Successful implementation results in elimination of 7 types of wastes (classified as- Transportation, Inventory, Motion, Waiting, Overproduction, Over-Processing, and Defects) and produces goods and services with rates of 3.4 defects per million opportunities.
Further, this process involves enhancing production flow rate and ability to serve customers. The idea behind Six Sigma is to pinpoint processes or materials in a company that are deemed ineffective and useless, otherwise a waste of money. It aims to perfect the final product by eliminating unnecessary stages and producing a high quality product to begin with.
The main idea that serves Lean Six Sigma is the same as the principles of Six Sigma methodology, which his DMAIC. These acronyms stand for Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control. This means that the business strives to find the problem, develops a better understanding and come with a tool for measuring its effectiveness, monitoring the entire process by performing experiments, enhancing the process based on the results of the experiments and regulating the methods in order to provide continuous development.
The reason that “Lean” comes into play with Six Sigma methodology is that it implements the enhancement of the process and uses it as a tool for constant improvement. It is less likely that the business will fall back into its old ways when using Lean Six Sigma methodology. It works flawlessly with Six Sigma because it uses all the same principles yet enhances their effectiveness.
The lean principles that are added to Six Sigma are focused on the process of manufacturing. Some universities and courses are set up to teach specific Lean Six Sigma principles. It is known that companies like to show that they have been involved in the Lean Six Sigma process because this shows that the company has a certain level of quality. Many employees choose to gain certification in Lean Six Sigma in order to increase their value to a company. Individuals with this accreditation know how to lower errors and enhance productivity.
It is an even more powerful method in combination because it gives a company the ability to produce products that are of the best quality and at a fraction of the original speed it took. Lean Six Sigma focuses largely on the customer and their satisfaction, knows how to find solutions, maximizes efficiency, produces a smooth process, eliminates unnecessary materials or stages, controls the product better and improves activities in a manageable way. The customer is the most important factor in the entire operation and Lean Six Sigma is fully aware of that.
About the Author: Shruti Bhat PhD, MBA, Certified Lean Six Sigma Black Belt
Dr. Shruti Bhat is an award-winning Business Excellence Leader, Global Continuous Improvement Mastermind, Best-selling Author and Speaker. She is Continuous Improvement Advisor to several start-ups, mid-size and growing firms in Canada, USA, India, Africa and Emerging markets. She has authored eight business books and is an invited speaker at several national and international conferences, symposia and workshops.
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