Original Date: 10/10/2005
Revision Date: / /
Best Practice : Visual Workplace Organization
The Visual Workplace Organization is a method for organizing a work center, analyzing the workplace, planning a facility-wide improvement, and sustaining the efforts. The 30-point scoring increase from baseline 58 points to 88 points on the Visual Workplace Matrix Scorecard reflects Raytheon’s Integrated Air Defense Center facility has demonstrated and successfully executed Visual Workplace to achieve significant workflow process throughout the facility.
The Visual Workplace Organization (VWPO) Program demonstrates how to organize a Performance Improvement Steering Team, how to analyze the workplace, how to plan a facility-wide improvement program, and most important – how to sustain these efforts. The concept of changing the workplace was developed by Hiroyuki Hirano and comes from the Japanese concept of 5s – the five pillars of the visual workplace. Hirano’s concept of 5s organization describes the five steps of workplace organization as seri - organization, seiton – orderliness, seiso – cleanliness, seiketsu – standardized clean up, and shitsuke – discipline. These five steps are also known as sort, shine, set in place, standardize, and sustain.
Raytheon’s Andover Integrated Air Defense Center (IADC) has made great progress in its VWPO efforts. Prior to implementing VWPO, the baseline matrix consisted of no sustainability, responsibility was not standard throughout the facility, and there was a general lack of understanding of value effort. The measurement matrix is based on rating the 5s. Andover’s initial baseline visual workplace matrix was at 30 on a rating scale where 20% = poor and 100%= outstanding.
In the intial stages of implementing VWPO, participants conduct a value stream analysis that is followed by efforts to organize the workplace for maximum effectiveness of the people and equipment in the facility. The organizational matrix of 5s describes what must be done at each process level: Sort – removing all items from the workplace that are not needed for current production operations, eliminating clutter that can impede production.
Set In Order – finding the best way to store items so they are easily accessible
Shine – sweeping floors, wiping off equipment, and making sure that everything in the workplace stays clean. This step emphasizes the removal of dirt, grime, debris, and dust from the workplace
Standardize – this step differs from Sort, Set In Order, and Shine (sometimes known as 3s), all of which are activities. In contrast, Standardize is the result of continuous maintenance of the first three activities and focuses on finding ways to make the 3s activities a habit
Sustain holds Sort, Set In Order, Shine and Standardize together over time. Sustain emphasizes the positive reinforcement of employee efforts to maintain a clean and organized workplace.
The IADC facility currently conducts business more efficiently than before the baseline data was collected in early 2005. The 5s process is well executed throughout the production floor. Benchmarking efforts have resulted in the creation of a new 6s checklist in which the additional “s” signifies the company’s high level of commitment to safety. A weekly scoring sheet is kept for each area in the IADC facility, and employees also use a Manufacturing Excellence Measurement (MEM) scoring system. A standard IADC improvement plan template has been created that has exhibited a VWPO matrix score increase of 30 points in a 10-month period of time at the IADC facility.
The implementation of VWPO has significantly reduced cycle time at the IADC facility, where the 5s organization process has reduced and eliminated waste and increased quality. The addition of a sixth step demonstrates Andover’s commitment to progress and quality through lean initiatives.
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