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More productive staff at mhs homes after 5S

Ad Esse at mhs homes - 5S

Results & ROI

  • mhs homes has identified a total saving of 10 minutes per week per employee across office-based staff.
  • To date the organisation has delivered a 32.30% reduction in files – 355,277 files deleted, 135.52 GB space created and 29,668 folders removed

The client

Formed in 1990, mhs homes is one of the largest housing providers in Kent managing more than 8000 homes in the Medway, Maidstone and Gravesham areas of Kent. The organisation employs more than 250 people to service approximately 20,000 residents.

The challenge

mhs homes embarked on an organisation-wide Lean implementation programme, working through key services within the organisation.  Broken into phases, the main focus of phase 1 was staff engagement and training Lean principles, while phase 2 focused on realising financial benefits and making significant service improvements.  Ad Esse were engaged for phase 2 of the Lean implementation programme. We approached the phase as two key work streams; one delivering targeted service reviews and the other to introduce Lean Foundation to support the changes.  Part of the Lean Foundation roll out included creating a more productive and orderly electronic environment for staff using Electronic 5S.

The approach

Roll out of Electronic 5S was broken down into 3 key steps:

Set up and governance

An initial meeting between the ICT team and Service Improvement Team was held to propose a set of standards, a high-level file structure and a roll out schedule, all based on Electronic 5S principles.


Data revealed a shared drive, used by circa 300 staff, with in excess of 1.1 million files and 120,00 sub folders, as well as 440,000 files in personal drives.  Further investigation showed 10% of the files were duplicates and 7000 documents had file paths that were over 260 characters in length, rendering the file path technically invalid.


A workshop with each team was held to introduce Electronic 5S before two practical sessions were held per team to create a new file structure, to sort existing files into this new structure and to meet the new agreed standards.

The benefits

Some teams were able to make huge progress in a very short amount of time.  In two days the Voids Team removed over 130,000 files from their shared drive. The Grounds and Caretaking Team removed nearly 85% of their files, while the Repairs Team deleted 93% from their shared drive.