Organizations expect wonders from their Six Sigma efforts, and they should. Six Sigma principles and methodology bring statistical discipline to the business processes. What that simply means is process improvement must be measured and proven we can't depend on just anecdotal evidence. Six Sigma has helped organizations achieve many fold increase in productivity and quality, making them competitive by reducing defects, costs and time to market.
Over the years the technical aspects of the Six Sigma methodology have be applied on thousands of projects worldwide. With this level of deployment and documented success by countless organizations, the actual Six Sigma technical process is not a mystery. You can visit a number of websites and pick up books to construct a very good Six Sigma Methodology.
There are two important Six Sigma methodology streams and then there are a number of variations:
DMAIC Methodology: This methodology is used when an organization wants to improve existing business processes. The acronym DMAIC stands for Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control.
DFSS Methodology: This methodology is used when organizations want to introduce a new business process. The objective of DFSS is to design the new process(es) from the outset to be compliant with the Six Sigma principles. The acronym DFSS stands for Designed for Six Sigma.
There is also a Lean Six Sigma, and many more variations. These variations are basically around the same theme but add specific best practices from different experiences of the authors.
But, how do you convert these methodologies and Six Sigma processes into actionable steps for the Six Sigma team members? This is where our 6D Six Sigma Methodology comes in. But, first...
What is Missing from Six Sigma Methods?
What is lacking in these off the shelf methodologies (available over the web and in books) is the discipline of Project Management and making them actionable for the team members. Some organizations dive into Six Sigma based on classroom training and expect all team members to follow the generally overworked Black Belt. Many Black Belts are trained in the Six Sigma tools and techniques but lack Project Management skills.
The Project Management Institute (PMI) in USA, PRINCE in the UK, and many other organizations have studied the best practices that must be followed to ensure project success. The PMI has published its Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) that outlines the processes necessary to ensure that the major stages of a project are successfully executed. They are: Project Initiation, Project Planning, Project Execution and Control, and Project Closeout. See 6D's Project Management Methodology.
In Six Sigma projects there is also the added need to clearly define the roles and responsibilities, and deliverables.
Can your Project teams benefit from a clear description of their tasks at their fingertips along with standardized templates and tools so that they can effectively complete their assignments? 6D Six Sigma Methodology built inside Microsoft Project and Project Catalyst makes all this possible and easy!