All you need to know about Lean Six Sigma
Since its inception, Six Sigma has garnered the reputation of becoming one of the most effective quality management mechanisms across organizations in the world. Originated in the manufacturing sector, Six Sigma also finds its applications in other industry verticals involving transactional and service businesses like banking, software development, and healthcare. The latest iteration of the given methodology has added Lean management principles to the concepts of Six Sigma. As a result, Lean Six Sigma is obtained. In this post, we will help you know all about Lean Six Sigma and its applications in the modern organizational structure.
What is Lean Six Sigma?
It is a popular new approach in the concept of quality management across organizations. The all-new approach involving process improvement aims at combining the best of both Lean as well as Six Sigma frameworks through the reduction of variation & waste while focusing on the unique needs of the end customers.
Lean Six Sigma can be defined as a methodology associated with reducing variation while detecting flaws in the given process. It also helps in the prevention of flaws or errors. Six Sigma recently blended with the Lean management principles for the purpose of improving the overall efficiency while eliminating waste with the help of statistical and data-driven approach.
Six Sigma was formalized during the 1980s to be used in the manufacturing sector. Since then, Six Sigma has been leveraging high-end quality improvement mechanisms from the last 60 years –including Total Quality Management. During the early 2000s, Lean got added to Six Sigma to obtain Lean Six Sigma. With the all-new approach, leading industries across the world including manufacturing, IT, military, healthcare, and finance look forward to improving the day-to-day processes.
Important Elements of Lean Six Sigma
Some of the essential elements or principles of Lean Six Sigma can be summed up as:
- Paying attention to the unique requirements of the customers
- Reducing variation
- Eliminating activities and wastes that are not adding any value
- Focusing on implementing simple processes
- Understanding the unique value stream –steps responsible for creating the deliverable
- Continuing the improvement of the given value stream
- Making decisions on the basis of data, and not assumptions
- Including employees in the respective improvement efforts while providing them with necessary tools for finding relevant solutions
History of Lean Six Sigma
Six Sigma boasts its glorious roots in the processes of statistical process control during the early 20th century. The process derives its name from the standard deviation term –referred to as ‘sigma.’ The level six sigma methodologies were selected by Motorola to achieve its respective quality goals during the 1980s. Soon, practices involving Six Sigma became prevalent in other companies or industries while garnering its reputation of being a leading cost-effective mechanism.
Lean traces its roots back to the advent of the TPS (Toyota Production System) along with JIT (Just In Time) production. The Lean Management methodology got developed after World War II in Japan.
Top Benefits of Lean Six Sigma
The concept of Six Sigma commenced in the manufacturing sector. However, it soon became known that the method was capable of providing great value beyond the manufacturing processes. By including relevant Lean Management principles, Lean Six Sigma soon became a universally-accepted methodology for not only the manufacturing sector, but also for the transactional & service industries out there.
Some of the top benefits of Lean Six Sigma to the companies include:
The respective financial benefits in association with the implementation of the Lean Six Sigma principles tend to be well-documented. Leading companies like Motorola, GE, Honeywell, and others keep posting interesting numbers for several decades on the basis of the successful Lean Six Sigma projects.
On financial grounds, when you would put an employee to in-depth Lean Six Sigma learning & training, then it is estimated that you can end up saving at least £50K. At the same time, the companies out there could be confident that the savings are going to be real.
Companies who look forward to deploying Lean Six Sigma can observe strategic benefits as well in the organizational structure. This can be effectively achieved by taking the trained Green or Black Belt employee and asking him or her to complete the projects that might appear to be of strategic importance. Such projects might involve the task of solving some major problems in the given business.
As Green & Black Belt employees through the Lean Six Sigma mechanism are given ample training to analyze data, such employees can provide assistance to the company in understanding the current problems, their overall scale, and how to solve the same. Based on the same, you can reassess or come up with a proper strategy for your business.
#People Development Benefits
A majority of the employees who are given proper training in Lean Six Sigma and achieve the reputed Green & Black Belts are known to achieve major benefits for the organization. Such employees gain great confidence. Moreover, when they interact with the available data, it enables them to suggest new ideas while solving problems. The result of the given confidence achieved by the respective Green & Black Belt employees through Lean Six Sigma training is that they wish to achieve affirmative changes in the organization.
When they tend to exercise their overall influence around the business, it allows them to affect others around them as well. In this way, the organization can look forward to implementing the change while developing & growing at the same time.
While there are several benefits of implementing the Lean Six Sigma methodology for organizations, there are potential points of advantages for individuals as well. Some of the important points are:
- Achieving a new, clear way of approaching & dealing with problems
- Career advancement for those who receive certification & training with Lean Six Sigma
- Improved payscale for those having Lean Six Sigma certification
- Improved quality of work and confidence
Make the most of the innovative Lean Six Sigma methodology to boost your organization.