Method 5S: Approach for an Organized Environment

Discover the 5S method, an approach that will resolve all your organizational issues within your departments, offices and workshops. 


Work more efficiently with the 5S method

Do your employees spend 5 minutes or more trying to find documents at their desk or tool in their workspace? Do you experience a similar crowded and overloaded environment which suppresses work motivation and the achievement of objectives?

Opt for the 5S method, which will solve all these organizational difficulties within your services, offices and workshops.


Definition of the management technique : The 5S


The 5S method is a practice to optimise the working conditions and working time environment, making sure that this environment remains tidy, clean and safe while instilling rigorousness.

The 5S is a system of work that is quick and easy to put in place. This Japanese method consists of 5 steps. Several meanings may be associated, depending on your activity, because the 5S method has been designed for workshops, factories and also the services and offices, or even at home!

The 5S of the 5S method

1st S : SEIRI

SORT - ELIMINATE. Elimination is the first priority in 5S: Start by getting rid of everything that is not absolutely necessary. It’s important to keep what’s important, but it’s just as important to get rid of what isn’t. And what matters above all is knowing what to keep or not.

2nd S : SEITON

SHINE - TIDY UP. Tidying up means putting things in specific places so they can be found straight away when needed, thus avoiding wasted time searching.

3rd S : SEISO

SHINE - CLEAN. Cleaning of offices, workplaces, and production tools is not just cleaning for the sake of cleanliness. In some cases; such as machines and tools, it's a first step towards preventive maintenance. It's often during cleaning that anomalies and premature wear are detected.


STANDARDISE, It is at this stage that rules are defined; by which the workplace will remain free of unnecessary objects, tidy and cleaned. To eliminate the risk of disorder, Takashi Osada advocates Visual Management that relies on a number of aids.

The 5 steps of the 5S method

SUSTAIN - GET INVOLVE, The rules that have been established must be obeyed, and therefore staff must be encouraged to stick to them. It’s a simple case of routinely doing what needs to be done, so that 5S does indeed become a matter of routine.

Method created by the TPS, Toyota Production System

SESA SYETEMS cleaning station for example of the 5S method created by Toyota

The 5S method has been developed by the Toyota group in the TPS, Toyota Production System context. It is a company management tool aming at:
  Avoiding a maximum of wasted time and energy
  Checking the quality of products on the production chain
  Producing according to the Kanban method in order to avoid overproduction or the opposite
  Listening to its operators to facilitate communication.

Inspired of Fordism, the Toyotism proved to be effective and has been studied in depth in order to create the 5S. This technique remodeled has proven its worth through time.

Personage SESA SYETEMS for example of the method 5S create by Toyota


Purpose of the technique of management : The 5S


Progress is possible when everybody makes a commitment.
This joint commitment starts by taking into account each person’s work environment (machine, line, laboratory, office, store, etc.).

More than just a simple technique for keeping order, 5S is first and foremost a participative management method that gets employees involved in improving the organization of a workplace. This action calls for participation at every level in the hierarchy.

Personage SESA SYETEMS application method 5s
Personages SESA SYETEMS visual management application method 5s

All five parts of 5S are vital when embarking on a continual improvement initiative. They help share the necessary mindset for continual improvement.

The 5S method is based on the observation that a clean and tidy workspace is conducive to good production quality..

Benefits of the 5S method in terms of direct results

Cleanness and tidiness at the workstations and their surroundings

Implementation of visual organization

Elimination of wasted time and materials

Improved equipment management

Improved workflow

Decreased risk of work accidents

Better working conditions

General improvement in the environment

Better site image for visitors

Benefits of the 5S method in terms of behaviour

Communicating and leading a team based on well-defined topics: The 5S

Establishing standards

Capitalizing knowledge and know-how as assets

Improved workflow

Honouring commitments and collective rules

Re-examining habits

Coming forth with initiatives and creative solutions

Delegating certain activities to internal stakeholders

Make acquired results longlasting and ensure ongoing progress

Examples of the usefulness of the 5S

Before the method 5S workstation SESA SYETEMS
After the method 5S workstation SESA SYETEMS

Functional workstation integrating the ergonomics and concept of the 5s

The method of the 5S values the image of your workstations, workbench, islets, sectors, production workshops and offers:

  A new aesthetic with its flexible structure in aluminum

  An increase in the productivity and efficiency

  A decrease in accidents and outages or technical malfunctions

Offices dedicated to simplifying the administrative organization integrating ergonomics and the concept of the 5s

This management technique offers a complete solution within the company, services, offices such as:

  A better organization and incresed quality of work

  Effective visual presentation

  Decreases the time in locating a document, or reduces problems if the operator is not present

Before the method 5S lean office SESA SYETEMS
Apres the method 5S lean office SESA SYETEMS

Before the method 5S visual management SESA SYETEMS
After the method 5S visual management SESA SYETEMS

The signage following the 5S

This approach to a clean, organized and functional environment proposes to use signage in order to allow:

  Ergonomic operation of clean tools

  A pre-defined way for cleaning

  The organization of the work elements



The 5S approach is participative. In a production environment, operators are asked to reappraise their work in terms of efficiency, and in light of their experience, everyday constraints, and any ideas for improvement that they might put forward and implement.

This roll-out method is especially motivating, with participants getting immersed and involved.

Implementing 5S is also an opportunity to enrich operators’ jobs, notably by delegating to them the routine servicing of machines and equipment.

Training by maintenance experts may be necessary, and together the parties can draw up the required operating procedures.

For many operators, this experience is enriching and very positive. It elevates their job to more than fetching, carrying, and twiddling knobs and gives them day-to-day involvement.



E-learning playful Game for professionals


Learning by playing games is an enjoyable way of learning in a group. It helps elevate everyone’s work experience by providing rich, original and rewarding learning situations.

The personal experience gained by participants will raise their awareness of the need to put the common sense approach it promotes into practice, enabling them to better understand its application to their everyday work.

Average duration: 2h to 3h
Participants discover the interest and the principle of the 5S by the construction of situations by images corresponding to the five steps of 5S on a game board.

5S training game for a clean and functional environment

Peolple involved:
The ideal workforce is 10 people: operators, technicians, team leaders, heads of workshop, executives, etc…

Wait no longer to train your employees in 5S through the game

To go further

Construction Site Start-up Kit: Complementary to the 5s training, it incorporates all the necessary tools for the direct application and concrete action for the 5S pilot project : 5S, HOSHIN, KAIZEN, SMED, LEAN

Results: collective, shared and effective success.

Starter kit method, all the tools for the success of your projects


The SESA SYETEMS creations for the 5S method