Sustain: The Fifth S in the 5S Process Part Five of 5S Review Series

Sustain –  Maintain on a consistent basis.

5S Steps are:

  1. Sort
  2. Straighten
  3. Sweep
  4. Standardize
  5. Sustain

Some would argue that the 5th and final S in the 5S process is the most difficult. Others claim it naturally happens when the first four are carried out on a consistent basis.

At the end of each day, before leaving your office, take a look around. Any items need to be put away and returned to their “home”? Do files need to be stored in a cabinet or with other project files on your desk? Do you have E-mails in your Inbox that need to be processed, deleted or filed?

Eventually you will naturally Sort, Straighten and Sweep because you begin to see the value in sustaining and maintaining a well-organized, efficient office space. You will realize that a little 5S-ing goes a long way in creating a productive work environment.

Once a person learns decision-making skills, along with the ability to straighten or set things back in order, they will begin to develop a natural tendency to maintain or Sustain an area.

It is recommended that each department develop a 5S Audit worksheet which can be posted for employees to sign off on at the end of each day. This visual indicator helps everyone to do their part in maintaining clutter-free offices.

This article was created by the team at Organized Audrey. This material may be reprinted or reposted, but please credit the author and our website:

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