Organizing the workplace requires managing time, space, and your mindset.
Be honest, when was the last time you asked where something was in the workplace? Whether you’ve searched for something as simple as a Philips screwdriver or something as important as keys, if you can’t find what you’re looking for you’re just wasting time digging through an unorganized mess. Time and resources are precious in the workplace, especially when you’re wearing multiple hats. And we all know that time is money.
Another thing we all know is that trying to multitask in an unorganized workplace is nearly impossible. By nature, people are notoriously poor at multitasking.
But an organized workplace, that’s something everyone can achieve with actionable tips.
Don’t worry. Actionable expert tips are tangible and they can help you create 5S systems that establish an organized and efficient work area. It doesn’t take months of planning or long strategic meetings to find quick solutions you can use to help with your organization efforts.
Considering most people spend more time in the office than they do in their homes during a regular work week, a well-organized workplace has tremendous benefits. One reason for sure is the increase in efficiency because of the decrease in search time. Workplace organization can also make you feel more in control and help you clearly focus on productivity, save you time, and position you for a better quality of work.
A disorganized workplace is often the cause of most problems – like extra stress, decreased production, increased waste, machine and equipment issues, lack of communication, and increased safety concerns.
Simply ignoring waste and everything that adds disorganized clutter to your workplace is not an option if you want productivity.
Commit to walking away from the unorganized problems that keep you up at night and focus on solutions like the tips below.
Here are the top 5 workplace organizational tips that you can apply right now. Ready set – go!
1)Remove anything that doesn’t add value.
Some say that every major change starts with a purge and we couldn’t agree anymore! Going through items that don’t add value to productivity should be moved out of the area. De-cluttering one space at a time can free up tremendous space. Don’t attempt to clean sweep the entire facility at one time. Take a walk around the inside of your facility and write down areas that need the most work. After you’ve noted specific areas, take actionable steps that will help you remove waste. You can use Red Tags to help you get rid of waste and determine where to move the items.
2) Organize with Colors and Labels.
One of the biggest annoyances in every facility is that frequently used and shared tools are not put back in the right places. Stop this by taking time to label shelves, folders, bins, drawers, and mark aisles and hallways with specific colors and labels.
- Color-coding helps by: Creating designated workplaces that reduce waste and improves productivity by using color-coding as part of the 5S methodology.
Pro Tip: Keep it simple: Once you’ve identified areas to color-code, an easy rule to follow is to assign only one color per zone and ensure that the colors make sense. For instance, yellow floor marking is used for aisle ways, traffic lanes, and work cells and red floor marking is used for defects, scrap, rework, and red tagging areas.
- Labeling helps by: Labels are important to the organization process because they make it easier to get organized and stay that way. When items are labeled in the workplace it’s easier for everyone to know where to find what they need and where to replace the item.
3) Limit the need to reach up for things you use on a regular basis.
Want to be more productive in the workplace? Productivity is the economic measure of output per unit of input. Essentially, to be productive we must accomplish more by doing less. A good example of accomplishing more and doing less is by keeping frequently used tools closer to your work area so you can do less but produce more.
Try to keep items that are used on a regular basis stored in draws or cabinets or shadow-boards that are close to the worker. When employees don’t have to reach far for frequently used tools, they’re stress and more engaged in what they’re doing and more productive. Productivity also means a healthier work environment.
4) Plan out your day
We all know the urge to read the email that came in or to peek at the latest notification pop up that can interrupt focusing on the task at hand. Forbes Magazine said that the University of California Information Scientist Gloria Mark found that it takes an average of 26 minutes to recover from trivial interruptions. To avoid this, plan out your day and triage your emails, take notes, set reminders, write tasks on a dry erase board - whatever you have to do to stay focused and to keep your tasks organized.
Remember - Mindset is everything. Put yourself in a position where you can focus on doing the right task at the moment so you don’t get stressed out and can stay organized.
5) Take an extra ten or fifteen minutes at the end of your workday to organize your work area.
Before you leave at the end of the workday, conduct a simple inventory of your area. Remove the clutter, clean up any messes, and ensure all tools are placed in the appropriate spaces.
You should leave your workspace with at least 80% of your desk visible and clear of clutter. By doing this at the end of your workday you’re setting yourself up for a productive day when you enter the facility the next morning.
Don’t be afraid of implementing 5S in your workplace. While 5S is a process that will take time to create, implement and sustain, there are ways to quickly and easily see results!
Getting organized is one of the most effective skills to have in the workplace.