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Warehouse Improvement with Lean 5S-A Case Study of Ulstein Verft AS

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2010, Journal of Business Strategy

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Volume 10, Issue 08 (August 2021)

Study and implementation of ‘5s’ methodology in the furniture industry warehouse for productivity improvement.

thesis on 5s implementation

  • Article Download / Views: 1,534
  • Authors : Dattaji K Shinde , Sagar Wani
  • Paper ID : IJERTV10IS080114
  • Volume & Issue : Volume 10, Issue 08 (August 2021)
  • Published (First Online): 18-08-2021
  • ISSN (Online) : 2278-0181
  • Publisher Name : IJERT

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Study and Implementation of 5S Methodology in the Furniture Industry Warehouse for Productivity Improvement

PG Student Department of Production Engineering Veermata Jijabai Technological Institute

Mumbai, India, -400019

Dattaji K.Shinde

Associate Professor Production Engineering Department Veermata Jijabai Technological Institute

Mumbai, India-400019

Abstract The paper represents an application of 5S technology in one of the large warehouses of Furniture Industry in Maharashtra which is the leading E-commerce Company in terms of Furnishing and Home décor products. In simple terms, the 5S' approach is a Japanese technique that consists of five S' terms: Seiri (sorting), Seiton (order), Seiso (shine), Seiketsu (standardise), and Shitsuke (maintain)having a deep sense for managing the workplace. The goal of implementing 5S in the workplace is to organise a workspace for efficiency and effectiveness by identifying and storing commonly used objects, maintaining the area and products, and keeping the new order. The decision-making process is frequently triggered by a discussion on standardisation, which helps employees understand how they should do their duties. The results show that 5S is an effective tool for improvement of organizational performance, productivity, hygienist.5S technique would strongly support the objectives of organization to achieve continuous improvement in performance and productivity.

Keywords5s,Efficiency, Productivity, Warehouse operation,5s implementation

maintaining visual workplace. 5S is workplace management to minimize the loss of time and unnecessary movements as well. It comprises 5 principles in making the organization highly efficient and effective is shown in Fig.1 and those are: –

Seiri: – (sorting)

It Perform Sorting Activities in workplace i.e. what is required and what is not required.

It Remove the unwanted things that are at your workplace.

Only keep those things that you need on the work floor


In a today's fast business, it is critical to capture customers' hearts through product or service quality. It is also necessary to have productive output that is always improving. The present need of the organization is to deliver high quality Services through continuous improvement. To fulfill these

Seiton: – (set in order)

Fig.1. 5Pillars of 5S

requirement, 5S technique emerged for better production in the industries [2]. 5S is a technique originated from Japan and it was first developed by Hiroyuki Hirano. It consists of five S words: Seiri, Seiton, Seiso, Seiketsu, and Shitsuke, which indicate Sort, Shine, Standardize, and Sustain, respectively. The 5S method comes from the Japanese word "Kaizen," which means "change for the better." It allows the enhancement of efficiency and productivity in the industry. The 5S technique is a program to achieve total organization cleanliness, and standardization in the workplace for better productivity. The benefit of 5S technique is improvement in productivity, quality, health, and safety [2].

5S is the techniques which was introduced by Takashi Osada in the early 1980s [10]. It is basically a workplace management methodology which helps for improving working environment, human capabilities and thereby productivity [11]. The word 5S represents the 5 disciplines for

Decide place for everything that you need

Give proper identification to it for ease of search

Keep everything at its defined place after use

Make sure every time that everything is at its place Seiso: – (shine)

Always keep cleanliness at your workplace.

Keep the tools always clean after its use.

Areas should be properly marked or painted.

Seiketsu: – (standardize)

Define standard method/way of doing the work i.e. prepare standard operating procedure (SOP).

Do the work in that method/way only.

Maintain the discipline in your work [13].

Shitsuke: – (sustain)

Maintain consistency in the method of doing work [12].

Stick to the 5S rules for proper workplace management.

Encourage the participation of all, for consistency in 5S activities.

