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When not to use six-sigma

Businesses that do not have enough money and time to use for six-sigma will not benefit from it. In addition, six-sigma requires full commitment from all employees in the business. Six-sigma can be beneficial for companies looking for a long-term investment.

Six-Sigma- What is it?

Six-Sigma is a way for companies to strive for perfection. The word sigma actually means how far the product is from perfection. The main goal is to eliminate defects, or mistakes in whatever product you are manufacturing. It is to obtain knowledge on how to do things better, faster and at a lower cost. Six-sigma can be used for anything related to cost, timeliness, and quality of results. For example, a business will have certain standards to meet in order to have a product work to be able to sell. Six-sigma is a way to measure whether the standards of quality for the product are met. To achieve six-sigma, a company cannot have more than 3.4 defects per million opportunities. There are certain people who are trained to help businesses use six-sigma. These people are called Six Sigma Green Belts, Black Belts, and Master Black Belts. A Black Belt is simply someone who is very knowledgeable in the products and services of a business that can train the employees on how to eliminate mistakes, which in turn helps the business succeed.

When is it beneficial to use six-sigma?

Businesses that can afford to invest a lot of money to train the employees extensively can benefit using the six-sigma approach. It takes money to save money according to this idea. It appears that big businesses benefit from using the six sigma strategy. For example, Motorola, Allied Signal, GE and Honeywell all used it, and the investments made in six-sigma were worth it in the end. It is interesting to note that Motorola used six sigma from 1986 - 2001 and saved 4.5 of overall revenue. For a business that is looking for a long-term investment, six-sigma is the solution.

When is it not beneficial to use six-sigma?

Using six-sigma effectively takes a lot of time, money and 100% commitment from each employee. Businesses that do not have too much time will not benefit from six-sigma. To have a black belt do training with the company, it usually takes between 4-6 months. In a large company, for example, decisions will take longer, which means more money spent, and if the business doesn't have money, six-sigma won't work.

Six-sigma can be very expensive. To hire 1 black belt to do training in the company costs approximately $15,000-$25,000. In addition, for each employee to get training, it costs on average $2000/day. In small businesses it will naturally cost more to educate and train employees, because it is more cost effective to buy in bulk. In addition, the amount of money saved in small businesses by using six-sigma is low compared to the amount of money spent on it.Basically, it takes money to save money with six-sigma, but if you don't have money to spend in the beginning stages of a company, six-sigma training is not an option. It isn't necessarily better to spend a lot of money hiring a Six Sigma Black Belt to help the business succeed. Other options may be to get ideas from employees within in the business, or research cost effective ways to improve a company. Someone in the business may be able to figure out ways to eliminate mistakes, to improve the quality of results.

Lastly, if even a few people out of your entire business aren't fully supportive in using six-sigma, it will be wasting everyone's time and money. Everyone's actions need to be tied together in order for the six-sigma project to work effectively.

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