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    Six Sigma

    Six Sigma

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    Not to be confused with Sigma 6 (disambiguation) or 5S (methodology).

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    Six Sigma () is a set of techniques and tools for process improvement. It was introduced by American engineer Bill Smith while working at Motorola in 1986.[1][2] A six sigma process is one in which 99.99966% of all opportunities to produce some feature of a part are statistically expected to be free of defects.

    Six Sigma strategies seek to improve manufacturing quality by identifying and removing the causes of defects and minimizing variability in manufacturing and business processes. This is done by using empirical and statistical quality management methods and by hiring people who serve as Six Sigma experts. Each Six Sigma project follows a defined methodology and has specific value targets, such as reducing pollution or increasing customer satisfaction.

    The term originates from statistical modeling of manufacturing processes. The maturity of a manufacturing process can be described by a rating indicating its yield or the percentage of defect-free products it creates—specifically, to within how many standard deviations of a normal distribution the fraction of defect-free outcomes corresponds.


    1 History 1.1 Etymology 2 Doctrine 2.1 Methodologies 2.1.1 DMAIC 2.1.2 DMADV

    2.2 Professionalization

    2.3 Certification

    2.4 Tools and methods

    2.4.1 Software

    3 Role of the 1.5 sigma shift

    3.1 Sigma levels

    4 Six Sigma in practice

    4.1 Manufacturing

    4.2 Engineering and construction

    4.3 Finance 4.4 Supply chain 4.5 Healthcare 5 Criticism

    5.1 Lack of originality

    5.2 Inadequate for complex manufacturing

    5.3 Role of consultants

    5.4 Potential negative effects

    5.5 Over-reliance on statistics

    5.6 1.5 sigma shift

    5.7 Stifling creativity in research

    5.8 Lack of documentation

    6 See also 7 References 8 Further reading


    Motorola pioneered Six Sigma, setting a "six sigma" goal for its manufacturing business. It registered Six Sigma as a service mark on June 11, 1991 U.S. Service Mark 1,647,704; on December 28, 1993, it registered Six Sigma as a trademark. In 2005 Motorola attributed over $17 billion in savings to Six Sigma.[3]

    Honeywell and General Electric were also early adopters of Six Sigma. As GE's CEO, in 1995 Jack Welch made it central to his business strategy,[4] and in 1998 it announced $350 million in cost savings thanks to Six Sigma, which was an important factor in the spread of Six Sigma (this figure later grew to more than $1 billion).[5] By the late 1990s, about two-thirds of the Fortune 500 organizations had begun Six Sigma initiatives with the aim of reducing costs and improving quality.[6]

    In recent years, some practitioners have combined Six Sigma ideas with lean manufacturing to create a methodology named Lean Six Sigma.[7] The Lean Six Sigma methodology views lean manufacturing, which addresses process flow and waste issues, and Six Sigma, with its focus on variation and design, as complementary disciplines aimed at promoting "business and operational excellence".[7]

    In 2011, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has published the first standard "ISO 13053:2011" defining a Six Sigma process.[8] Other standards have been created mostly by universities or companies with Six Sigma first-party certification programs.


    Normal distribution underlies the statistical assumptions of Six Sigma. At 0, μ (mu) marks the mean, with the horizontal axis showing distance from the mean, denoted in units of standard deviation (represented as σ or sigma). The greater the standard deviation, the larger the spread of values; for the green curve, μ = 0 and σ = 1. The upper and lower specification limits (USL and LSL) are at a distance of 6σ from the mean. Normal distribution means that values far away from the mean are extremely unlikely—approximately 1 in a billion too low, and the same too high. Even if the mean were to move right or left by 1.5 standard deviations (also known as a 1.5 sigma shift, colored red and blue), there is still a safety cushion.

