What Is Six Sigma by Prof.dr.salem A.m.al AbdulrahmaPosted by: Dr.M.Al Rashid
Posted on: Thursday, 25th December 2008, 12:39 PM.
What is Six Sigma
Prof.Dr.Salem Al AbdulRahman
2001- Jeddah (KSA)
First, what it is not. It is not a secret society, a slogan or a clichι. Six Sigma is a highly disciplined process that helps us focus on developing and delivering near-perfect products and services. Why "Sigma"? The word is a statistical term that measures how far a given process deviates from perfection. The central idea behind Six Sigma is that if you can measure how many "defects" you have in a process, you can systematically figure out how to eliminate them and get as close to "zero defects" as possible
To achieve Six Sigma quality, a process must produce no more than 3.4 defects per million opportunities. An "opportunity" is defined as a chance for nonconformance, or not meeting the required specifications. This means businesses need to be nearly flawless in executing our key processes.
Key Concepts of Six Sigma
At its core, Six Sigma revolves around a few key concepts.
Critical to Quality: Attributes most important to the customer.
Defect: Failing to deliver what the customer wants.
Process Capability: What your process can deliver.
Variation: What the customer sees and feels.
Stable Operations: Ensuring consistent, predictable processes to improve what the customer sees and feels.
Design for Six Sigma: Designing to meet customer needs and process capability.
Six Sigma focuses first on reducing process variation and then on improving the process capability.
Customers value consistent, predictable business processes that deliver world-class levels of quality. This is what Six Sigma strives to produce.
DFSS (Design for Six Sigma) is a systematic methodology utilizing tools, training and measurements to enable us to design products and processes that meet customer expectations and can be produced at Six Sigma quality levels.
DMAIC (Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control) is a process for continued improvement. It is systematic, scientific and fact based. This closed-loop process eliminates unproductive steps, often focuses on new measurements, and applies technology for improvement.
Six Sigma A vision of quality which equates with only 3.4 defects per million opportunities for each product or service transaction. Strives for perfection.
Associates are exposed to various tools and terms related to quality. Below are just a few of them.
Control Chart Monitors variance in a process over time and alerts the business to unexpected variance which may cause defects.
Defect Measurement Accounting for the number or frequency of defects that cause lapses in product or service quality.
Pareto Diagram Focuses on efforts or the problems that have the greatest potential for improvement by showing relative frequency and/or size in a descending bar graph. Based on the proven Pareto principle: 20% of the sources cause 80% of any problems.
Process Mapping Illustrated description of how things get done, which enables participants to visualize an entire process and identify areas of strength and weaknesses. It helps reduce cycle time and defects while recognizing the value of individual contributions.
Root Cause Analysis Study of original reason for nonconformance with a process. When the root cause is removed or corrected, the nonconformance will be eliminated.
Statistical Process Control The application of statistical methods to analyze data, study and monitor process capability and performance.
Tree Diagram Graphically shows any broad goal broken into different levels of detailed actions. It encourages team members to expand their thinking when creating solutions.
Black Belt Leaders of team responsible for measuring, analyzing, improving and controlling key processes that influence customer satisfaction and/or productivity growth. Black Belts are full-time positions.
Control The state of stability, normal variation and predictability. Process of regulating and guiding operations and processes using quantitative data.
CTQ: Critical to Quality (Critical "Y") Element of a process or practice which has a direct impact on its perceived quality.
Customer Needs, Expectations Needs, as defined by customers, which meet their basic requirements and standards.
Defects Sources of customer irritation. Defects are costly to both customers and to manufacturers or service providers. Eliminating defects provides cost benefits.
Green Belt Similar to Black Belt but not a full-time position.
Master Black Belt First and foremost teachers. They also review and mentor Black Belts. Selection criteria for Master Black Belts are quantitative skills and the ability to teach and mentor. Master Black Belts are full-time positions.
Variance A change in a process or business practice that may alter its expected outcome.
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