Perform 5S activities periodically

Organization Introduction

Organization is a leading online home and lifestyle service provider company, offering a wide range of furniture and home decor products. It is a e-commerce business which has created a platform for hundreds of furniture vendor to sell their products through website. They manage home brand & market-place orders through their platform. Marketplace is for directly shipping orders from vendors to customers without storing the inventory in the warehouse. But all the orders are processed through warehouse only.

Organization offers large variety in furniture products having around 4000 types of unique products in both furniture and non-furniture (Décor & utility) sector. In 2016, they shifted to the new warehouse spread over 2,85,000 sq. ft. area at Bhiwandi near Mumbai, with a capacity to fit about 3 airbuses inside the warehouse. and having racked up to 10 meters of height, making them largest warehouse for a furniture business in the country. The warehouse is responsible to process all the orders in the west region and even many products are shipped all over India as per requirement. The warehouse ships the order to respective distribution centre and thereafter the product is delivered to end customer. Bhiwandi warehouse mainly stores the Mudra- Solidwood Inventory (from Local and Jodhpur Vendors). (Source: Internet)

Departmental Overview

Inward Unloading and GRN of material from fleet vehicles

Put-Away Mapping of unloaded material in the rack locations; mapped inventory is made live on website

Quality Check: Quality check of inventory.

Order Processing To pick and ship the orders confirmed on website

Inventory To ensure the proper mapping and availability of inventory

Décor and Utility Non furniture segment

Warehouse Operation

Warehouse operation or warehousing is one of the most significant components in supply chain. It is the core operation of logistics regarding to distribution activities as storage and transportation. Managing product to be successfully at the right time, right place and right quantity, without damages and differentiations is a mission of warehouse management. This chapter explains the typical warehouse processes and the integration of warehouse processes and reverse logistics optimization

Typical warehouse processes for distribution chain

Basic processes of warehouse in Fig.2 are receiving, put- away, internal replenishment, order picking, accumulating, and sorting, packing, cross docking, dispatch and shipping. The processes in warehouse as mentioned by Bartholdi & Hackman are divided into two groups; receiving, put- away, and storage are considered inbound and order-picking, packing, and shipping are considered outbound processes. The details are explained as follows:

Fig.2. Simple flow of warehouse Operation


Most of the organization workplaces face the problems of disorder, wastage of time and cost due to non-value-added activities. These problems affet the work environment adversely and accumulate to bigger problems such as long lead times, higher defects, low productivity, frequent breakdowns of machines and hidden safety hazards, thereby critically affecting the cost competitiveness of the organizations. These problems can easily control and reduced by holistic 5S implementation at workplace (Chapman, 2005; Chuanjie, 2013). This technique is very useful and beneficial in Industrial organization. We also concluded that by implementing 5S we could improve the quality, productivity, and efficiency of industrial organization, it also has positive effect on overall performance (Abhay R. Kobarne, Vineet K. Gaikwad, Sourabh S. Dhaygude, Nikhil A. Bhalerao 2016).5s is a holistic application used to raise moral, ethical standards and strongly associated with Japanese culture and society. 5S not only improves organisational working environment but also improves the overall industrial management process performance as well (Ho, 1999b). Ho (1997) has reviewed the reasons of having 5S technique in Japanese industries. He concluded that 5S practice was essential because it help to make the life of everyone good in organisation. It was implemented successfully with help of top management commitment, promotional campaign, training of 5S, evaluation of the results and keeping of records. It is also analysed that the practice of 5S become the supporting activity or in some cases as a base foundation for the implementation of other lean tools such as TPM, TQM, JIT, TPS and ISO

standards (Teeravaraprug et al., 2011; Chen and Tan,2013; Kushwaha, 2015).ABK-AOTS Dosokai (2001) has reported that the Indian industries have gained lot of benefits such as reduction of customer complaints and worker absenteeism, improved resources utilization and worker morale through 5S initiatives at workplace. Kaushik Kumar, Sanjeev kumar gives the steps undertaken for the implementation of the 5S emphasizing on the benefits to the organization. He describes the detailed steps involved in the implementation from inception to execution have been discussed (2012). The last bottleneck activity which was related to the development of Steelyard for systematic storage of steel inventory was successfully executed using a simple Load-Distance- Technique which is a handy technique of Facility Planning used to minimize material handling and travel time thereby improving your efficiency of operations [18]. The real secrete about inventory accuracy is that it is continuous improvement process. By improving inventory accuracy, the warehouse parameter like inventory turnover, inventory days, inventory value, idle time of workers etc. can be improve [19]. Using SCOR model and various techniques such as kaizen, 5S, lean manufacturing etc. we can improve the logistics system of any manufacturing system and also have a better result in customers satisfaction which leads better compete. Theoretical as well as practical exposure of the problems and how such problems are solved using various techniques [20]..


