Free 5S Audit Checklist | PDF | SafetyCulture (2024)

Published 8 Mar 2024

Article byJona Tarlengco

|4 min read

What is a 5S Audit Checklist?

A 5S audit checklist is a tool used for performing 5S audits in the workplace. It can help evaluators determine if workers follow 5S standards correctly and reinforce conformance with 5S principles at all times. They can tailor this checklist according to the specific needs of their organization.

What is 5S Audit?

The 5S audit is the systematic approach to identifying improvement opportunities in the workplace. It generally observes the proper implementation of 5S in the work area which stands for the 5 steps of this methodology—Seiri (Sort), Seiton (Systematize), Seiso (Shining), Seiketsu (Standardizing), and sh*tsuke (Sustaining).

Benefits of Performing 5S Audits

Carrying out 5S audits is key to reinforcing these standards consistently in the organization. With the help of these checks, organizations can:

  • Identify and eliminate activities that don’t add value to the operations
  • Standardize work processes and procedures for better efficiency
  • Detect and resolve potential safety hazards in the workplace
  • Maintain high standards of cleanliness and organization in workspaces
  • Increase employee engagement through involvement in 5S activities

Implementing the 5S system may appear small and trivial at first, but these small changes, when repeated over time, will eventually lead to bigger results. This system can also be used with other methods and systems, such as the 5W1H method.

Why Should You Use a Checklist for 5S Audits?

Checklists play an essential role in ensuring a consistent and effective auditing process for 5S principles. It supports the organization’s efforts to achieve and sustain 5S excellence in the workplace.

Here are 5 great reasons why you should start using 5S audit checklist templates:

  1. Standardization – A 5S checklist a handy outline of criteria, requirements, and expectations for each of the 5S elements ensures all audits are performed the same way throughout the organization, regardless of who performs the process.
  2. Focus and StructureWith a structured approach to 5S audits, auditors can assess different work areas consistently without missing critical points.
  3. Comprehensive Coverage – A well-designed checklist ensures that no important areas are overlooked and that any potential deficiencies are captured.
  4. Documentation – They not only provide a historical trail of audit results but also serve as reference points for tracking progress and following up on corrective actions.
  5. Continuous Improvement – With the help of checklists, organizations can boost their 5S efforts, which can lead to improved operational performance and better productivity.

What to Include in Your 5S Audit Checklist

5S checklists are a valuable resource for carrying out 5S audits in the workplace.Here’s a quick rundown of the essential items to cover in your 5S audit checklist:

  • Sort – Make sure that only the required tools, equipment, furniture, spare parts, and materials are present in the work area. Clear away all tripping hazards, such as around the vicinity of places designated for walking, standing, and working.
  • Set in Order – Ensure that equipment, machinery, and tools, among others, are placed in identifiable locations and clearly labeled.
  • Shine – Free work areas from dirt, debris, obstructions, and other unnecessary items that can hinder working efficiently and safely.
  • Standardize – Store tools, equipment, furniture, and paperwork in designated areas, immediately after each use.
  • Sustain – Uphold consistent observation of the 5S system and recognize those who show a commitment to maintaining organized, efficient, and standardized workplace practices.

If you want to know more about the detailed items for the 5S audit checklist, visit 5S Principles.

Increase Team Efficiency Through 5S Training

It takes an excellent 5S training program to ensure that a workforce is contributing responsibly to a Lean business operation without risking their health and safety. While often ignored, this training is highly valuable to almost any industry.

Integrate 5S training into your daily operations through SafetyCulture’s Training feature. This feature allows you to customize and deploy 5S training courses that your employees can complete on mobile devices. These courses cover topics such as the history of the 5S system, its five pillars, the importance of its implementation, and how it can be applied at work.

FAQs about 5s Audit

To perform a 5S audit, the following steps should be taken:

  1. Take or attach a photo of the workplace’s current status for reference.
  2. Do a visual inspection of your workplace.
  3. Go through the questionnaire per category and assign a score.
  4. Tally the scores to see how well the workplace complies with the principles of 5S.
  5. Create a conclusion and establish an action plan if needed.

In a 5S audit, each item per category is scored from zero to five, with zero meaning it deviates from the principle and 5 as flawless and with no deviation. Once the audit is complete, the scores for each category are added and divided by the number of questions for that specific “S” category.

A best practice would be conducting a 5S audit on a monthly or quarterly basis. Some organizations can also go for weekly or bi-weekly audits, especially when undergoing significant process changes or implementing the 5S system for the first time.

Perform Efficient 5S Audits with SafetyCulture

While typically done by filling out paper-based forms, which can take time and are prone to human error, 5S audits can be accomplished efficiently with the help of digital tools like SafetyCulture (formerly iAuditor). Empower your teams to improve safety and quality in the workplace with an intuitive mobile app solution.

The SafetyCulture 5S audit app allows you to:

  • Capture photos and videos of identified hazards and non-compliant areas
  • Assign the right people to rectify the issues spotted during audits and schedule weekly, monthly, or quarterly 5S audits
  • Export and share 5S audit PDF, Web, and Excel reports across the organization
  • Align all teams with the most up-to-date best practices and standard procedures using Heads Up
  • Train employees about the ins and outs of the 5S methodology with mobile-ready courses

Try SafetyCulture for free!

Featured 5S Audit Checklists

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General 5S Housekeeping Checklist

A General 5S Housekeeping Checklist is used to organize workspaces and enable employees to perform their work efficiently, effectively, and safely. Use this checklist and begin your 5S inspection by following the 5S principles.

