Making Order out of Chaos? Part I of V “The FIVE S’s”.

August 20th, 2012

How well are your company’s procurement and other processes organized?

Today’s post is written by Heather Powell a SafeSourcing Account Manager.

Business processes that drive quality are important within every area of a company, and probably none more important than the procurement organization. The amount of detail that a buyer or category manager touches on a daily basis relative to a company’s finances, products and services requires careful planning and process control supported by constant open communication.

If you were to take tomorrow off, would your co-worker know where your work is? Would they know where you have started and stopped in a project?

Where do you start an organization process? With the 5 S’s!

What are the 5 S’s? Sort, Set, Shine, Standardize, Sustain

How can these 5 words help you?

1.) Sort through the workplace to remove items, such as papers and machinery, which are not needed. Review then remove any applications or processes that are time-wasting, such as complex software or a redundant printing machine. Keep the information, processes, software, machinery and items that are needed in the workstation.

2.) Set the workstation is order by putting in place proper storage systems. Place larger and heavier items on the floor and fix cabinets and storage bins to store smaller items. Ask for professional help from an IT specialist or a vendor to create simpler online documentation and information storage systems. Label the storage spaces, such as cabinets, for easier identification and retrieval of information and items.

3.) Shine the workplace by regularly cleaning workstations even before they become too dirty. Assign housekeeping responsibilities by creating a log in which each person undertakes a task, which will contribute to keeping the workplace clean. Set up simple channels of communication by creating notice boards or using stick-ons to organize tasks.

4.) Standardize the changes made by creating policies and best practices guidelines. Include employees in the workplace when brainstorming and write down the specific steps that will be undertaken to sort out what is needed, and how to effectively store items and information, and how to keep the place clean. Post these guidelines on a notice board that can be seen by everyone.

5.) Sustain the new culture of orderliness and organization. Reward those who contribute significantly to the best practices established and those who develop new ways of applying the methodology.

These 5 steps are the first step to getting your organization organized. Please look for tomorrow’s blog on how to further organize your company.

If you’d like to learn more about the process required to improve your procurement departments procure to pay process, please contact a SafeSourcing customer services representative.

We look forward to and appreciate your comments.

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