Like all Lean manufacturing methods, 5S is a built for long-term improvement, not quick fixes. Production processes need to be changed from the ground up, and that’s where 5S red tags come in. These tags are necessary for the Sort phase in 5S, because this tagging systems allows workers to assess how valuable a tagged item is to their job.
The sort phase is where workers must make decisions that will lead to a clutter-free work space, and the visual cues of the 5S red tags are a vital part of the process. Workers can attach the tags to tools whose value is hard to assess. 5S tags show workers how often a tool is used, and consequently is a deciding factor as to whether or not it should stay in the work area or be moved to a secondary storage area like a tool crib.
Remember: 5S will improve your facility’s production processes infinitely, but only if all of the steps are taken.