Using 5S in health care – guest post by Jane Howe

In a recent post “With Lean, how big is too big?” Cameron discusses the problems of a large-scale Lean implementation in health care provision in Saskatchewan. He suggests the issues are about context, preparation, style, scale and sustainability. I think these categories are applicable to most if not all Lean implementations, regardless of size. Take my own…

Learning about 5S

5S is one of the building blocks of Lean. 5S is usually taken to have five stages or pillars – Sort, Set in Order, Shine, Standardise and Sustain. Some workers use slightly different terms, and in health care a sixth ‘S’ – safety is sometimes added. There is a discussion of 5S in a previous…

But it’s already tidy!

There are core building blocks to a Lean approach, including value, waste and value streams. 5S is another core technique. I’ve written about the development of 5S in a previous post. There are variations of the words used, but 5S involves: Sort – separate the necessary from the unnecessary Set in Order – put items in the…

3S? 5s? 7S or more?

5S is often described as a core building block of Lean work. Despite this, it is often taught as a stand alone technique that is related to de-cluttering a ward, office or other workplace. Taught like this, it can produce good results. In my own workplace, it frequently becomes part of a Kaizen, and seems to…