The principles of Six Sigma can be used by individual employees to enhance their productivity.Organizations should encourage employees to apply the principles of Six Sigma in their work life.
Often companies and businesses fail to realize that individual productivity of employees at work has a direct impact on the bottom-line (profitability) of the business. When the individual employees are more productive,organizational productivity automatically goes up.The higher the organizational productivity, the higher will be the value created for the stakeholders of the organization.
Many employees suffer from lower productivity at workplace because their work-area is disorganized.This is particularly true for service companies like IT firms which employ a lot of white collar workers.A recent study suggests that employees tend to lose at least one hour each day at work because their work area is disorganized.Japanese are famous for their obsession with efficiency.Therefore they were also the first people to have realized the significance of workplace disorganization in bringing down individual productivity of employees.
Therefore the Japanese carved out five principles for improving workplace organization so that individual productivity doesn’t suffer because of this. These principles are of 5S – Sort, Straighten, Scrub, Standardize and Sustain. And Japanese have successfully applied these five principles in the cases of both manufacturing and service industries.By Sort it is meant that employees should keep only those items at workplace that are needed. Any item that is not needed should be immediately discarded. Cluttering should be avoided at all costs at workplace.
By Straighten it is meant, that once the non-essential items have been discarded, the essential items should be kept at designated places. This helps in finding items easily when their need arises.By Scrub it is meant that the workplace should be kept absolutely clean. Employees working in manufacturing should keep their tools clean. This increases the efficiency and effectiveness of tools. Employees working on workstations should keep them clean. Clean workplace has a positive impact on the morale of employees. Higher the morale of employees, higher is their productivity.
By Standardize it is meant that organizations should establish some standards on how employees should keep their workspace. This helps in making employees strive for making the workplace more organized.
By Sustain it is meant that employees should regularly strive to keep their workspace clean. This can be achieved by making it a routine that at the end of every day at work, one should clean his or her workspace and ensure that everything is in its proper place.Six Sigma is about focusing on continuous improvement in efficiency and quality. It is as relevant at the personal level as at the organizational level.