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Six sigma - Essay Example

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Six Sigma Introduction Six Sigma is a business management strategy that was developed by Motorola USA in the late 1980s. This strategy aims to improve the quality of products and outputs by determining and eliminating various causes of errors, as well as minimizing variability in the manufacturing and business processes (Schroeder & Harry, 2006)…
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Download file to see previous pages Today, Six Sigma is widely used in numerous organizations throughout the world specifically in business areas such as Business, Telecommunication, Aviation, Pharmaceutical, and so on. The term Six Sigma originated from manufacturing terms related to the statistical modeling of the manufacturing process. A Sigma rating describes the quality of a manufacturing process. This rating is based on the percentage of defect-free products generated. More importantly, a Six Sigma process is expected to yield 99.99966% of products without any defects, which means there is only an average of 3.4 defects for every million items created. Motorola aims to achieve these high quality outputs in all of its manufacturing processes through the implementation of Six Sigma (Pande & Holpp, 2002). The following sections shall discuss Six Sigma in greater detail, along with how Six Sigma is applied in the aviation industry. Six Sigma History In 1986, Motorola USA was criticized by its senior executive Art Sundry due to the company’s poor performance and bad output quality (Schroeder & Harry, 2006). This pushed the company to understand the correlation of improving the product quality and decreasing production costs. The belief at the time was that increasing the product quality entails higher production expenses. ...
In 2006, Motorola reported to have saved over $17 billion since it implemented Six Sigma in its manufacturing and business processes. Terminology Six Sigma is a term that originated from a the statistical model of process capability studies. The model referred to the ability of the manufacturing processes to generate outputs at high volumes within the set standards. All the Six Sigma projects are expected to produce only 3.4 defects for every million opportunities, which means a Six Sigma process has a rate of producing 99.99966% of defect-free products. A Six Sigma defect is defined as any error outside the customer specifications. Moreover, a Six Sigma opportunity is the total number of chances for a defect to occur. A Six Sigma calculator is used to compute for the process sigma (Pyzdek & Keller, 2009). Influences and Characteristics Six Sigma is mainly influenced by six decades of quality improvement methodologies, which include Zero Defects, Quality Control and Total Quality Management. The Six Sigma doctrine states that: manufacturing and business processes have variables that can be measured, analyzed, improved, and controlled; continuous effort to attain stable process results are essential to a successful business; and quality improvement may be sustained through the commitment of the whole organization, specifically the higher management. Furthermore, Six Sigma has its new and unique characteristics including: strong emphasis on passionate management leadership and support; every Six Sigma project entails a clear focus on attaining measurable and quantifiable financial results; special workforce infrastructure of “Champions,” “Master Black Belts,” “Black Belts,” “Green Belts”, and so on; and decisions are made based on factual and ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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