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(Solved): BUSINESS COMMUNICATION – Homework | Project 1: 5S Implementation ...


The 5S system is a technique to ensure workplaces are clean and well-ordered. It is essential to have a stable work environment in order to improve. The 5S system is set of activities that are performed to establish or improve the visual order of an area. There are Japanese words for each activity. In English, the titles of the activities vary slightly from author to author.

Sort: Visual order is established by sorting out what is needed from what is present.

Set in order or straighten: Establish a visual system to show, at a glance, whether items are in their designated locations.

Shine: Cleaning typically includes storage areas, equipment, and surroundings and dusting or heavy-duty scrubbing.

Standardize: To assist in keeping visual order in an area, procedures or rules must be put in place to keep the area free from unnecessary items, necessary items in the proper place, and the area clean.

Sustain: Improvements must be made permanent and then improved upon through communication and planned audits.

One method to evaluate improvement is to document the beginning and ending conditions. A goal sheet and spider diagram can be used in this way. To complete the goal sheet, check one statement in each section which corresponds to the state of the area. The spider diagram is visual representation of the statements checked on the goal sheet. For example, if the goal sheet statements checked were 1 for sort, 2 for set in order, 1 for shine, 1 for standardize, and 1 for sustain, then the spider diagram would show a large, and uneven pentagon shape as those values are connected. An ideal area would have the five statements checked in each section, resulting in the star at the center of the spider diagram. By completing the goal sheet and spider diagram before and after 5S activity, improvements can be easily documented. Areas for future improvements can also be documented.

Project Activity

Select a small area for which you have responsibility and which would benefit from the scrutiny of 5S activities. That is, if your desk is already neat, organized, and well-labeled, then choose another area. Appropriate areas for this project could be a desktop, closet shelf, book bag, cupboard, or drawer. If you are working, you could use an area at your workplace if you have responsibility for the area.

When an area has been selected, work through the following steps and document activity as it is completed. Keep notes on all activities and take photographs frequently. These notes and pictures may assist you in generating the required documentation.

  • Take a picture of the current state of the area.
  • Make a list of everything currently in the area. It is important to make an exhaustive and accurate list.
  • Based on the current situation, complete a 5S Goal Sheet and spider diagram.
  • Perform the sorting activity. Items that do not belong in this area should be moved to a red tag area. Record results labeling listed items as necessary or red tag. The appropriate people should be involved in the decision of what to do with red tagged items.
  • Perform activities related to setting in order or simplifying access. Record results.
  • Perform activities related to shining. Record results.
  • Perform activities related to standardizing the area. Make a new list of items located in this area. The new list should include only necessary items. Storage areas should be marked or labeled. Remember: A place for every thing and every thing in its place.
  • Take an after photo of the area.
  • Complete 5S Goal Sheet and spider diagram to document the improvements.
  • Plan how results will be sustained.

Documentation Packet

Write an introductory paragraph describing the area chosen, the types of items currently in the area (not a list, just a sampling), what activities occur in the area (storage, studying, cooking, etc.), who uses the area, and the general appearance of the area.

Briefly present your activities with the results of each step. Include photographs, lists, goal sheets, and diagrams. It should be clear that the activities involved more than cleaning up the area.

Write a paragraph discussing the improvements made (compare goal sheets from before and after project activities), how the changes will improve the activities related to this area, and how the changes will be sustained.



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