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5S Manufacturing Checklist

Use this 5S audit checklist for manufacturing companies to help your business improve productivity through workplace cleanliness and efficiency. This 5S manufacturing checklist can help identify the unnecessary items stored in the manufacturing site and ensure machines, equipment, and tools are kept clean and in working order.

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5S Warehouse Checklist

Use this 5S checklist as a guide to:

  • Check if floors, loading docks, and storage areas are free from obstructions or blockages.
  • Assess if forklifts, materials, equipment, and containers are stored in their proper places.
  • Standardize various rules, regulations, and best practices in the work area.
  • Emphasize the importance of doing the 5s audits regularly.

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5S Office Checklist

Inspect the cleanliness, order, and structure of your facilities by using this 5S Office Checklist. This checklist will help ensure that the cabinets, shelves, and files have labels to allow immediate identification.

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5S Laboratory Checklist

Use this 5S audit checklist for laboratory and housekeeping tasks. This checklist walks you through the areas to pay attention to during audits around the premises—from walkways and fixtures to chemical storage and laboratory equipment.

Free 5S Audit Checklist | PDF | SafetyCulture (1)

  • Free 5S Audit Checklist | PDF | SafetyCulture (2)
Article by
Jona Tarlengco

Jona Tarlengco is a content writer and researcher for SafetyCulture since 2018. She usually writes about safety and quality topics, contributing to the creation of well-researched articles. Her 5-year experience in one of the world’s leading business news organisations helps enrich the quality of the information in her work.

Free 5S Audit Checklist | PDF | SafetyCulture (2024)


What is a 5S audit checklist? ›

5S is a system for workplace optimization, which uses a five-step method to organize and maintain workplaces, systems, and processes. The five Japanese terms represent: sort; set in order; shine; standardize; and sustain. A 5S program is a good place to start when introducing a lean laboratory approach.

How do you make a 5S audit? ›

The five "S" steps are:
  1. Sort (Seiri) Remove all unnecessary items from the workplace. ...
  2. Set in order (Seiton) Create a specific location for everything that remains. ...
  3. Shine (Seiso) Clean and inspect the workplace. ...
  4. Standardize (Seiketsu) Standardize best practices within the workplace. ...
  5. Sustain (sh*tsuke)

How to score and audit a 5S exercise? ›

To find the total 5S audit score, simply divide sum of the audit by 5, the number of “S” standards being evaluated. For example, if you scored each “S” a 3 (perfect score), the total score of the audit will be 3 ((3+3+3+3+3) / 5).

What are the 5 C's of audit? ›

Audit team reports frequently adhere to the rule of the “Five C's” of data sharing and communication, and a thorough summary in a report will include each of these elements. The “Five C's” are criteria, condition, cause, consequence, and corrective action.

What are the 5S standards for audit? ›

How is a 5S audit conducted? Preparation Define clear criteria and standards for each of the 5S steps (sort, systematise, clean, standardise, self-discipline). Create a checklist or evaluation form that covers the relevant aspects to be checked during the audit.

How often should a 5S audit be carried out? ›

Conduct 5S audits regularly

Note: it is critical to make sure people that work in the area being audited are present and part of the dialog! Weekly Audit (Best approach) Assign teams to review their own areas and perform a self-check of their work environment. Monthly Audit: Performed by the supervisor in charge.

How to do an audit checklist? ›

How Can You Create an Internal Audit Checklist for Your Company?
  1. Review the company's policies and procedures. ...
  2. Assess the company's risk level. ...
  3. Tailor the checklist to meet the specific needs of the company. ...
  4. Include all the essential areas that need an audit. ...
  5. Check the company's quality management system documentation.
Jan 6, 2024

How to do a simple audit? ›

The basic steps to conduct an internal audit are as follows:
  1. Identify areas that need auditing. ...
  2. Determine how often auditing and field work needs to be done. ...
  3. Create an audit calendar. ...
  4. Alert departments of scheduled audits. ...
  5. Interview employees. ...
  6. Perform field work. ...
  7. Document results. ...
  8. Report findings.
Apr 6, 2023

What is the 5S audit score system? ›

A 5S audit score is a number that shows how well a place of work follows the 5S rules - Sort, Set in order, Shine, Standardize, and Sustain. A higher score means a better organized and safer workplace.

What is the 5S assessment tool? ›

The 5S Manufacturing Assessment is a tool to determine whether or not the standards of 5S (Sort, Set-in-Order, Shine, Standardize and Sustain) are being met in a physical manufacturing environment.

What is the 5 step audit cycle? ›

2) Agreeing standards of best practice (audit criteria). 3) Collecting data. 4) Analysing data against standards. 5) Feeding back results.

What is the check list in the 5S system? ›

5S audit checklists assess the implementation and conformity of the overarching methodology: Sort, Set in Order, Shine, Standardize, and Sustain.

What is 5S meaning? ›

Method and Implementation Approach. 5S is a cyclical methodology: sort, set in order, shine, standardize, sustain the cycle. This results in continuous improvement.

What is the 5 step audit process? ›

Audit Process
  • What happens during an audit? Internal audit conducts assurance audits through a five-phase process which includes selection, planning, conducting fieldwork, reporting results, and following up on corrective action plans.
  • Selection. ...
  • Planning. ...
  • Fieldwork. ...
  • Reporting. ...
  • Follow-up.

What is 5S with an example? ›

5s Lean is a systematic approach aimed at optimizing workplace operations by reducing waste, improving efficiency, and creating an organized environment. The methodology derives its name from its core principles: Sort, Set in Order, Shine, Standardize, and Sustain.

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