Monday, 16 April 2018

5 Lean Tools and Principles that Can Be Integrated with Six Sigma

Lean tools & Principles: Today, more organizations are trying to complement Lean's initiative with Six Sigma within the framework they already have. The combination of Lean's emphasis on turnaround time and Six Sigma that focus on process quality is believe to deliver results with great impact and targets can be achieve quickly.

Lean tools & Principles

With a structure approach, it is possible to combine Lean with the previously execute Six Sigma methods, as experience by companies list on Fortune 10.

Lean tools

There are several Lean tools and principles that can be integrate with Six Sigma, among others:

  1. Value Stream Mapping (VSM)

    In the Analyze phase (in the DMAIC project), a value stream map can be create to describe the flow of materials and information, and categorize activities into three segments: hold value ( value enabling ), add value ( value adding ), and do not add value ( non- value adding ). The focus of VSM is to identify and eliminate non-value add activities in every step of the process and reduce the tier time between each step. Value enabling activity can not be remove completely from the system. These activities can be divide into subcategories of value adding and non-value adding activities. What should be eliminate is non-value adding activity. The elimination will help to condense the process and provide the advantage of reduce variation. The VSM tool can also be use as part of the Kaizen cycle. Which is apply to the Analyze and Improve phases.

  2. Takt Time

    The takt is a German word meaning "beats".  Actually takt time is the average time require to complete a process to meet customer demand. For processes involving cycle time , such as manufacturing processes, cycle time can be found in the Measure phase. Then, in the Analyze phase, the cycle time can be compare with the existing service level agreement (SLA). If the mismatch has exceed the tolerance limit, improvements should be made to match the cycle time with takt time in the system.

  3. Cause-and-effect diagram / Fishbone)

    In the Analyze phase, the absence of proper statistical data makes it difficult to identify root causes. In this scenario, use the 5 Whys tool, which asks " Why ?" Multiple times, combine with the utilization of the cause-effect diagram tool. It can make it easier to dig root cause or root cause. Too 5 Whys can also help find process dynamics in areas that can be handle easily.

  4. Equity Expense

    In Japanese, Heijunka means a production system design in such a way that the flow of work can run consistently. This principle can be combine in the Design phase if root cause analysis perform in the Analyze phase identifies the bottleneck in the process. Load equalization can be done to push the pull system and prevent the process running by push and reduce bottleneck . Attempts to enforce load equalization in the system will also automatically reduce inventory.

  5. Poka-yoke ( Mistake Proofing )

    Poka-yoke is a Japanese term meaning "anti-error". This tool can be use to customize the steps of the process. When designing a new system with DMADV (Define, Measure, Analyze, Design, Verify). The combination of the Ishikawa diagram. Even the Pareto analysis can be use in the Analyze phase, to find key issues that disrupt the process. During the Improve and design phases, it is possible to eliminate the main causes of errors. It can be explore by upgrading or redesigning the system to avoid errors.

But to get this advantage, companies have to face a challenge.  Integrating Lean with Six Sigma without causing friction in the structure of one of the methods that have previously been running.

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