What is Lean Six Sigma: Is It a Marriage Made in Heaven?

Lean Six Sigma is the combination of two important business improvement methodologies. This hybrid business process framework incorporates important attributes of Lean and Six Sigma.  While Lean methods focus on speed, Six Sigma aims at improving quality.  The result is a powerful business process improvement tool that can deliver quality products and projects in accelerated phase.  Companies deploying Lean Six Sigma to their business processes enjoy significant improvement in efficiency and productivity.

Lean Six Sigma business solution also considers reduction of production costs.  Business defects are addressed by Six Sigma tools which aim to achieve near-perfect deliveries of products and services.  On the other hand, the Lean system strives to realize zero waste in every process of the business.  Wastes and defects will cost so much and could adversely affect company financials. Elimination of these factors in the business process and product deliveries can ultimately reduce business process expenses.

The two methodologies when combined can perfectly complement each other.  One reinforces the other in such a way that the weaknesses of each method are removed.  Specifically, if Lean method concerns itself with fast tracking business processes it could not ensure the quality of deliverables.  This problem will be resolved by the Six Sigma methodology because the system focuses on improving quality.  If speed and quality is combined and process wastes and defects are eliminated, the end result could be faster return on investment because of increasing profitability.  That is why more companies are combining Lean and Six Sigma to optimize their business and production process.

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