What is 5S Methodology

The 5S methodology is a technique used to establish and maintain quality environment in an organisation. The name stands for 5 Japanese words
Mr. Hiroyuki Hirano, international consultant called the “5S’s” the Japanese “S” words
Seiri, Seiton, Seiso, Seiketsu and Shitsuke). The English translation for these words are Organisation, orderliness, cleanliness, standardised cleanup and discipline.
1. Seiri (organisation)
Organisation means clearly distinguishing between
•What is required and to be kept
•What is not required and to be discarded
Sort out items and discard the unnecessary
5 questions about Seiri:
1.Do you find items scattered in your workplace.
2.Are there boxes, papers and other items left in a disorganised manner.
3.Are there equipments and tools placed on the floor.
4.Are all items sorted out and placed in designated spots.
5.Are tools and stationery properly sorted and stored.

Orderliness means organising the way required things  are kept so that anyone can find and use them easily. Arrange a place for everything. Everything in its place.
2. Seiton (orderliness)
5 questions about Seiton :
1.Are passage ways & storage places clearly indicated.
2.Are commonly used tools & stationery separated from those seldom used.
3.Are containers & boxes stacked up properly.
4.Are fire extinguishers & hydrants readily accessible.
5.Are there grooves, cracks or bumps on the floor which hinder work or safety.
3. Seisoh (cleanliness)
Clean your workplace thoroughly.
•Cleanliness is closely related to the ability to turn out quality products.
•Cleanliness means sweeping floors and keeping things in order.
•Cleanliness also entails saving labour by finding ways to prevent dirt, dust and debris from piling up in the workshop.
•Cleanliness should be integrated into daily maintenance tasks to combine cleaning check points with maintenance check points.
5 questions about Siesoh:
1. Are the floor surfaces dirty.
2. Are machines and equipment dirty.
3. Are wires and pipes dirty or stained.
4. Are machine nozzles dirty by lubricants and inks.
5. Are shades, light bulbs & light reflectors dirty.
4. Seiketsu (standardization)
Standardized cleanup means that organization, orderliness, & cleanliness are being maintained.
Maintain a standard.
Standardized cleanup differs from the first 3S.
5. Shitsuke (discipline)
•Discipline means always following specified (& standardised) procedures.
•Train people to be disciplined
•Discipline refers to social and safety conventions, such as friendly greetings among coworkers and wearing work uniforms, name tags and helmets.
•All of these contribute to safety, a clean work environment, and a positive work attitude.
•The first four S’s can be implemented thoroughly without difficulty if the workplace is maintained. Such a workplace is likely to enjoy high productivity and high quality.
•Discipline is a pivotal factor of the production system as a whole
The first three pillars can be thought of as activities whereas standardisation is a state or condition at certain point of time.

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Originally posted 2011-03-24 10:04:00.

TAKT time, Lead time and Cycle time

While we are implementing lean we come across three mostly used terms for calculating the Time Spent i.e, Takt Time, Lead Time and Cycle time . Often people get confused of these terms and use Takt Time, Lead Time and Cycle time interchangeably. eventhough they are distinct.

These are used to Optimize the workflow and also to calculate on the capacity to meet the customer demand. Little confusion in this will lead to confused production line.

Now let us get to the details of these.

Lead time : The most simple of these words. The clock starts when we have an order from customer and ends with the time the order is delivered to customer. Let us say we have the order on 15-Sep-2018 and and delivered to customer on 20-Sep-2018. In this case, the Lead time if 5 Days.

Cycle time : Cycle time is the time taken for Production of one Unit. In other words its the time taken from Start of Production to Shipment. Let’s Say, we are able to produce 400 units in 100 days, the Cycle time is 100 /400 = 0.25 Days per Unit.

Takt Time : This tells you how much time you can take. It is the rate at which we can Produce to meet the customer demand. In other words, this is the time available with us to produce one unit. Lets say we have a demand of 200 Units from customer and this is to be delivered in 100 Days. In this case, the Takt Time is 100/200 = 0.5 Days Per Unit.

Using these times, we can simply ensure the production is planned to optimize the resources and meeting customer demands.

Spaghetti Plot – Visualize the process inefficiencies caused by layout

Spaghetti Plot is a method of viewing observations to visualize possible flows through systems. Flows depicted in this way appear like noodles, hence the coining of this term Spaghetti Plot.
This method of statistics was first used to track routing through factories. Visualizing flow in this way can cut inefficiency within the flow of a system. In regards to animal populations and weather buoys drifting through the ocean, they are drawn to study distribution and migration patterns. Within meteorology, these diagrams can help determine confidence in a specific weather forecast, as well as positions and intensities of high and low pressure systems. They are composed of deterministic forecasts from atmospheric models or their various ensemble members. Within medicine, they can illustrate the effects of drugs on patients during drug trials.
Spaghetti plot is one of the main tools used to lean the system especially focusing on the layouts in the shop-floor. In process flow, focus should be on the number of touch points. Spaghetti plot gives a visual indication of the inefficiencies in the system caused by the layouts and flow. The aim is to focus on reducing the number of touch points and travel time in the process by optimizing the layout.
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Single-Minute Exchange of Die (SMED)

Single-Minute Exchange of Die (SMED) is one of the many lean production methods for reducing waste in a manufacturing process. It provides a rapid and efficient way of converting a manufacturing process from running the current product to running the next product. This rapid changeover is key to reducing production lot sizes and thereby improving flow (Mura). The phrase “single minute” does not mean that all changeover and startups should take only one minute, but that they should take less than 10 minutes (in other words, “single-digit minute”). Closely associated is a yet more difficult concept, One-Touch Exchange of Die, (OTED), which says changeover can and should take less than 100 seconds. A Die is a tool used in manufacturing. However SMED’s utility of is not limited to manufacturing

