By George E. Krauter
“5 S” (sort, set in order, shine, standardize and sustain) is a system of organization that increases the likelihood that production will occur exactly as planned. 5 S approaches are designed to keep the workplace safe and productive; the concept contends that when the workplace is clean, organized, and safe, it is easier for workers to perform their jobs without wasting time or risking injury. This five-step process improves the overall efficiency of a plant. Should it also be applied to MRO reliability?
From an MRO perspective the following series of questions that account for each of the five stages of the 5 S process should be posed:
#2. SET IN ORDER:
This aspect of the process is best illustrated with a real-life example:
A procurement manager, who was responsible for the company’s capital expenditures, was also assigned the responsibility of MRO purchasing and control. She came to realize that MRO was a small percentage of her total responsibility while requiring over 80% of her time.
With the help of a major supplier, she initiated the 5 S concepts successfully, reaped the benefits, and established a procedure to keep the processes in place, i.e. sustain. There was now time to reduce costs in the capital spend area… at which she excelled.
The company rewarded her success with a substantial increase in compensation and a promotion into senior management.
A newly hired manager was assigned to MRO who felt he had to put his “mark” on MRO. He sent an RFQ to multiple suppliers and chose the low-priced suppliers per category; his goal was to be able to show that he reduced MRO pricing. He did not recognize the other financial and non-financial values the previous manager had created as a result of the deployment of a 5 S approach.
Sort, Set in Order, Shine, Standardize, as well as Sustain were ignored, and the storeroom retreated to its previous unreliable and costly state. MRO came full circle the wrong way.
Perform a self-assessment
If you answered “No” to most of the questions above, consider changing your current approach. You have an opportunity to save your company substantial dollars and to reap the following “5S” related benefits:
The implementation of a 5 S concept requires dedication and supplier cooperation. However, if steps are not taken to recognize the benefits (such as sign off by senior management), the effort will not be sustained and efforts at MRO efficiency improvement will ultimately fail.
George Krauter, former founder and president of Industrial Systems Assoc. [I.S.A.] has retired as vice president of Synovos.
Currently, he has initiated, "George Krauter Consulting [GKC]" for effective reliability and cost recovery for consumers of MRO materials. George is a recognized authority on the management of the MRO supply chain and support for maintenance reliability programs. His book, "OUTSOURCING MRO...FINDING A BETTER WAY" is available from Amazon and from Reliability Web.com.
He is published in Uptime, Modern Distribution Management, and Supply and Demand Chain Executive. George has conducted seminars across North America, in Europe, and in the U.A.R. as well as a guest speaker at Temple U., Howard U., Duke, and MIT.
George is a graduate of Temple University; he lives with his wife, Joyce, in Bucks County, PA. All grand kids live within eating distance. He can be reached anytime: email@example.com.
George E. Krauter
When one defines third-party MRO (3PMRO) success, one assumes that fundamental operations are being executed and that expectations are being met (i.e., ROI goals are surpassed} Read More
The US Labor Department reported in March of this year that there were 6.6 million job openings, a record high. Although most of us applaud these numbers Read More
Millennials working in the supply chain management field don’t fit the mold that the older generation assumes for them. APQC’s recent study Read More
Staples Advantage is the one supplier that offers all the business solutions you need, all with the expertise of a specialty vendor. Read More
It started in 1972 with an idea, a new concept in distribution. Today, Digi-Key Corporation is one of the fastest-growing electronic component distributors in the World. The stimulus for this growth is Digi-Key's customer-centered business philosophy… Read More
Procurement and supply management leaders have a seat at the table, and management’s expectations are high. But what do CEOs really want, and is purchasing delivering on these expectations? This webcast looks at how procurement and supply management … Read More
At world-class companies, purchasing’s influence touches just about every area of spending. But, how exactly do procurement teams get to the point where other departments approach them for help with sourcing such indirect categories as human resource… Read More