Action Audit

5S/6S Audit Software

5S/6S audit

6S Audit Diagram

The huge popularity of 5S audits proves how invaluable of a tool it is. It began to be implemented in Japanese companies after World War II as a way to achieve the highest possible efficiency with limited resources. The precursor and the company that contributed to the popularization of 5S was the Toyota concern.

Currently, it is impossible to meet an organization that does not have a 5S audit process implemented or at least does not plan to do so. Why? Well, it is an extremely effective tool for controlling the most important areas of activity not only of production plants, but also of most medium and large-scale organizations.

The 5S program, in accordance with the Lean Management concept, allows you to optimize and improve production work. These are a few simple steps that make workstations (e.g. in the production hall) well organized and safe, which affects the proper functioning of the entire company. Thanks to 5S audits, we can control various areas of activities, as well as strive for their continuous improvement.

6S Audit Diagram

5S/6S audits, as the name suggests, focus on five or six categories. The five basic categories are:

  • Seiri -> Sort

  • Seiton -> Set in order

  • Seiso -> Shine

  • Seiketsu -> Standarize

  • Shitsuke -> Self-discipline

Another control area that is often included in the main categories, but sometimes is a separate category is Safety.

Individual 5S/6S points should be implemented in the order described above and with due accuracy during the audit.

1. Sort / select (Seiri)

Distinguish what is needed and what is not

1. Sort / select (Seiri)

The first stage of 5S consists of sorting/selecting objects at the workplace. Our goal is to get rid of unnecessary items that “clutter” the space around us and to keep the ones that are necessary.

All items can be divided into 3 categories

  • necessary - will be discussed further in the next stage,

  • possibly necessary - we mark them appropriately and store them for a certain period of time (after that time we decide whether they are necessary or not),

  • unnecessary - we throw them out/get rid of them from the workspace.

Getting rid of unnecessary things means that there is more space around and we are surrounded by only the necessary items in the right amount. We keep order in a simple way and do not waste time looking for items, because we have everything “at hand”.

Example checklist questions:

  • Are all materials, tools and devices identified and needed at the workplace?

  • Have useless raw materials, intermediates and/or waste been removed?

  • Have tools, spare parts, materials or equipment been organised?

1. Sort / select (Seiri)

2. Set in order (Seiton)

A place for everything and everything in its place

2. Set in order (Seiton)

The purpose of this stage is arranging and labeling all the necessary things that were left after the selection, in a transparent and understandable way for everyone.

  • Description/marking of places for specific items (e.g. lines, labels, plates),

  • marking with colors/arrows/indicators,

  • shadow boards,

  • indication of minimum and maximum levels (e.g. semi-finished products).

The workstation should be visually described accurately so it is possible to determine the way of work and the status of activities without asking questions, as well as to check the equipment of a given workstation.

Example checklist questions:

  • Is it clear what is the usefulness of all pipes, cables?

  • Are instruments and tools arranged for easy retrieval and return?

  • Are access roads, storage areas, workstations and equipment surroundings clearly marked?

2. Set in order (Seiton)

3. Shine (Seiso)

Cleaning and maintaining cleanliness and good organization of the workplace.

3. Shine (Seiso)

The cleaning rules should be clearly defined at the workplace - frequency, method and standards. Each workplace should have a person assigned to it - a person with a daily duty to clean the desigbnated area.

Thanks to this, the workplace will be “transparent”, and any anomalies (failures, problems, lack of order) will be visible immediately and it will be possible to quickly eliminate them.

This stage consists of two main elements:

  • cleaning - taking care of the cleanliness and proper maintenance of machines, equipment, tools, etc.

  • checking - identifying the causes of dirt and impurities and eliminating them.

Example checklist questions:

  • Are the floors clean and free of waste, water and oil?

  • Are all machine/equipment parts clean?

  • Is there a person responsible for supervising cleaning?

3. Shine (Seiso)

4. Standarize (Seiketsu)

Maintain and monitor the first three steps of 5S

4. Standarize (Seiketsu)

The purpose of Standardization is to define and unify rules/standards that will assist in the application and maintenance of the first three steps. Thanks to this, e.g. each of the employees who changes the position/scope of duties will be able to continue working, after a short training or even without it.