The concept arose in the late 1950s and early 1960s, when Shigeo Shingo was consulting to a variety of companies including Toyota, and was contemplating their inability to eliminate bottlenecks at car body-moulding presses. The bottlenecks were caused by long tool changeover times which drove up production lot sizes. The economic lot size is calculated from the ratio of actual production time and the ‘change-over’ time; the time taken to stop production of a product and start production of the same, or another, product. If change-over takes a long time then the lost production due to change-overs drives up the cost of the actual production itself. This can be seen from the table below where the change-over and processing time per unit are held constant whilst the lot size is changed. The Operation time is the unit processing time with the overhead of the change-over included. The Ratio is the percentage increase in effective operating time caused by the change-over. SMED is the key to manufacturing flexibility.

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Seven wastes in Service industry

The original seven wastes (Muda (Japanese term)) were defined by Taiichi Ohno, the father of the Toyota Production System. These wastes have been often redefined to better fit new organisations, industries, or external pressures. The effect of the waste is visible in a manufacturing industry. Adopting the Seven wastes in Service industry  is really difficult as the flow and the loss due to these wastes is invisible and mostly incidental.

One redefinition of these wastes for service operations by Bicheno and Holweg (2009) is as follows:

1. Delay on the part of customers waiting for service, for delivery, in queues, for response, not arriving as promised. The customer’s time may seem free to the provider, but when she takes custom elsewhere the pain begins.
2. Duplication. Having to re-enter data, repeat details on forms, copy information across, answer queries from several sources within the same organisation.
3. Unnecessary Movement. Queuing several times, lack of one-stop, poor ergonomics in the service encounter.
4. Unclear communication, and the wastes of seeking clarification, confusion over product or service use, wasting time finding a location that may result in misuse or duplication.
5. Incorrect inventory. Being out-of-stock, unable to get exactly what was required, substitute products or services.
6. An opportunity lost to retain or win customers, a failure to establish rapport, ignoring customers, unfriendliness, and rudeness.
7. Errors in the service transaction, product defects in the product-service bundle, lost or damaged goods.
These Seven wastes in Service industry  if recognised, will help the organiational transoformantion extremely easy.
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Identification of Six Sigma Projects – Idea Generation

We had some guidance on the six Sigma Projects. Now let us focus on identification of Six Sigma Projects.
Six Sigma is accomplished one project at a time. Identification of Six Sigma Projects shall aim at breakthrough Improvements and not simple goals. The billion of dollars saved by companies around the world is the cumulative effect of properly selecting and defining business issues that can be assigned to Green Belts and Black Belts for solution.  Six Sigma projects are a key action that you can take to reach your organization’s strategic goals.

I have gathered some of the ideas for the Six Sigma Projects from Various Sources. Some of these are obvious and can be applied across any organization after careful evaluation. You can study them, based on your current status these can be implemented formally as projects. the prioritization shall be specific to the organization. The best approach would be pick the idea, do a brainstorming and finally come to a conclusion on the priorities. The prioritization can be done based on the current status, Quickness in results, availability of data, and so on. One of the Main criteria shall be the priorities of the Top Management who must commit the resources and give support for the project to be a success.

General Ideas for Six Sigma Projects.

  1. Customer Satisfaction improvement.
  2. Reduce the Scrap or rejections
  3. Reduce the down time of resources (Machinery) or to increase uptime.
  4. Reduce the Rework
  5. Increase the output
  6. Increase throughput (output from multiple processes, locations, departments) or Reduce bottlenecks
  7. Reduce Quality Defects from the output
  8. Reduce customer complaints.
  9. Increase the process Velocity ( lean)
  10. Any item reworked in a process (sales contracts, invoices, surgeries, software, etc.)
  11. Reduce the Process Variation (Sales, Purchase, Recruitment  Etc)
  12. Reduce Variation of input consumption (product)
  13. Reduce the time taken for Inspection
  14. Reduce the multiple hand-offs
  15. Findings from the Internal, External, Customer and Regulatory Audits
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What is Value Stream Mapping (VSM)

Value Stream Mapping (VSM) is a Lean tool, to visualize the various steps and their contribution to the overall process.
Value
When a product or service has been perceived or appraised to fulfill a need or desire–as defined by the customer–the product or service may be said to have value or worth. Components of value may include quality, utility, functionality, capacity, aesthetics, timeliness or availability, price, etc.
Value Stream

All the activities (both value-added and non-value added) required within an organization to deliver a specific service; “everything that goes into” creating and delivering the “value” to the end-customer.
Process Map
A visual representation of the sequential flow of a process. Used as a tool in problem solving, this technique makes opportunities for improvement.
Value Stream Mapping A graphical representation of all tasks and activities needed to transform input materials and information into an output. 
Value Stream Analysis – The identification of all the specific activities occurring along the value stream, represented pictorially in a value stream map; see waste, unevenness, and overburden, size the opportunity, share a vision, communicate visually, permission to change, predict results
Non Value Added (NVA) – 
Those process steps in a Value Stream that take time, resources or space, but do not transform or shape the product or service to meet the needs of the customer 
Value Added Activity – An activity can qualify to be value adding, if the customer cares, perceptable change and first time right.
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