Sustain - the Fifth "S" of the 5 S System

After the first four S’s from the Toyota Production Systems improvement process have been implemented, the most important work begins.  If you have gone to all the work of setting up the system you must sustain or even improve on it to keep the system working properly.  Things change and you need to be flexible.  If something is not working the way you would like change it and keep changing it until you are satisfied.

For instance, you should be able to tell at a glance if all the tools are in they place or if your hardware is running low, you may have to walk around and check some key spots each night to make sure the system is being used properly.

We are all very quick to form habits and by repeating these steps over and over it will be no time at all and your employees will be telling you when parts are low or things are not where they belong.

The 5 S System may seem like a lot of work at first and it is, but the benefits far out weigh your initial investment.