In that leading company, there was a improper utilization of floor space for raw material, finished products and material handling equipment and machines used for repairing purposes which impact on the space management and floor utilization. Wastage of time for finding of material due to non- permanent location as per destination. Low productivity due to the time wastage in searching for materials due to improper workplace management. Presence of unwanted materials at the workplace which affects the moral of the worker while working, also due to such unwanted material there is a mess with needed items and required time for finding and utilization. There was no well-defined space for storing the unwanted or rejected material. More time and cost required for the inventory process of unwanted stored materials in raw material stores. There was a lack of visual communication for the worker to be understand better. No guidelines for each department were present on the work floor, so as there was no defined process flow as per guidelines. Timeline for each process i.e., TAT for each process not defined, Color code implementation is necessary. Will need to implement PDCA process flow for day-to-day work.


The basic Methodology to improve the operations following steps should be implemented:

Implement 5 Pillars of 5S.

Floor Management

Visual Sign boards for better understanding.

Implement colour coding system

5s audit scoreboard

Safety Tools :6th S

Initiation for 5S Implementation

The 5S strategy described in this paper is a straightforward and methodical methodology that can be introduced and implemented in any size or type of business. Each phase must be properly evaluated and addressed utilizing the P- D- C-A Cycle technique before beginning the Step-by-Step Implementation of 5S is shown the for of

roadmap in Fig.3.

Step by step Implementation of 5S

Formation of 5S council

The 5S council was founded with the goal of increasing overall participation at all levels of the organization and developing a culture of continuous improvement and high performance in the teams. Fig.4 shows a typical implementation process organizational structure.

Fig. 4. The structure of Steering Committee for 5S implementation

Set up 5S zone

The 5S Coordinator will be in charge of establishing the zones. Assigning responsibilities will be the responsibility of the 5S Facilitators. They'd break down the tasks into small chunks. Obtaining the layout of the complete work area and separating each component into small zones is one way to accomplish this. After that, one team is assigned to each segment, and the names of team members and their areas are displayed. They must verify that each area has at least one person assigned to it and that each team has a leader.

Furthermore, it is necessary to ensure that the section size and team strength are as uniform as feasible.

5S Training

The 5S training committee was formed with the goal of disseminating 5S methodology and preparing the workforce to participate meaningfully in 5S activities. Workers are encouraged to participate actively in the application exercises in this training programme, which is the beginning point for 5S. After completing the preliminary training, everyone will have the necessary basic knowledge and will be responsible for ongoing actions. During the 5S declaration, plans defining the implementation of the 5S phases must be produced and released. The most common mistake businesses make when implementing the 5S system is failing to appropriately train employees from the start. Training should include 5S Awareness (for Top Management), 5S Awareness (for Operators), 5S Implementation (for Facilitators), Internal 5S Audit (For all) is shown the Fig.5 below.

Fig.5. 5s Foundation

Set Red-Tag Criteria

Not Needed at all.

Needed but not now.

Needed but not here

Needed but not so much Quantity

B. Colour code System

Color code System sown in Fig. 7 is implemented for below reasons are some works like Put away and Mapping should be done on same day so that Product with that day Sticker should be proceed on same day. QC repairing Works should not take more than 1 week for process so that the sticker with color should proceed within next week same day are shown in Fig.8

Fig.7. Colour Code System

A. Red Tag Area

Create a Red Tag Area are shown in Fig. 6 so that whatever unwanted Material should be kept at this area and working area should be free of unwanted clutter.

Fig.6. Red Tag

Fig.8. Colour code implementation

Visual Communication

In visual cmmunication shown in the Fig. 9, it gives straight forward instruction to everyone working on work floor department wise Quality check department QC checker got clear instruction how to do QC same is for inward and Outward department.

