5S Organizing (Seiton) – Stage 2

After you have completed the clearing out stage, you will need to start your 5S organizing (Seiton) of the material or tools that made the cut. Remember, the tools and material remaining are the ones that are used on a regular basis. You will need to determine which ones are used most frequently and should be the most accessible as well as how you are going to store these materials.

The Next Step – 5S Organizing (Seiton)

If the term “A place for everything and everything in its’ place” belongs to any of the steps in “5S”, it’s 5S organizing. By ensuring tools at each workstation are organized, you will eliminate the unnecessary time spent searching for the tools that are never where they should be.

Each storage location should be neatly and clearly labeled. You can go as far as to trace around the tool or object that is being stored so it will be easy for anyone to see where the tool belongs after it has been used. Another idea is to put a picture of the tool where it is stored to identify which tool will be stored there.

Any items that are used at a high frequency should be kept within arms reach of the operator if at all possible. Tools or items that are used less frequently can be stored within the area but not necessarily within arms reach.

Office Organizing

Remember, 5S organizing Seiton applies to more than the production floor, it also applies to the office. On top of the desk, keep only the items being worked on in your working space. All other items should be neatly stored in your in-basket or filed appropriately. Keep the files that are used often in your desk drawers. The other files can be stored in a more remote location.

Another area of concern will be the pen/pencil drawer. Keep only one or two pens/pencils, an eraser, white out, calculator and whatever other instruments you will need. Do not keep excess quantities of these materials in your drawer. Keep only the minimum quantities.

You can go so far as to cut out a piece of styrofoam (or something similar) and place it in your drawer. Cut out one spot for a pen, pencil, eraser, calculator and whatever other tools you need. By cutting out spots for these necessities, you will limit the amout you have on hand. At the end of the day, put your tools back where they belong and they will be ready for you the next day. The target is to find any item in your desk within one second. If you have to look longer, it’s not organized enough.

No matter what setting you work in, you will always benefit when you organize your work area. Time saved not looking for tools or materials will leave more time for productive activities. Don’t stop here, make sure you continue to step three, Cleaning.

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