- 53% of the Fortune 500 companies have been positively impacted by applying Six Sigma methods and tools
- Six Sigma eliminates the roots of any flaws or faults in a process, reducing inconsistency
- The fewer the defects, the more quality products companies are able to sell at a profit.
When American multinational telecommunications company Motorola implemented the Six Sigma concept in the mid-1980s, it was to find ways to improve its manufacturing operations.
Over 30 years later, the term has become synonymous with process optimisation across industries.
The big idea: Identify and remove defects for efficiency
The Six Sigma process is used by companies to increase efficiency through reducing defects in their processes.
Essentially, Six Sigma projects are disciplined, data-driven and designed to improve processes by finding and eliminating the roots of any flaws or faults in a process and reducing inconsistencies.
However, to implement Six Sigma projects, you may need to train your existing staff in Six Sigma techniques or employ already trained and certified professionals.
What’s in it for you: You’ll know what to fix, before it breaks
“Since Six Sigma is entirely data-driven, there is absolutely no doubt that to know exactly what to fix, you have to know first what is wrong,” according to experts at Global Six Sigma USA. “Cutting corners arbitrarily is just not done in business processes.”
Jared Munk, who received a General Electric Company Certification as a Green Belt in Six Sigma, adds: “When Six Sigma training helps employees produce products with fewer defects, the company has more quality products to sell at a profit. Higher product quality also decreases inspection and rework expenses and eliminates wasted raw material and labour.”
Related: What Can Six Sigma Do For You?
Make it happen
Kick off efficient profitability by applying these three secrets for Six Sigma success from the Technical University Of Munich. Ask the following questions:
1. What does my customer value? Six Sigma highlights the importance of understanding your customer and how they identify value. Better products lead to satisfied customers.
2. Are we following a defined process? Clear flows enable more accurate measurement of the process performance. This information helps management prioritise on how to achieve strategic goals while tracking internal efforts.
3. How do we increase productivity and product quality? Introducing a level of companywide active involvement, responsibility and clear performance measures, improves motivation and increases productivity. Everyone is working towards a common goal and can learn and progress.