Should I go with 5S or 6S?

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    • #114
      Mike Wilson

      A hotly debated topic within the Lean manufacturing world is whether a company should implement 5S or 6S. The 6S framework includes the same five steps as 5S: Sort, Set in Order, Shine, Standardize, and Sustain, but includes a sixth step: safety. Proponents of this added step argue the added step will reduce downtime, reduce expenses, improve worker confidence, meet OSHA requirements, and help to identify possible safety issues. All of these points align with the 5S philosophy, but how necessary is it?

      Should 6S be considered its own methodology when safety is often interwoven within 5S? While it can be argued that safety is an ongoing process supported by nearly all pillars of the 5S system, it can be important for companies to place extra emphasis on safety by adding it as the sixth S.

      What do you think about the controversial sixth S? Do you think it should be an added step into the existing 5S system or that 5S already indirectly covers safety? Let us know in the discussion.

    • #138

      When implementing 5S within your workplace, safety should always be a focus. 5S provides better housekeeping which should decrease the amounts of slip, trips, and falls. However, adding the 6th “S” will provide a much thorough safety approach to 5S. Therefore, I think 6S should always be used when implementing this lean technique.

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