people use standard processes to get results.Don't be world-class firefighters. Working harder and longer doing thesame things the same way yields the same or declining results. Seek towork smarter not harder. Don't expect change by doing things the sameway.
- Practice continuous improvement, maintaining a passionate belief that there's always a simpler, better way.
Dempsey spoke at the CSCMP Annual Global Conference 2009 in September.
Read other MBT CSCMP coverage :
- Mark T. Hoske, electronic products editor, Manufacturing Business Technology , MBT www.mbtmag.com