Visual guidelines such as process guidelines and material handling guidelines give workers a brief information on how to process SKU and how to handle the material while loading, unloading and QC and the dashboards and PDCA chart were prepared as shown in Fig.10..

Fig.9. Visual Guidelines for 5S

PDCA Chart and Dashboard for daily process tracking

Fig. 10. Dashboards and PDCA chart

In PDCA cycle process,1. Plan 2.DO 3. Check 4. Act ,this 4 terminologies are used .In this implementation we have implemented this for the 3 processes Inward, Quality check and Inventory and other .Plan should be decide on every morning and as per plan DCA will be implemented

5S audit is the process of evaluating the proper implementation of 5S in the workplace with team were made are shown in Fig. 11. Conducting 5S audits help ensure that the workplace is consistently following the 5S principles: Seiri (Sort), Seiton (Systematize), Seiso (Shining), Seiketsu (Standardizing), and Shitsuke (Sustaining).

Fig.11. 5s Audit


By implementing 5S, following objectives are achieved: –

Hygiene Maintaining on Work floor /proper Floor Utilization.

Implementing color code system on permanent basis.

Increase in Productivity.

Same day put away and Location mapping

QC Productivity

Refurbish Productivity Increase

Arrange Warehouse floor as per types of products on which actual process to be done lane wise are shown in the Fig. 12. Sort various SKUs on which similar work is required for repairing purpose. Sort SKUs as per color code, so that delay can be prevented. Start Same department for same work on floor so that there is no time delay due to hurry. Start daily Tracking on each department by sticking dashboards of each department and observe hourly.

Fig. 12. Floor Arrangement

Same day putaway and location Mapping

As there were no Segregation method for Location wise and Hub wise, there is difficult to put away the SKU which are of same day or 2-3 days delayed SKUs. We have implemented Color code system as well to determine the same day product, so that Put away should be done on same day. It gave as good results as shown and increase the put away Productivity for Inward SKUs.

As per below table shown, it is a data of Count of SKUs

i.e. no of products to be In warded and Putaway done on what date is shown in the Table 1. It shows the delay for the putaway and mapping of SKUs months wise and is used for the analysis and is shown in the Fig.13.

Table 1 Putaway Data

Fig. 14. Putaway chart

As per above Bar chart, it is clear that the Putaway and Mapping of the SKUs for the months of Jan, Feb, March April and onward after the implementation of 5s pillars and colour code system and PDCA chart is shown in the Fig.14, there is a large qty of SKUs whose putaway and Mapping done on the same day compare to earlier months

Fig. 15. Putaway Graph

Fig.16. Putaway data pie chart

As we can see from above results, the same day and 1 day delay putaway percentage on the months after the 5s Implementing are more with respect to previous months .it is due to proper floor management and maintaining 5s pillars along with proper colour code system for each and every SKU inward in the warehouse is shown in the pie chart I Fig. 16.

Per day QC increase

There Is a Quality Check process is for Each and Every SKU which is Inward in a Warehouse, and then as per Action plan we have Segregate them after QC done. So, it is important to conduct Maximum QC on available time to finish daily QC and there is no lag behind. We need some strategy to increase the productivity, so that we Implement dashboards tracking system, PDCA continuous Increment Charts, Targeted Area and focus Area Boards. Plan and implement those daily plans were help us on increasing the QC Qty per day. Also, we implement Same color Code system which ever SKUs inward on day must be proceed within 1-2 days so that target is achieved is shown the Fig. 17

Fig.17. Per day QC Graph

In above line chart ,we can see that that huge increase in the total no of QC done in the months of Jan, Feb ,March and onwards .as in October no are 642, which are increasing to 1366 in Jan,1817 in feb, and 2195 in March

.as per implementing of 5S ,PDCA chart dashboard, and colour code system and proper visual communication and training, Increase in the QC are seen in the chart .

Analysis in below Pie chart, it is seen that the percentage of QC done in previous months i.e. before implementing all tools, the percentages of 7.3% in the month of Nov is going to increase 17.3 ,23 and 27 respectively in the month of Jan, Feb, March respectively is shown in the Fig 18.