    The term Six Sigma comes from statistics, specifically from the field of statistical quality control, which evaluates process capability. Originally, it referred to the ability of manufacturing processes to produce a very high proportion of output within specification. Processes that operate with "six sigma quality" over the short term are assumed to produce long-term defect levels below 3.4 defects per million opportunities (DPMO). The 3.4 dpmo is based on a "shift" of ± 1.5 sigma explained by Mikel Harry. This figure is based on the tolerance in the height of a stack of discs.[9][10]

    Specifically, say that there are six standard deviations—represented by the Greek letter σ (sigma)—between the mean—represented by μ (mu)—and the nearest specification limit. As process standard deviation goes up, or the mean of the process moves away from the center of the tolerance, fewer standard deviations will fit between the mean and the nearest specification limit, decreasing the sigma number and increasing the likelihood of items outside specification. According to a calculation method employed in process capability studies, this means that practically no[] items will fail to meet specifications.[9]

    स्रोत : en.wikipedia.org

    Six Sigma

    Six Sigma

    Six Sigma Related terms:

    Information TechnologyProcess ControlSupply ChainTotal Quality ManagementUsabilityBusiness Process RedesignProcess Improvement

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    Phase 3: Process Concept Evolution

    Mark von Rosing, ... Henrik von Scheel, in The Complete Business Process Handbook, 2015


    Six Sigma, or 6σ as it is also written, is a collection of methods, techniques and tools for process improvement. The basic thinking of Six Sigma can be traced back to Carl Friedrich Gauss (1777-1855) as a measurement standard by introducing the concept of the normal curve. In the 1920, Walter Shewhart demonstrated that sigma imply where a process requires improvement. In 1986, Bill Smith and Mikel Harry, two engineers at Motorola were accredited to having developed “Six Sigma”, and in 1995, Jack Welch made it the central business strategy of General Electric.

    Today, the principles are widely adopted across industry sectors, and in recent years the Six Sigma ideas have merged with the Lean manufacturing methodology, naming it Lean Six Sigma. The Lean Six Sigma methodology aim to support the business and operational excellence by focusing on variation, design, waste issues and process flows.89 Companies such as Motorola, General Electric, Verizon, and IBM uses Lean Six Sigma as a growth strategy to rethink and transform themselves through efficiency - from organizational setup to manufacturing, software development to sales and distribution, and finally for service delivery functions.

    View chapter Purchase book


    Tim Weilkiens, ... Kim Nena Duggen, in OCEB 2 Certification Guide (Second Edition), 2016


    The role names of Six Sigma are based on ranks used in Japanese martial arts. Figure 7.6 shows the hierarchy of Six Sigma roles. The Program Manager is responsible for the introduction and implementation of Six Sigma. Six Sigma Champions promote the Six Sigma program. They establish the new way of thinking and are responsible, for example, for assigning the Black Belt, Green Belt, and Yellow Belt roles. The Master Black Belt is an experienced Six Sigma expert who works as a coach and trainer of the Six Sigma project. The Black Belt roles are experienced Six Sigma users who usually manage Six Sigma projects. Green Belts are leaders in Six Sigma projects. Yellow Belts support Black and Green Belts. They can also implement small projects independently. The hierarchy of roles reflects the requested Six Sigma capabilities.

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    ■ Figure 7.6. Six Sigma Roles

    View chapter Purchase book

    Incremental Improvement with Lean and Six Sigma

    In Business Process Change (Third Edition), 2014

    The Six Sigma Approach to Process Improvement

    In an ideal company, every process would already be mapped and measured by those responsible for managing the process. In reality, of course, most processes are not mapped or well understood by those who manage them. Moreover, if they are measured, then functional measures are usually the norm. In some companies, managers could read one of the popular Six Sigma books and then implement the ideas by themselves. In most cases, however, it works best if the manager involves the workers in the process of analysis and shares with them the satisfaction of achieving the goals. Six Sigma practitioners always talk in terms of process improvement projects and focus on teams, not on individual managerial efforts.

    Many Six Sigma projects begin by helping a management team develop a process architecture. If an architecture already exists, then the Six Sigma practitioner focuses on helping managers identify projects that will benefit most from a process improvement effort.

