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How to gather data to make six sigma decisions

Let's imagine that you work for a company that manufactures a product.You may be the owner, the manager, or just a regular, but valuable, employee.As a holder of any of these positions, you will need to make decisions based on your desire to improve your company and make it more profitable.One way to do this is to learn and follow the six sigma.Another necessary part of this is to gather data about what your customers are looking for in a product.This article will discuss exactly what six sigma is and how to gather this data to make six sigma decisions.

First, what is six sigma?Since you may not be an expert of six sigma, let us review.Six sigma was created by Motorola and is a system of practices to improve your company and eliminate defects.By defects, we mean anything outside of customer specifications, or the parts of a product or service that is not part of the intended population.A defect could be a product that you marketed to the public, thinking that it would do well, and then for some reason did not sell.

Six sigma symbolizes a striving for perfection in a company.It is a way to describe how your company's processes are performing.The six key concepts are as follows:

1. Critical to quality: these are the characteristics that are the most important to a customer-a product's durability, appearance, usefulness, etc.
2. Beware of defects: this is failing to deliver what the customer wants.It is your job to discover what exactly the customer wants and how to get it to them.
3. Process capability: this is what your process can deliver to the customer, in a timely, affordable manner.
4. Variation: what the customer sees and feels may change very rapidly.You must be ready for sudden and possible radical changes in the market and in your company.
5. Stable operations: you want your company to produce consistent, predictable processes to improve upon what the customer wants
6. Design for six sigma: scheming to meet customer needs and process capability

Now that you know what six sigma is, let's talk about some ways to gather data.Because without efficient data collection you and your company won't have a product to market or company to improve upon using the six sigma.

When gathering data for your company, it is important to listen to the voice of the customer.Voice of the customer is a term used in business to describe the process of finding and then obtaining a customer's requirements.A business discovers what this is by doing surveys, focus groups, and interviews of people just like you and me.

Surveys are a good option for data collection because they are fairly simple to create, administer, and analyze.And they don't take much time to do, so people may be likely to participate on them.Surveys can provide useful, interesting information about what the consumers want.However, surveys do have their downfalls.People may not tell the exact truth on a survey because they think that they should say what you (the administrator) want to hear.

Focus groups or interview can be good options because you get one-on-one time with people and can ask them exactly what they think about a product idea.They are a bit more time consuming than surveys, but they also yield more accurate results.Once again, people may not tell you the exact truth when asked their opinion.But in general, people may be more likely to express their opinion in such a circumstance.

The last option is to examine complaint logs or databases about your products.This method is fairly fool proof-as in people are very likely to tell the truth about the product.They are quite accurate.It may, however, be difficult to find the very specific information you're looking for.The best option is probably to use all three methods of data collection.

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