Lean manufacturing implies changing the approach to operations within a certain enterprise for enhancing their effectiveness by eliminating the common processing errors. This paper will outline a 5S project for tackling the waiting and transportation wastes in the chosen factory regarding the first 3 S’s (sorting, setting in order and shining).
A number of processing errors which decrease the effectiveness of operations significantly can be found in the photo under consideration. Thus, the mess with the tools and materials does not allow workers to proceed to the following steps of production without rearranging the setting. It causes plenty of inconveniences as well as queuing of stages and operations which cannot be performed on time. The lack of the floor space and the incorrect location of the materials induce employees to make too many unnecessary movements for accomplishing a certain task (Lean manufacturing: A brief introduction, n.d.).
Analyzing the organization of the working space in the photo, it can be stated that the workers may need to move the materials for exempting the floor space and performing the operations. Thus, it can be stated that the setting in picture clearly represents the waiting and transportation wastes caused by the processing errors, including the mess with the tools and materials and the lack of space.
A complex 5S project would be helpful for tackling the waiting and transportation wastes by eliminating the existing processing errors. On the stage of sorting, all tools and materials should be divided into necessary and unnecessary for the actual processes. The second step of the sorting stage is removing all unneeded tools and materials for exempting the area. The sorting stage of the project is valuable for reducing the queuing of the operations and allows minimizing the waiting and transportation wastes. As to the waiting waste, after separating all the unnecessary boxes, leftovers and debris from the necessary tools and materials, the workers will not need to rearrange the whole setting every time they need to proceed to the following operation.
Regarding the transportation waste, it can be stated that after exempting the area and the floor space, employees will not need to replace the unnecessary materials and tools from one corner to another all the time. In other words, having enough space, the workers will be able to avoid continuous removing of tools and materials and plenty of unnecessary movements they have to make themselves for bypassing the numerous obstacles for completing their operations.
Regarding the setting in order stage of the 5S project, it presupposes planning the working area so that to allot enough space for everything, taking into consideration the convenience aspect as the rationale for making particular decisions. The second step of this stage is explaining the employees the importance of keeping all the tools and materials in their right places. These measures would allow reducing the waiting and transportation wastes by enhancing the effectiveness of the processes.
As to the waiting waste, after setting in order all the materials, employees will not have to waste their time on reorganization of the working area for every operation. Regarding the transportation waste, it will be reduced because the workers will avoid plenty of unnecessary movements which were previously required for finding the tools and exempting the area.
The shining stage of the project presupposes explaining the employees how important the timely cleaning of the working area is and putting this principle into practice (What is 5S, and why do we want to do it, n.d.). The measures taken at the shining stage would allow eliminating the waiting stage because taking the remains and debris every time they occur instead of collecting them, employees will not need to wait till the working space is prepared for every following operation. Regarding the transportation waste, it will be decreased because not cleaning the working area on time, the workers will have to overstep all the debris, making a lot of unnecessary movements.
In general, it can be concluded that sorting, setting in order and shining stages of the 5S project would allow decrease the wasting and transportation wastes by eliminating the process errors and preventing their occurrence in future.
College of Manufacturing Excellence, n.d. Lean manufacturing: A brief introduction. Web.
Theory of Constraints, n.d. What is 5S, and why do we want to do it? Web.