Fig.18. QC data pie chart

Repairing of Rejected SKUs /Refurbish SKUs

We have separate Department called Carpentry Area Where Repairing work is done on Damage/dent, or incomplete

SKUs. Repaired Products are help as a Refund Saviour for a company. We apply 5S in sort /set order, increase the Section from 2 to 4 so that productivity in increase. Daily Target Assign and tracking with Dashboards so the results got in favor as per Table 3.

Table 3 Daily Target Assign and tracking with Dashboards

As seen in above table, it shows total no of SKUs got repaired in the months of 2020 and 2021 .as seen total no of SKUs got repaired in Oct -228, Nov-218, Dec-235 And after 5s, in Jan270, feb-330, March-399 SKUs had been repaired. As we see in below Fig. 19, the no of SKUs repaired in the month of Jan, Feb, and March are 270, 330, and 399 respectively which much higher than the previous year months. The count of SKU is higher after the implementation of 5S, colour code, dashboard system which helps in the improvement in productivity.

Fig. 19. Repaired SKUs graph

5S initiatives offer significant benefits to manufacturing and service organizations to attain drastic improvements at workplace, thereby motivating the organizations to learn more knowledge about 5S technique for its effective implementation in their organizations. The conclusion from the above 5s Implementation, color code system, PDCA Chart, Dashboard Implementation, floor management in the Warehouse are as: Implementation of Sort and Set in order gives appropriate place for everything, it results in proper utilization of floor for raw materials, finish products and transport equipments also less time required for finding of material due to permanent location as per destination and proper mapping and sorting. Productivity increases due to the time management with the help of dashboards & PDCA CHARTS along with workplace management. Prohibit of unwanted materials at the workplace which affects the

moral of the worker while working. Defined space (Red tag Area) for storing the unwanted or rejected material. Visual communication with the help of charts and guidelines are given on the work floor. Time bound is decided for each and every process for every SKU as there is color code System Implemented. audit is conducted on department basis for improvement. PDCA process is follow for important departments. Time span between Inward and Mapping is coming to same day instead of 2-3 days delay. QC for SKUs increased due to sorting, color code and dashboard process. Repairable SKUs productivity was increased.


Author acknowledges the facilities provided by Production Department VJTI, Mumbai and furniture industry for conducting this research and design analysis

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  5. PDF 5S implementation in Wan Cheng Industry Manufacturing Factory in Taiwan

    5S implementation in Wan Cheng Industry Manufacturing Factory in Taiwan by HungLin, Chi A Research Paper Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Master of Science Degree III Technology Management The Graduate School University of Wisconsin-Stout May, 2011 1 . Author:

  6. PDF Factors that influence the implementation of the lean 5S tool ...

    "The 5S pillars are sorted, set in order, shine, standardize, and sustain" (Moriones, 2010, p. 217). The 5S tool is the fundamental prerequisite for the implementation of the lean methodologies and is a primary tool for continuous improvement (Imai, 1997). Moriones et al. (2010, p. 218) wrote that "5S is one of the best known and most

  7. PDF The implementation of the 5s lean tool: A CASE STUDY OF A GREEK WAREHOUSE

    selected warehouse. This dissertation is based on the 5s lean tool and also aims to develop solutions in order the warehouse to work in a more efficient way. Methodology: For this thesis, the observation method has been chosen as the most suitable way of gathering the necessary data. For 50 days, I had an active appearance in the warehouse


    ABSTRACT Valkeakoski Degree Programme in Industrial Management Author Veli-Pekka Pirttijoki Year 2013 Subject of Bachelor's thesis Introduction and implementation of the 5S- operation model for ST-Koneistus Ltd ABSTRACT 5S-operation model is one tool of the Lean-philosophy.

  9. PDF Implementation of 5S management method for lean healthcare at a health

    Pilot 5S intervention The implementation of the 5S management method pilot intervention (hereinafter referred to as the 5S program) was conducted under the JICA-assisted project, PARSS, and involved three phases: 1) training and planning for the application of the 5S management method, 2) 5S practices at each unit, and 3) progress monitoring ...

  10. PDF Developing the 5S Implementation Guideline for a Food ...

    Developing the 5S Implementation Guideline for a Food Production Company Helsinki Metropolia University of Applied Sciences Master's Degree Industrial Management Master's Thesis 14 May 2017 Preface Wow, the word "preface" does look nice. This thesis has been a long road of personal and professional development, started in autumn of 2014.

