Tool shadow boards

What are tool shadow boards?

As the name suggests, a tool shadow board is used primarily for holding designated tools and handheld equipment items.  In line with 5S lean principles, each tool that belongs in a specific area or that is used for a specific task, has a shadow and a hook on the board. 

Whereas equipment is traditionally stored loosely in a toolbox, or left lying on a work bench, a tool shadow board ensures that items have their own ‘home’.  This forms the basis of 5S and Lean principles – ‘a place for everything, and everything in its place’. 

This often includes standard tools like spanners, screwdrivers and hammers, but it can also just as easily include bespoke tools such as machine equipment and change parts.

Why use Klipspringer tool shadow boards?

  • Increase productivity and reduce downtime caused by missing equipment.
  • Enhance visual standards by bringing dull areas to life and improving internal brand communication.
  • Consistently maintain the quality of work produced, as the right tools are always available for the job.
  • Decrease production costs by saving time and reducing production re-works.
  • Overcome verbal and written communication barriers, through the use of clearly identifiable visual tool shadows.
  • Reduce equipment replacement costs caused by lost and damaged utensils.

To find out what makes Klipspringer’s bespoke shadow boards so unique, click here.

Key Features

Click on the orange icons below to view the features of a Klipspringer tool shadow board. 

‘How tool shadow boards have created a leaner and happier culture at Fufil Food Solutions’

How does this relate to 5S and Lean improvements?

The principles of 5S are Sort, Set in Order, Shine, Standardize and Sustain, whilst Lean Manufacturing is about providing maximum value and consuming minimum resources.  Both models involve challenging the status quo with the intention of eliminating waste and introducing more efficient solutions.


Complete 5S with cleaning stations


Establish exactly which equipment items are
required, removing anything unnecessary.


Create a home for each item. Implementing
shadow boards is the most effective way to do this.


Ensure working areas are regularly cleaned
and kept uncluttered.


Implement the same improvements in all areas
and across all shifts.


Assign responsibility to continually maintain
and review standards.

Tool shadow boards also relate to Lean 6 Sigma, an approach which was originally introduced to manufacturing processes with a view to eliminating defects.

Six Sigma

Define Define the problem

What issue are you looking to solve?

Measure Map out the current situation

How does the process currently perform?

Analyse Identify the cause of the problem

What does the data tell you?

Improve Implement and verify the solution

How will you fix the problem?

Control Maintain the solution

How can you sustain the new improvement?

Brands we have worked with

Enquire about shadow boards