All 13 entries tagged B2

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January 14, 2013

VSM implementation

as already known VSM is a tool used to eliminate non-value adding activities. Nevertheless, there are some activities that cannot be eliminated, an example can be sitting and monitoring the operation of a device waiting for something wrong to happrn. nother example related to engineering is safety tasks where checking a job that is completed more than once which is seemed on a vsm as non value adding.

My point of view is that a vsm should implemented as suitable for the work nature. even if there is necessary waste there is always non needed waste which can be eliminated to deliver a more efficient process. created VSM will help to reflect the bigger picture of the system and helps each employee to know his/her role in the system. an issue that i found at work is that some employees are not aware of others dependence on there taks to be able to carry a following task. the dissemination of the VSM will help resolve this issue to create a faster and more efficient process.

Six Sigma adoption

six sigma after proved by Motorola to reduce defects, by GE to reduce cost and by Samsung to increase customer satisfaction has demonstrated that it can be used for any of the three reasons. From My point of view, three of them can be gained if the initiative was linked to the business strategy, the customer and the supplier. Moreover, prioritising project selection can help in focusing on customers rather than drifting towards reducing cost which can drive quality down.

When i go back to my job, i know that few processes can benefit from a six sigma improvement. by ranking my priorities towards improving customer satisfaction first, followed by reducing cost and variation i can lead improvement that will maximise the department gain with minimal cost required to execute the improvement.

January 09, 2013

linking six sigma

six sigma success is directly tied to the critical success factors. this is important as some companies have struggled in making lot out of it. there are few CFS that are exclusive to six sigma among other improvement initiatives which are linking six sigma to business strategy, customer needs, human resources and suppliers. understanding six sigma tools and techniques and using project management skills are also value adding to the approach.

considering this CSF will ensure customer focus, business oriented and knowledge reliance. linking these factors will avoid cutting cost without meeting customer needs or working towards customers demand without considering supplier capability. this is clear to some extent but what if the customer was not directly related to the process like maintenance field. should the voice of the customer be ruled by the voice of the business. the only sensible approach is to translate broad customers needs to business requirements that should b built into the process. This can be done by deriving VOC and using a QFD matrix to link the customer requirement to business drivers. The linked business drivers can then be linked to the improvement project. In other words, in few industries customer need are linked to six sigma project via a QFD matrix linking customer needs to project related business drivers.

January 07, 2013

Lean Six Sigma projects

The compatibility of lean and six sigma depends on the integration approach as discussed in the previous entry. Three basic steps to do that what each approach has exclusively which the most important point, what do they both do in different ways which should be used based on the improvement specific needs and circimstances and finally if they pull in different directions the project will ditermin where to go e.g. if

In my practice to use and understand lean six sigma i found out that six sigma implementation is layed out better in terms of project management tools. If i had to carry out a lean improvement it will be by using the DMAIC cycle even if no six sigma or spc tools and techniques were needed. This will allow carrying a more organized improvement project. Moreover, both lean and six sigma can be carried out to reduce the manufacturing cost of a product. However, each does it in a different way. The selection of approach will be determined by the case requirements e.g. if defects or variation is the problem then it is more sensible to choose six sigma, but if the higher cost was due to inventory or process flow then lean tools like JIT or VSM would be more effective. Nevertheless, i get confused when they pull in opposite drections. for this topiic another blog will be added

January 04, 2013

Lean Six Sigma

lean six sigma is an improvement methodology combining two approaches together. There is some suspicion about how compatible are they, but the true question is does it matter? There is no perfect fit in social science, everything is integrated to achieve higher potential.

The important aspect of this as many authors describe is, what is the best integration approach to achieve higher potential than any in isolation. There is no doubt that one approach will dominate, specifically six sigma as it provides a project platform with sufficient management means. Nevertheless, lean can compensate in understanding the customer needs and extending the six sigma "toolbox".

on a project basis lean tools and techniques can help me in creating a more effective improvement project when carrying out a six sigma project. For example when we carried out the airplane assembly exercise at class we could have used 5S to have a tidier working environment and we couldve improved the process flow to ensure that we meet the required production cycle time.

December 29, 2012

project charter

the project charter in six sigma project is a document that provides an overview of the improvement project. It is a part of the define phase as it supports defining the desired achievements, what resources would be available and the key players etc.