  11. Louisiana State University LSU Scholarly Repository

    This Thesis is brought to you for free and open access by the Graduate School at LSU Scholarly Repository. It has ... was measured, did not participate in the actual 5S implementation; however, their workplace was modified due to 5S. The productivity metrics used to measure the effectiveness of the 5S event were cycle time, the available floor ...

  12. PDF Implementing the 5S Methodology for Lab Management

    5S consists of five phases or activities with names starting with the letter S, and provides a basic foundation for any organization's Lean initiative for continuous improvement. This paper documents a project undertaken by the author to implement 5S in the quality assurance lab of a flexible packaging converter. The study focused on ...

  13. (PDF) Review of 5S methodology and its contributions towards

    The paper presents an overview of 5S implementation practices adopted by the manufacturing organisations and also highlights the contributions of 5S initiatives towards improving...


    The purpose of this thesis is to implement 5S management in a battery company to gradually obtain the 5S results, which will gradually promote Beyond to have a 5S structure that can be applied on-site and in later mass production. During this research, it will preliminarily establish a model based on 5S as a foundation for

  15. Old Dominion University ODU Digital Commons

    the implementation of 5S were found both in quality and product cost for this facility; however, the study also found statistical significance where the implementation of 5S led to a decrease in performance and an increase in maintenance costs. Additionally, the study identified non-statistically significant relationships between 5S ...

  16. PDF 5S methodology implementation in the laboratories of an Industrial

    5S in the UK and US is viewed as a system or tool for the workplace only. In some countries, the implementation of 5S methodology is a simple way to comply with the minimum requirements for health and safety in the workplace. This relationship has led to the possibility of extending the scope of the 5S through the incor-

  17. [PDF] Evaluating the Effectiveness of 5S Implementation in the

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of 5S practices implementation in COLDAIR Engineering Company for manufacturing and assembling. The effectiveness of 5S implementation was major concern for organization in industrial sector in the last decade because many 5S project failed to achieve the expected results by optimizing the workplace environments. the researchers used a ...

  18. PDF Theory of Constraints and Resistance as part of 5S standard ...

    The purpose of the thesis is to build a 5S factory standard for case company's manufac-turing unit. During the thesis, a theoretical approach for the standard's implementation is being studied. This will be conducted from a case study and semi-structured research interviews.

  19. PDF Implementation of 5S in Scientific Equipment Company

    5S implementation go through the process of self-assessment. The activities performed for the implementation are checked if they are effectively implemented or not. Internal audits are held in this phase for this assessment and measures are taken to make improvements if required (Jagusiak-Kocik, 2017, (Dudin, Frolova, Gryzunova & ...

  20. Warehouse Improvement with Lean 5S-A Case Study of Ulstein Verft AS

    Implementation of Lean 5S in the warehouse of Ulstein Verft At the time of writing of the thesis the implementation of Lean 5S in the warehouse department was still in process with a deadline for completition 01.01.2011, however, the deadlines tend to fluctuate. Since the project is still ongoing, the case study could not include a thorough ...

  21. A Study of Implementation of 5S for the Betterment in Workflow

    Surroundings also be a factor that causes and effect the whole productivity and quality of the work. 5S is the technic of lean management that deals with working surroundings i.e. Sorting, Shining, Set in order, Standardization, and Sustain everything conclude to the end with betterment in the work flow. 5S is a quality technic that helps in red...

  22. Study and Implementation of '5S' Methodology in the ...

    Fig. 14. Putaway chart. As per above Bar chart, it is clear that the Putaway and Mapping of the SKUs for the months of Jan, Feb, March April and onward after the implementation of 5s pillars and colour code system and PDCA chart is shown in the Fig.14, there is a large qty of SKUs whose putaway and Mapping done on the same day compare to earlier months

  23. Implementation of 5S Methodology : Case Transval Group

    The thesis mostly focuses on the first two sub-projects. The overall success of the first two sub-projects were measured with a survey, held before and after the implementation of 5S. The researcher asked eight employees from different positions to answer the survey once before the implementation and once after.