Do you ever get aggravated from a process you deem unacceptable or inefficient?
This happens all the time - varying from day-to-day activities to more strategic initiatives.
Six-sigma is determined to analyze processes and reduce defects (or variation). It is often used or seen in lean manufacturing or in call-centers. I have seen the process work and I believe it should be initiated in almost any work process that it can be. I am a huge proponent of continuous improvement or lean principles - one of them being the in-depth statistical defect reducing six-sigma process.
Have you ever tried to measure yourself in some process? Better yet, ever think of how someone or some company can continue to screw up over and over again?
Let's say you had 1 defect out of 10 opportunities - is that six-sigma? Let's take a look below.
Not even close! The sigma of a 90% (or 9 out of 10) yield results in a 2.78 sigma... quite a bit off from six-sigma. A DPMO (or defects per million opportunity) is 100,000 of a 90% yield or 2.78 sigma.
Let's take a look at the below DPMO levels and the DPMO of six-sigma.
As you can see above, the DPMO of six-sigma is 3.4... a much different # than a 90% yield. If you think 90% is good, it is not in six-sigma. Depending on the process or industry, sigma levels are much different. Airplane manufacturing and medical testing processes are typically a higher sigma as the severity of a defect could be life or death.
Six-sigma follows a DMAIC process - Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, and Control. The DMAIC process is a great way to tackle inefficient processes within the workplace. Unfortunately, many organizations and industries do not utilize six-sigma - whether it be internally or externally administered. Many Lean manufacturing principles are used within a six-sigma process, but the main goal of six-sigma is to measure the variation of a process and to bring it within an accepted six-sigma level of variation and to always continuously improve!
Once a company or individual utilizes the DMAIC process to solve and tackle complex issues, they will see the results and continue to use the six-sigma process within the workplace!
If you want to learn more or need consulting work done, feel free to contact me!
Supply Chain Management and Industrial Engineering Consulting