This is an important document as it helps in giving a clear understanding of the overview. Understanding the improvement can be by knowing which part of the business to improve but when completing a project charter it will help in identifying gaps in the bigger picture such as does the whole department require improvement or is it a single unit, what kind of resources does the project sponsor agree on lending and so on.

This helped me to notice that there are some gaps in my understanding of a certain improvement project. Moreover, i felt that it would be more useful to complete the project charter along with the steering team to have a clear and mutual understanding of what is supposed to happen during the improvement cycle.

December 28, 2012

Lean principles

Lean principle is a continuous improvement methodology which is created by Toyota and was known as Toyota Production System. The aim of this initiative was to meet and please the customer demands.

This approach is very useful as the available tools and techniques do not require very high intellectual capability to understand and use. Moreover, it cuts cost usually without the need to spend more. One of the technique is value stream mapping.

when i used to work on night shifts i noticed that i had to do more to achieve less due to spare parts location, missing or unclear information, etc. for example when doing the daily check on four machines i would need to walk upstairs and down 4 times, once for each. Using VSM it would be more efficient to finish upstairs of the four at once and then down stairs, this will eliminate the waste of walking up and down three times.

December 25, 2012

Six Sigma approach

six sigma approach for process improvement is split into two, improvement project and improvement initiative. This draws a question which is better. looking back to history the founders and famous users of six sigma had it implemented as an initiative which resulted in a huge cost saving and product quality improvement. However, hundreds of case studies proved that six sigma doesn't have to be an initiative to work and initiatives them selves are benefiting from the improvement projects. Nevertheless, initiatives are very helpful in supporting the project for success as management role is one of the most important critical success factor. The confusing point is that all continuous improvement initiatives share some of the basic CSFs.

From a realistic point of view, six sigma is not always the answer which was one of the reasons to integrate lean and six sigma, which is another dilemma on its own. The targeted point is that it is very helpful to have a CI initiative to have the whole team on board but not exclusively a six sigma improvement initiative. this allows the use of multiple improvement techniques based on the best fit for use. this will secure the basic CSF like management commitment, support, etc. the rest of the exclusive CSFs can be integrated within the project it self.

My improvement project is a six sigma project which is in collaboration with a performance development department. Their approach using multiple techniques including most frequently lean six sigma that being flexible and creative can overcome the limitations imposed by an exclusive approach. This will help me to adapt with having six sigma as one technique and others are not out of my comfort zone but an opportunity to be limitless.

November 26, 2012


Design of Experiment is simply a tool used to identify the best settings of variable factors. It is done by looking at the critical factors and there interactions to evaluate robustness. Most common one is Taguchi orthogonal array.

This is very important as it reduces the number of experiments from full factorial which can be 128 in 7 factors to 8. This saves alot of money and time. Moreover, it delivers a result within 10% of the optimal design.

I can use DOE at work in experimenting the optimum setting the best parameters of the flight simulator qualification test guide QTG. This will result in a more precise testing of the simulator current performance to ensure more realistic flight training.

November 22, 2012

improvement projects

six sigma projects are very well structured using the DMAIC cycle. However, a common practise is to skip steps and jump to conclusions. The facilitator role is to ensure sequence of events. The most common issue is to skip the analysis step. In my view, this happens as people start to see their process clearer than ever and ideas start to pop up. Skipping the analyse step usually ends with a disappointing improvement as they are spontaneous ideas. This an example of Deming's theory of knowledge. There is no substitute for knowledge of the process regardless of how hard you work to improve. a good solution is to note ideas that are generated during the cycle and screen them after completing the analysis, this will create a win win situation

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Most recent comments

  • Good point, you dont have to consider it while using the decision tree as the available data is limi… by Ahmed Alali on this entry
  • Good point Bu Salim. However, i failed to mention that a decision objective is linked to the busines… by Ahmed Alali on this entry
  • I do agree with you Ahmed that certain modification enhance GA performance, however, even if someone… by Waddah Alharthi on this entry
  • as u said, the time scaling and sentivity need to be taken into account… i agree but do u think in… by Tzu-i Yang on this entry
  • i agree with u … choosing tools is not easy… we might fall into trap info….it was whyi decisio… by Tzu-i Yang on this entry

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