Warehouse Safety Tips | Episode 24 | Outsmarting Issues
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By Matt N and Wes Wyatt
If you or someone you know were in the military, you’ve probably been present to several stories about drill instructors, and the things they did during boot camp. Here is one of those stories:
During boot camp, recruits have to keep their belongings and personal area in an absolutely specific way. If they waiver from this, it’s brought to the attention of everyone. Depending on the drill instructor and several other factors, the person directly responsible will be punished, as well as possibly the entire squad.
While doing an inspection, a drill instructor once found a foot locker with its lock unlocked. He reprimanded the recruit for leaving it unlocked, and then proceeded to tell the entire squad why he was doing so. Stealing from another recruit was absolutely forbidden, but leaving a foot locker unlocked welcomed the opportunity.
Chances are, your facility isn’t run like a platoon in boot camp. And while you might feel as if they’re super tough, it’s also likely your management doesn't behave like drill instructors. The connection between managers and a drill sergeant, however, is that both are supposed to prevent issues and accidents before they’re able to happen.
How To Prevent Accidents Using 5S
How can you prevent issues and accidents before they happen? You can do so by using the 5S methodology, which we covered in a previous episode. Sometimes, we single out a specific “S” in the 5S methodology, but in the case of prevention,all 5 S’s are applicable. We’ve gone over them time and time again, but here is another quick review.
Sort (Seiri): This step is where you sort and categorize items and separate what is needed, allowing only the bare essentials needed for operation and removing everything else. The elimination of excessive items frees up space, saves time, improves process flow, and allows staff to operate efficiently.
Straighten (Seiton): This step is arranging items that are needed so that they are easy to locate, transport, and use.d Identifying locations for all items so that anyone can find them is also important. Once a task is completed, return the items to the specified locations. Issues in the workplace aren’t always associated with accidents. Loss of time compounded by time can cost a facility dearly. Ensuring that staff has everything they need saves time and money.
Shine (Seiso): Clean the workplace and equipment on a regular basis in order to increase safety, maintain standards, and identify defects.
Standardize (Seiketsu): Revisit the first three of the 5S on a regular and frequent basis, and evaluate the condition of the workplace.
Over the years, there has been an additional S added to the mix, which actually makes the 5S Methodology a 6S Methodology. That S is:
Safety: The addition of safety means that you should constantly be looking around your facility to identify issues that can or could possibly affect your staff, production, service, and your overall facility, and work to eliminate those issues.
And what in the past would have been the 5th S,but is now the 6th is:
Sustain (Shitsuke): Maintain the standard and improve every day. This S allows you to strive for continuous improvement!
By implementing these “S’s” every chance you get, you'll increase your chances of stopping issues before they happen!
Check Out Our Other Episodes!
Thank you for listening to Warehouse Safety Tips – and have SAFE day!
Information from Warehouse Safety Tips!
If you’re a seasoned Podcast Listener – this podcast is going to be different from most you listen to. It’s based around exactly what the name implies – Warehouse Safety Tips. And since the people in this industry are busy, we understand that time is money. Because of this, each episode will be as short and to the point as possible. You can find the show notes to each episode, links to information mentioned on the podcast, the social media platforms we’re on, and anything else related to the podcast at WarehouseSafteyTips.com
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