Case Study 5S Workshop - Paper Management In A Smaller Office Space

5s workshop Feb 05, 2021

The 5S Workshop

Based on Japanese words that begin with 'S', the 5S philosophy focuses on effective workplace organization and standardized work procedures. 5S is the building block to other Lean improvements 5S simplifies your work environment, reduces waste and non-value activity while improving quality, efficiency, and safety.

  • Sort - The first 'S' focuses on eliminating unnecessary items from the workplace.
  • Set In Order/Simplify - The second 'S' focuses on efficient and effective storage methods - what is needed, where it is needed, in the right amount.
  • Shine/Sweep - Once all the necessary items are in place the next step is to thoroughly clean the work area and create visual signals that allow you to tell at a glance normal vs. abnormal conditions.
  • Standardize - concentrate on standardizing and documenting the best practice for the work area.
  • Sustain - This is by far the most difficult 'S' to implement and achieve. Defines a new "status quo" and standard of workplace organization.

During a 3-day 5S event, participants implement all 5S's to achieve workplace organization and standardization. Once fully implemented, the 5S process can increase morale, create positive impressions on customers, increase efficiency and organization, reduce search time, improve safety, improve ergonomics, space and inventory reductions. The most satisfying part is that all participants can immediately begin applying what they have learned to their own work area.

The Case Study:

When an organization expands one area, it often means that another area is going to lose space. That was exactly the case in this integrated healthcare system. More Specifically, the Safety Office was being reduced by 60% to accommodate an Emergency Department expansion. That is a very big challenge but especially if the current space is disorganized, cluttered and chaotic. Subprocesses were intermingled and visual controls did not exist. A ten-member Multi-disciplinary team accepted the challenge to 5S the Safety Office and reduce its space requirement.

The Challenge  When an organization expands one area, it often means that another area is going to lose space. That was exactly the case in this integrated healthcare system. More Specifically, the Safety Office was being reduced by 60% to accommodate an Emergency Department expansion. That is a very big challenge but especially if the current space is disorganized, cluttered and chaotic. Subprocesses were intermingled and visual controls did not exist. A ten-member Multi-disciplinary team accepted the challenge to 5S the Safety Office and reduce its space requirement.

Targets The Team was charged with overhauling almost every aspect of the Safety Office. Their targets were as follows:

  • Separate each sub-process and improve efficiencies using visual controls
  • Locate needed items together with the ability to deploy quickly
  • Ensure all sub-processes are portable
  • Establish a predetermined, technically prepared location for Incident Command Center
  • Document deployment steps

BEFORE:  Paper management is a common office issue that can easily become overwhelming

AFTER:  Standardized categories and filing systems, allows all team members to find what they need when they need it.

Areas of Focus The specific target areas for this 5S Event were the Quality Compliance and Safety Officers Office. However, several sub-processes were included in this workshop, such as: Employee Health, Decontamination Tent and Supplies, Spill Response, Fit Testing, CPR and other Training Materials, Lost & Found, Incident Command Center and HSRA (Homeland Security) Supplies and Equipment Tracking.

Workshop Actions The Team did an outstanding job of staying focused during the workshop. As a result, almost all of the action items were completed during the workshop with amazing results. Here are a few of the actions taken:

  • Reorganized and developed visual controls for files, binders and manuals
  • Defined ownership and accountability for subprocesses such as Spill Response and Lost & Found
  • Reconfigured the Incident Command Center
  • Ordered HRSA cart
  • Developed visual systems
  • Set up network printer in Safety Office
  • Established a new system for daily work
  • Eliminated the waste and excess materials and supplies
  • Developed process for HRSA supplies and
  • equipment
  • Developed proposal for wiring an alternate
  • Incident Command Center site
  • Developed training plan for the management of the hazardous materials inbound process
  • Established a Sustaining Plan
  • Put in place audits for monitoring

Outcomes The outcomes surpassed even the expectations of the Team. The overall outcome was an organized, standardized, visually oriented office which included the sub-process areas. The Safety Office can now fit comfortably in the new allocated space. Some of the other “big wins” included:

  • Downsizing the Incident Command Center and making it more usable and efficient
  • Adding contingency capacity for many types of incidents
    Color-coding and organizing the
  • Decontamination Drill Bags
  • Developing a process and color-coding for document management in the office
  • Adding space for CPR and Infection Control

Results

Contact Teresa Deason about how we can apply the 5S Workshop to your latest challenge.

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