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Lean Six Sigma

clip71731932.jpgThe manufacturing industry is filled with so many different processes that are used to reduce or eliminate waste. Lean Six Sigma is one of the most popular forms of reducing waste and controlling your inventory so you aren't wasting time and money.

What is lean manufacturing and how do you combine it with Six Sigma? Lean manufacturing focuses on the elimination of waste while Six sigma focuses on reducing errors down to 3.4 defects per million products produced.When you combine the two processes, you will eliminate waste and streamline the processes so they can flow better.

Reducing defects comes down to assigning groups of employees to different parts of the manufacturing process. This way you can sort through the products and when a defect arises, you will pinpoint if the defect is a result of a person or a machine. Focusing on having "sets" of employees to work on the various areas gives you a greater chance to speed up efficiency and increase the overall performance of your company.

What type of problems are you currently having within your company? Are there ways you can reduce or eliminate these problems now? Focusing on the problem can take up a lot of time as you need to focus on what is causing the problem to find the solution. Quite often the problem is deeper than just a small defect and it can be caused from a whole slew of things that are wrong with the manufacturing process.

Any company can use Lean Six Sigma, it doesn't just need to be manufacturing plants. You want to get the lowest defect ratio possible and the only way to do this is to change the entire mindset of the company. Lean Six sigma will impact more than just your manufacturing line, it also impacts your customer service department. Everyone at the company plays a role in the way in which a product is ordered to the way it is produced.Sometimes the customer service department that places the order is at fault for the defect because of poor handwriting or communication with the service department.

Wasted time by employees is a big problem. Lean Six Sigma helps you to see where your employees are wasting time so you can get rid of it. How long does it take for an employee to take an order and submit it to the service center and how long does it take for the service center to fulfill the order? Wasted time adds up quickly and you need to check on the different individuals involved in the various steps in order to reduce wasted time.

Changing your communication system can save a lot of time for your company. Focus on how your employees talk to one another by implementing an online system and other devices that help to communicate the information quickly and in a clear and precise manner.

Purchasing new equipment may be necessary in order for your company to eliminate waste or reduce defects. Older and outdated models can cause problems and they often lead to the build-up of wasted time by the employees as they need to focus on trying to compensate for the slow machines or for the waste the machine produces. Proper maintenance of the machinery ahead of time helps to prevent waste from occurring in the first place and this will allow you to save a lot of money as you won't have defects and other issues.

Lean Six Sigma is a great way to improve your business and to increase customer satisfaction. Have patience as it make take a few months for proper implementation of Lean Six Sigma to work.

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