Background to Six Sigma in Business Process Improvement

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Background to Six Sigma The contemporary business environment is rapidly evolving. With the increased impetus toward globalization, organizations are undergoing continuous and rapid change driven by increased consumer expectations, the advent of new technologies, and the very real prospect of global competition (Bendell, 2005). This has resulted in a dramatically different business environment in which the modern business, in order to survive and prosper, is forced to evolve and regularly revise their internal and external business processes. One of the tools that was developed to aid in this change process was Six Sigma. Six Sigma is a tool, not an edict. Like many tools, it is dependent upon two things: 1) How it is used, and 2) The quality of the data. Six-Sigma was originally designed for use by Motorola in the early 1980s. It was put in place in order to not only uncover, but to solve, certain manufacturing processes that were not working appropriately. It improved the company by defining a clearly focus on measurable issues that could be quantified and linked to profitability. It also increased an emphasis on management's commitment to utilizing the strategic planning system to actually implement a cause-effect relationship within the manufacturing model. However, when all the bells and whistles come off, and all the statistical data and measurement are broken down, the model is really a quality improvement template. It is not designed for any subjectivity and often
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