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Six Sigma is:

A Business Strategy: Using Six Sigma Methodology, a business can

strategize its plan of action and drive revenue increase, cost
reduction and process improvements in all parts of the organization.
A Vision: Six Sigma Methodology helps the Senior Management
create a vision to provide defect free, positive environment to the
A Benchmark: Six Sigma Methodology helps in improving process
metrics. Once the improved process metrics achieve stability; we can
use Six Sigma methodology again to improve the newly stabilized
process metrics.
A Goal: Using Six Sigma methodology, organizations can keep a
stringent goal for themselves and work towards achieving them
during the course of the year. Right use of the methodology often
leads these organizations to achieve these goals.
A Statistical Measure: Six Sigma is a data driven methodology.
Statistical Analysis is used to identify root-causes of the problem.
Additionally, Six Sigma methodology calculates the process
performance using its own unit known as Sigma unit.
A Robust Methodology: Six Sigma is the only methodology available
in the market today which is a documented methodology for
problem solving. If used in the right manner, Six Sigma improvements
are bullet-proof and they give high yielding returns.

When to use DMAIC?

DMAIC is used by a project team that is attempting to improve an existing

process. DMAIC provides structure because each phase of the process
contains tasks and tools that will lead the team to find an eventual solution.

The phases of DMAIC

The phases or stages of DMAIC include:

Define The project begins by creating a team charter to identify

team members, select the process the team will be improving and
clearly define the objective of the project. The project team will then
identify the CTQs to help measure the impact the problem has on the
customer. This phase is completed when the team creates a process
map that includes the processs inputs and outputs.
Measure This phase includes creating and executing a data
collection plan that provides reliable and significant data. The data
indicates how the process is performing and helps identify the villain
in the Six Sigma narrative variance. After this point, the project
teams efforts focus on eliminating or reducing variance as much as
Analyze Once process performance has been quantified, the
analyze phase helps identify possible causes of the problems. A sub-
process map can help identify the problems in the process and tools
such as ANOVA and regression analysis can help narrow these
problems to root causes. In this phase, the team is able to quantify
the financial benefit of solving the problem.
Improve Once the problems root cause is brought to light, the
improve phase focuses on finding a permanent solution to the
problem. This is where the project teams creativity comes into play in
finding an answer to a longstanding process problem. The team then
tests a proposed solution in a pilot program to test if the solution is
effective and financially viable.
Control In this phase, the project team documents the new solution
that they have created so that it can be passed on to process
owners. The project team then implements the solution according to
the timeline and key milestones they have developed. Once the
solution has been implemented, the project team monitors it for
several months and if it meets performance expectations turns it over
to the process owner.

DMAIC is a systematic, objective and fact-based system of problem solving.

The steps in the Six Sigma DMAIC methodology make process improvement
accessible and learnable even for those who are just becoming
acquainted with it.