For many companies, the six sigmas process has been utilized as a way to improve the process quality of their operations. If you are unaware of what 6 sigma is, this article has been designed to give you a complete and accurate look at what it entails. You will also gain an understanding of 6 sigma certification and why it is important.
"Six Sigma - Making the impossible easy."
When it comes to 6 sigma, we find that this is the process that is used to produce work that is free from defects. To qualify as a six sigma company, it is required that there is a perfect score of at least 99.9997%. The 6 sigmas represent 6 standard deviations on a normal distribution. But the process does go deeper than simple defects.
Many companies have implemented procedures to utilize these standardized tools and statistics as a way to improve the overall effectiveness of the company's operations. The tools include analytical processes and problem solving techniques. With these processes in place, your company will achieve both performance increases as well as improved profits, with a reduction in waste as well.
To understand why this is so important, we should understand how companies normally operate. Many of the top companies in the world will operate at around 99% efficiency. While this number might seem high to you, it translates to about 10,000 defectives for every million units created. This can quickly add up over the course of time. Since a 6 sigma company will only produce 3.4 defective units in this same production line, this results in a savings of at least a quarter of a million dollars in savings each year. If a company achieves black belt status, this could become multiples of that.
While anyone can get into most clubs if they have enough money, 6 sigma is a little different. To become a member, you must achieve certain levels of training as well. There are three major belts that are obtainable in the process.
Green Belt: A person who receives this level of belt will likely be a project leader of the companies lean sigma program and be working towards the improvement of operations. To achieve this level of certification, an individual must pass an industry approved open book course.
Black Belt: This is a person that is a part of the leadership department in a company that is focused on operational improvements. These individuals will have gone through special training and will have the skills needed to lead their team. They will often have engineering or management degrees from a university. After reaching this point, the individual looking for the six sigmas black belt certification must complete the green belt course followed by the black belt requirements. The black belt requirements are much more in depth than those of the green belt.
Master Black Belt: This role is typically held by the program manager. Their long experience with the sigma process have prepared them to be the mentor for all those learning the how to use the 6 sigma process within their organization. They will ensure that each member of the team has earned the required certifications and will give guidance to all individuals that need it.
Champions: This individual is the business leader or manager who sponsors and requests a project to be performed within their department or authority. This key role is not necessarily certified.
Of course, with any program that requires personal improvement as well as structure, you will find that there are certain benefits that can accrue. These go beyond the pay raises and the prestige to your company. Working conditions and more improve as well. The successes of key practitioners of 6 sigma are very visible to upper management. This can lead to promotions.
For instance, you will be releasing higher quality products with almost no defects. Shareholders will place more financial interest in your stock as they understand that your products have a level of quality that they can be trusted. Customers in turn will continue to buy your product, with an understanding that they can expect high quality.
This results in a stronger presence in the market and in the media. Many companies are praised for their work with 6 sigma because it demands the best to be given by everyone involved. Overall there is a huge reputation boost that stems from certification, both for individuals and companies.
Those with a desire to get into 6 sigma, should take a moment to think about everything this powerful program can do for them, even outside of the workplace.
Certainly, it will increase your marketability with prospective employers down the road and give you a reputation of excellence, but you are able to take the concepts you learn and turn them into real life solutions as well.
Here's how it could help you on a deeper level:
When you receive the confirmation of your certification, you will have proof of your deeper ability level. Then with this credential, you will have the ability to take your understanding and begin to work on tasks that take your knowledge of the methodology and helps drive your company to success.
If you or your company are strongly considering the 6 sigma process, then consider all the financial and ethical benefits that are associated with it. By providing and striving for excellent service, reduced wastes and generally improved operations, your company will be operating at an enviable efficiency level.
This will cut down on unnecessary costs that less efficient companies have and build a higher level of trust with clients and stockholders, which will translate into higher profits.
Take the first steps and go through the green belt certification.
That alone will give you the basic concepts you need to understand that further involvement with six sigma is essential for your success.
Six Sigma Courses Information about training for the various belts or levels of expertise.
Six Sigma Tutorial Learn more about Six Sigma and its benefits to you and your company.