    Process improvement projects based on the Six Sigma method are usually short and typically range from 1 to 6 months. In many companies that have adopted the Six Sigma approach, the executive committee chooses two or three processes for improvement every 6 months. Some of the Six Sigma books give the impression that Six Sigma projects tackle value chains or major business processes. They reinforce this impression by discussing processes at small companies or relatively simple business processes. In reality, most Six Sigma projects focus on a subprocess or subsubprocess. Many focus on what we would regard as a single activity.

    To clarify this, consider that most Six Sigma projects focus on monitoring two or three measures. If one were to try to monitor an auto production line or the insurance company sales system with two to three measures, one would not get the kind of data that Six Sigma projects need to identify causes and to check that changes are getting the desired results. Put another way, it would take at least a month just to analyze the subprocesses in a large business process like an auto production line or a large insurance sales process.

    Measuring an entire value chain or business process with two or three measures is a reasonable thing for a process manager to do. Unfortunately, if the measures suggest that sales are decreasing or that production is down 5%, they do not usually suggest the cause. In most cases, the process manager will need to examine more specific measures to determine which subprocess or subsubprocess is responsible for the problem. In other words, measures on large processes usually only provide early warning signals that a more detailed study needs to be initiated.

    स्रोत : www.sciencedirect.com

    Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ) on Six Sigma

    MCQ on Six Sigma. Multiple Choice Questions on Six Sigma. Objective Questions on Six Sigma. Interview Questions on Six Sigma.

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    Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ) on Six Sigma1-Who is considered to be the father of Six Sigma?

    (A) Bill Smith (B) Walter Shewhart (C) Jack Welch

    (D) None of the above

    2-The concept of Six Sigma was developed by the following company.

    (A) General Electric

    (B) Motorola (C) Honeywell (D) DuPont

    3-Six Sigma strategies seek to improve the quality of the output of a process by

    (A) identifying the causes of defects

    (B) removing  the causes of defects

    (C) minimizing variability in manufacturing

    (D) all of the above

    4-Processes that operate with “six sigma quality” over the short term are assumed to produce long-term defect levels below ___ defects per million opportunities (DPMO)

    (A) 2.4 (B) 3.4 (C) 4.4 (D) 5.4

    5-The aim of Six Sigma initiative is to

    (A) reduce cost (B) improve quality

    (C) both (A) and (B)

    (D) none of the above

    6-Combination of Six Sigma and Lean manufacturing is known as

    (A) Advanced Six Sigma

    (B) Lean Six Sigma

    (C) Operational Six Sigma

    (D) None of the above

    7-The first standard published by the International Standard Organization (ISO) defining a Six Sigma process.

    (A) ISO 13053:2009 (B) ISO 13053:2010 (C) ISO 13053:2011 (D) ISO 13053:2012

    8-Six Sigma project follows the following project methodology(ies)


    (C) Both (A) and (B)

    (D) None of the above

    9-“DMAIC” is used for projects aimed at

    (A) improving an existing business process

    (B) creating new product or process designs

    (C) Both (A) and (B)

    (D) None of the above

    10-“DMAIC” is used for projects aimed at

    (A) improving an existing business process

    (B) creating new product or process designs

    (C) Both (A) and (B)

    (D) None of the above

    11-In “DMAIC”, M stands for

    (A) Method (B) Measure (C) Machine (D) Manpower

    12-Poka Yoke means

    (A) mistake proofing

    (B) standardization (C) process control

    (D) none of the above

    13-The percentage yield in Six Sigma is

    (A) 93.3 (B) 99.38 (C) 99.977 (D) 99.99966

    14-Six Sigma is applicable to

    (A) Finance (B) Supply chain (C) Healthcare

    (D) All of the above

    ANSWERS:1-(A), 2-(B), 3-(D), 4-(B), 5-(C), 6-(B), 7-(C), 8-(C), 9-(A), 10-(B), 11-(B), 12-(A), 13-(D), 14-(D)

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