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How to implement the 5s program with 5w2h

5s program

The 5S program works with a set of tips and good practices, simple and objective, which offer results in the company’s daily routine. It consists of 5 senses – or 5 thoughts – represented by 5 words of Japanese origin. They are: Seiri, Seiton, Seiso, Seiketsu and Shitsuke.

In order to show a way for the company to achieve the 5S precepts (cleaning, use, tidiness, discipline and hygiene), in today’s text we will present the 5w2h methodology.

Are you interested? So, read on.

Discover the 5S program

For those unfamiliar with the program, we will present the 5S separately. Check it out:

SEIRI: Sense of Use

Approaches the use of materials with balance and common sense. Analyzes and classifies all items according to frequency of use criteria, such as information, objects, etc. Therefore, everything that is expendable is discarded from the work environment.

For this, it is important to carry out a planning of everything that needs to be done, which results in reduced waste, cost and better use of resources.

SEITON: Sense of Organization

He values the importance of having all the necessary things available in an accessible way.

SEISO: Sense of Cleanliness

In the physical space, it works on the importance of eliminating waste and dirt. In the personal relationship, it addresses the need to preserve a transparent and honest work environment.

SEIKETSU: Sense of Standardization and Health

Its main purpose is to maintain distinction, separation, disposition and cleanliness. Thus, bringing together all the characteristics of the previous steps as patterns.

SHITSUKE: Sense of Discipline or Self-Discipline

This step is performed when people start to do what needs to be done, even when there is no direct order or supervision from the boss.

The development of these 5 steps will result in improvements in productivity and safety in the work environment. In addition, the appreciation of human relations and compliance with the necessary administrative and administrative procedures will also be noticeable.

Elaborate an action plan

The Quality Programs assist companies in the process of continuous improvement, but for this to occur, planning is necessary, that is, it is necessary to have an action plan. It is at this point that we understand the 5w2h (or 3h) method as useful for the company to achieve the precepts of the 5S program.

As we will see below, this method will help to define the necessary actions, deadlines and responsibilities – a kind of checklist – for the implementation of 5S in the company. The 5w2h methodology is one of the most recognized and established in the world of quality management.

Use 5w2h to develop your action plan

The term 5w2h refers to 7 words in English, 5 beginning with the letter w and two with the letter h. These words represent questions whose answers result in an action plan.

The 5w

What: What needs to be done?
Why: why are we implementing this idea (in this case, the 5S program)?
Who: who / who are the people who will execute each part of the action plan?
When: How soon will this idea become something real?
Where: at which location (sector, department) will each activity and action plan be developed?

The 2h

How: How do you intend to implement the idea?
How much: what resources (financial, operational, human, etc.) will be needed to run the 5S program?

The third H

The tool can be adapted. For this reason, the most updated material on the topic addresses the existence of a third H. This refers to the term “How measure”, or “how will it be evaluated?”. Adopting it is an option, but it is important to think that the more detailed the plan is, the better your chances of success will be. In addition, assessment is a way to identify failures during and after the process. Therefore, we recommend using the third h.

The elaboration of the plan should not be something “loose”. The recording of responses is extremely important. That’s because it will become a map and a historical record.

As time goes by, new team members will know how the company’s culture works and that each of their responsibilities aims to achieve and maintain the precepts of the 5S program.

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Business photo created by Racool_studio –

Thatiana Sestrem


October 01, 2020

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