is Six Sigma?
Six Sigma is a tool that, when utilized, will significantly
improve customer satisfaction by constantly reducing defects and
variation in every aspect of the business. It has the effect of
accelerating existing improvement processes, thus enabling an
organization to obtain its goals of complete customer
What places Six Sigma apart from some of the other initiatives
is that all improvements are driven by the voice of the customer
(VOC). This voice is translated into a critical to
quality (CTQ) characteristics. Six Sigma also allows an
organization to compare and assess quality improvements from
different types of products, processes or services. The
measurement component is called the DPMO, Defects per
does Six Sigma work?
The three strategies involved in Six Sigma are: Process
Management, Process Design/Redesign, and Process Improvement.
Process Management is an on-going cross-functional ownership and
measurement of core support processes. Process Design/Redesign
is the creation of a "new" process to achieve
exponential improvement and/or meet the changing demands of
customers, technology and competition. It can handle totally
dysfunctional processes and reengineer them. It is also known as
DFSS, Design for Six Sigma.
Process Improvement focuses on problem solving, aimed at
eliminating the "vital few" root causes. The most
common reference in this strategy refers to the DMAIC Model.
Define - select customer's Critical to Quality
characteristics and performance
Measure - create a measurement system and validate the
Analyze - identify the sources of variation from the
Improve - discover process relationships and establish
new and improved procedures
Control - sustain the gain by implementing process
Who is involved in Six Sigma?
All levels of the organization should be involved, starting with
Green Belts, who assist in all projects, Black Belts,
who head up the projects and train the Green Belts, Master
Black Belts, who teach and mentor the Black Belts. Other
roles include Champions and Directors.