Implementing lean six sigma for process improvement Essay

2332 Words Oct 4th, 2013 10 Pages


Lean Six Sigma approach is recognized widely and has been implemented predominately in manufacturing rather than other industries. To illustrate the point, this paper draws attention to the adoption of Lean Six Sigma in various industries with a case study. The combination of Lean tools and Six Sigma methodology is used to improve the process and quality by eliminating the variations and creating workflow in a process. The hypothesis of this study was that the Six Sigma technique can be used along with lean tools in order to improve process and quality in any area of industries. The review of case study discovered the use of
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In order to achieve the goals, there are several tools and methods have been introduced in lean production. The tools and methods are including:

Visual controls
Facilities layout
Pull production (also described as kanban or just-in-time)
Single minute exchange of dies (SMED)
Total productive maintenance
Source inspection
Continuous improvement (also known as kaizen)

3.2 Six Sigma
The concept of Six Sigma was developed in the early 1980’s at Motorola Corporation (Harry and Schroeder, 2000). Six Sigma can be defined as a statistical measure of the performance of a process or product (Kumi et. al., 2006). It is used as a quality control mechanism, which seeks to reduce defects or variations in a process to 3.4 per million opportunities thereby optimizing output and increasing customer satisfaction (Sambhe, 2012). Sigma is representing the standard deviation, a unit of measurement that designates the distribution or spread about the mean of a process (Six Sigma Academy, 2002). In addition, the Six Sigma uniquely driven by close understanding of customer needs, disciplined use of fact, data, and statistical analysis, and diligent attention to managing improving, and reinventing business processes (Pande, P., et. al. 2000). The Six Sigma methodology uses statistical tools to identify the factors that matter most for improving the quality of processes and generating bottom-line results. The Six Sigma DMAIC (Define, Measure,