Effectiveness of KAIZEN-5S program implementation


Colonel, MSc. Phan Chien Thang
Director of the company

The application of innovative tools to improve productivity, create quality products, reasonable prices, and meet the needs of customers is an urgent requirement of businesses. Therefore, over the past time, Z175 Factory, the General Department of Military Industries and Manufacture has applied the Kaizen -5S Quality Improvement Program and it has brought practical results.

Lieutenant General Nguyen Manh Hung – Political Commissar of the General Department of Military Industries and Manufacture visited and worked at Factory Z175

5S Principle is a method and model applied in businesses with the purpose of creating a clean, scientific, neat and convenient environment when using. Kaizen is a philosophy applied to promote continuous improvement activities in personal life, family, society and even working environment. When applying Kaizen in the working environment, it means continuous improvement related to everyone, from leaders and commanders to officers and employees. Every member of the organization is encouraged to make even the smallest improvements in their work to increase productivity and reduce operation costs.

Founding the effectiveness of the Kaizen-5S program in the production and business process, in October 2016, Z175 Factory cooperated with the Vietnam Productivity Institute to organize training classes and implementing practical application of 5S into the production and business processes of the Factory. In the initial period of application, the factory encountered many difficulties, such as: infrastructure, environment is not really guaranteed; machinery and equipment have not been rationally and scientifically arranged; working tools are still untidy and hard to find; the electrical system is entangled, not easily identifiable; the workshop area is difficult to clean, the lighting and ventilation system is still inadequate; documents of departments and divisions are still confused, difficult to find… Besides, the awareness of officials and employees about 5S practice is not complete, there are also thoughts of being afraid of changing.

Aware of the advantages and disadvantages, the Party Committee and Board of Directors of Z175 Factory have proposed many solutions to implement the 5S program with the spirit of “change for development”. Initially, the factory held a ceremony to deploy 5S practice program, general cleaning of the working area. Next, establishing a 5S Committee to supervise the implementation; directing departments and workshops to make the implementation plan. Organizing a contest to write slogans applying the 5S Program, in order to improve the initiative, creativity, awareness and responsibility of all officers and employees in the factory. Through the contest, there were more than 200 slogans about 5S program practice drawn from the process of labor and creativity of officials and employees. On the other hand, the factory actively researched, rearranged the system of equipment – device, machinery, technology premises, rationalized production; renovating and upgrading factories, creating a cool, green, clean and beautiful working environment landscape.

Determining that product quality is the survival of the Factory, the association of 5S with Kaizen is the foundation for all improvement activities to improve productivity and product quality and production and business efficiency. In October 2018, the factory continued to coordinate with the consultant to apply the 5S Program in combination with Kaizen into the production and business process. Launching organization of the Kaizen-5S Program. Establishing the Factory’s CI and Kaizen team; at the same time, directing the Kaizen team to develop a plan to open Kaizen at the center of each production line; mobilizing officials and employees to focus on improving technology, machinery and equipment, automation, waste reduction, productivity improvement and product quality. The Factory’s 5S Committee regularly inspects, evaluates, scores each department, rewards and punishes severely, puts the performance results of the collective, the commanders of the departments, and workshops into the emulation targets and factory salary regulations.

Over a period of time implementing the Kaizen-5S Program, the factory has achieved outstanding results, gradually promoting production capacity, improving competitiveness and occupying the market; creating a basis for the factory to develop a technology investment strategy, effectively exploiting equipment and machinery, linking research into new materials and new products, material technology with product technology, new technology with traditional technology. In which, the factory has well performed 03 key Kaizens (conveyor production lines, spare parts production, rubber processing) of CI group, which has completed 7/8 of the goals on the production lines. For example, a rubber conveyor belt production line, after implementing the Kaizen Program, the output increased 1.8 times, the cost of materials on average volume = 3%; reducing time by ≥ 6 minutes/batch; increasing OEE by ≥ 6%; grade-I product quality increased to ≥ 90%; energy consumption can be measured, the number of workers on the line is reduced by ≥ 10%; average income of workers on the line increased by ≥ 5%. The number of Kaizen of officials and employees applied to production is 420 people. Labor productivity increased on average 1.5 times on the lines. The rate of waste and quality has decreased sharply, many products have a waste rate of up to 0%. Consciousness and responsibility of officers and employees of the factory changed markedly. Along with that has created a clean, green and environmentally friendly industrial hygiene environment; The technology ground is arranged scientifically and conveniently. Every month, the main equipment of the line is evaluated for efficiency using the KPI tool expressed through the OEE index (operating efficiency of equipment). The results of working environment monitoring of Z175 Factory assessed by ETECH Company in 2019 are that the microclimate, light, noise, dust and toxic gas concentrations on the production lines meet the requirements in allowed limit. The psychophysiological index of workers at the beginning, middle and end of the shift is quite good.

Through the practical implementation of the application of the Kaizen-5S Program in production and business, Z175 Factory has drawn a number of learned lessons, which are:

Firstly, when implementing S1 (Sorting); S2 (Screening) it will discover many unreasonable points in production that need to be changed and improved and, at this time, it is appropriate to launch Kaizen in the whole unit. The combination of 5S implementation with Kaizen has created a support to promote the program faster and more practical. Currently, the factory is applying to spend 15 minutes per day, one day per month for 5S, one day every six months for general cleaning of the workplace.

Secondly, Kaizen – 5S system standards are the same, but each unit’s way of implementation may be different depending on the reality of each unit; therefore, before implementing the Kaizen-5S Program, it is necessary to assess the situation to apply accordingly so as to gain the high efficiency.

Thirdly, there is a need for drastic leadership and direction of the Party Committee, the Board of Directors, especially the head when implementing the Kaizen-5S Program. It is the reason that when applying Kaizen – 5S, it is to make changes, there will be risks, so it is necessary to take measures to manage and identify risks.

Fourth, regularly paying attention to the leadership and direction of adequate investment for the implementation of Kaizen – 5S; effectively maintaining the Kaizen- 5S practice management system which switch from self-discipline to form habit. Continuously seeking new ways of implementation, creatively applying advanced management tools to maintain and continuously improve, raising standards in management effectively, safely and minimizing waste.

Fifth, promoting scientific and technological creativity, initiatives and technical improvements in order to boost productivity, product quality and ensuring safety, giving priority to select to use chemical materials with a high environmental friendliness index. Doing well in preliminary work, summarizing, rewarding, building and replicating advanced examples. Promoting the role of mass organizations, creating emulation movements between departments.

It can be said that the implementation of the Kaizen-5S Program by Z175 Factory has really made a difference in all aspects, bringing the values of a clean, tidy and neat working environment; productivity and quality of technical rubber products are increasingly improved, equivalent to similar products in the region and the world, providing jobs and stable incomes for officials and employees of the Factory.

Since the implementation of the Kaizen-5S Program, the factory’s labor productivity has increased by 1.5 times on average. The rate of waste and quality has decreased sharply, with many products with the waste rate reduced to 0%

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