To improve the usability of the metalshop, I think it would be good to implement the 5S framework as a method of how tools, consumables and other items are stored. I’d like to use this thread to document the process as I go along. If anyone would like to assist in this process let me know and we can collaborate on it.
I plan on starting with the easy and obvious things that will make a big difference in usability and maximize the efficiency in which we use the space. The process will be followed in mostly a linear order for each area, although the order areas are targeted will be mixed. I will follow up shortly with a post about my initial plan.
For those unfamiliar, the 5S process (copied from wikipedia) is:
- Check all items in a location and evaluate whether or not their presence at the location is useful or necessary.
- Remove unnecessary items as soon as possible. Place those that cannot be removed immediately in a ‘red tag area’ so that they are easy to remove later on.
2. Set in Order
- Arrange work stations in such a way that all tooling / equipment is in close proximity, in an easy to reach spot and in a logical order adapted to the work performed. Place components according to their uses, with the frequently used components being nearest to the workplace.
- Arrange all necessary items so that they can be easily selected for use. Make it easy to find and pick up necessary items.
- Assign fixed locations for items. Use clear labels, marks or hints so that items are easy to return to the correct location and so that it is easy to spot missing items.
- Clean the workplace and equipment on a daily basis, or at another appropriate (high frequency) cleaning interval.
- Inspect the workplace and equipment while cleaning.
- Develop a work structure that will support the new practices and make it part of the daily routine.
- Ensure everyone knows their responsibilities of performing the sorting, organizing and cleaning.
- Use photos and visual controls to help keep everything as it should be.
- Review the status of 5S implementation regularly using audit checklists.
- Organize training sessions.
- Perform regular audits to ensure that all defined standards are being implemented and followed.
- Implement improvements whenever possible. Worker inputs can be very valuable for identifying improvements.
- When issues arise, identify their cause and implement the changes necessary to avoid recurrence.