This stage can also be divided into several elements:

  • creating instructions (clear and precise instructions for the earlier stages of 5S),

  • defining the scope of activities and the employees responsible for them,

  • safeguarding new rules from returning to old habits.

Example checklist questions:

  • Are standard procedures described, clear and actively applied?

  • Is the necessary information visible?

  • Can almost all objects be located in 20 seconds?

4. Standarize (Seiketsu)

5. Self-discipline (Shitsuke)

Follow the rules, don't fall back into old habits

5. Self-discipline (Shitsuke)

The last stage of 5S is referred to as the most difficult. The goal is to bring about the moment when the introduced new rules/actions related to 5S become an inseparable part of work culture of each employee. This involves a change in thinking and current habits of each individual, which is why it requires self-discipline.

In addition to employee self-control, 5S audits are an integral part of this stage. They show in which areas there are any irregularities and allow the implementation of a corrective plan. Thanks to audits, management can conduct continuous supervision and support employees in changes related to the implementation of the 5S system.

Example checklist questions:

  • Are daily reports done correctly and on time?

  • Are the procedures up to date and regularly reviewed?

  • Is everyone adequately trained in standard procedures?

5. Self-discipline (Shitsuke)

6. Security as the sixth S

First of all, safety rules

6. Security as the sixth S

The area that is often called 6S is not really the next step of the 5S program. Safety should be a permanent element of each of the stages or, as some believe, the starting point/foundation for starting the 5S program. Therefore, in the graphics of the 6S, safety is placed in the middle, as a common part.

Maintaining safety is based, among other things, on the use of personal protective equipment, training/information and warnings about dangers in the workplace. However, above all, hazards should be identified and, if possible, eliminated.

Example checklist questions:

  • Do you wear appropriate protective clothing while working?

  • Is the fire extinguisher in a visible and accessible place?

  • Are escape routes properly marked?

The 5S program is already a tool known all over the world that improves the functioning of production plants, among others. Carrying out 5S/6S audits is an inseparable action on the way to continuous improvement. The ability to carry them out online and in the mobile application is a time saver and the next step in optimizing production work! This is exactly what the Action Audit tool provides.

6. Security as the sixth S

5S/6S Audits i Action Audit

5S/6S Audits i Action Audit

The Action Audit module available in the Action Plan software will enable your team to reliably perform the audit using checklists prepared on the basis of the best practices.

As in the case of other types of audits, the 5S and 6S also offers advanced configuration options, including:

  • the ability to create your own checklists

  • the ability of building groups of many auditors

  • the ability to schedule audits, also on multiple layers.

When discussing the audit module, one should also mention the extensive reporting functions that speed up the analysis and help identify bottlenecks. In one sentence: "Action Audit is a tool necessary for the work of any quality engineer or continuous improvement specialist".

5S/6S Audits i Action Audit

Key benefits of implementing 5S/6S audits using Action Audit software

Overall improvement of the quality of the auditing process

- transparent scheduling, advanced configuration options, automatic assigning of auditors and addressing of corrective actions, combined with accurate real time reports, result in an overall improvement in the quality, transparency and reliability of the audit process.

Time saving

- the information obtained from the current users of the application shows that they achieve between 60 and 80 percent savings on time they previously spent on servicing the auditing process.

Greater team involvement

- having a tool with which auditors can carry out an audit from a computer, a tablet or a phone, and people responsible for corrective actions have access to comprehensive information about any inconsistencies, the involvement of the entire staff is increased and the effectiveness of interdepartmental cooperation is improved.

Secondary benefits - having a properly planned and rigorously enforced system of 5S/6S auditing, it is impossible not to mention a number of secondary benefits, including: improved product quality, fewer complaints, improved key production indicators and increased customer satisfaction.

How to run Action Audit in 3 steps?

Step 1

Click on the link below and fill out a short form in which we will ask you to present a few basic parameters regarding audits in your company.

Step 2

One of our specialists will contact you to arrange an online meeting to see how Action Audit will work in your organization.

Step 3

Based on the information from the form and the meeting, we will prepare an Action Audit especially for you and make it available for free testing for 30, 45 or even 60 days!