Six Sigma comprises various methods for process optimization and quality improvement. The focus however is on user and customer benefits. Core elements are the description, measurement, analysis, improvement and monitoring of business processes, supported by a variety of statistical methods. The DMAIC methodology maps the individual steps of a Six Sigma project.
How can Six Sigma be used successfully?
First of all, it must be understood that this is not a project-related method, but rather a fundamental methodology for quality management and entrepreneurial action. The introduction of Six Sigma is thus always also a strategic and thus a management decision. The management should therefore be involved in the implementation and support the introduction project as well as the action along this methodology. For Six Sigma to be successfully introduced, it must be in line with the existing business strategy. In some cases, the business strategy may also change and adapt.
Since the customer use and/or the customer satisfaction are the primary focus, the requirements of the customer to the product and the enterprise must be known. These will therefore be explored in the first phase of the DMAIC cycle. For this methodology to succeed, employees must be able to understand and apply the quality assurance methods used. Importantly, this may also require further training.
Whiat changes through the use of Six Sigma?
As mentioned, the use of Six Sigma partly changes the strategic orientation of the company. Consequently, it should be changed in such a way that customer benefit is an important factor in decisions and processes in the company. Furthermore, the point of view from which suppliers are selected can change. As a result, the supplier is no longer selected primarily on the basis of price, but the question of whether this supplier can contribute to improving the product in order to increase customer benefit plays a central role. However, all these things also change the corporate culture and approach to certain tasks, problems and processes over time.