Six Sigma Quality Research Project Team
ASQ Annual Quality Congress
May 20, 2003
2:00 p.m. to 3:15 p.m.
Jim Buckman, University of Minnesota
Alan Leeds, Y-Change
Bob King, Co-Chair GOAL/QPC, firstname.lastname@example.org
Ivy Slattery Salsbury, Slattery & Associates
Larry Smith, Co-Chair, Ford Motor Company
Chih-Han Wang, Ph.D., Chinese Society for Quaity
Greg Watson, Co-Chair, ASQ
- Review research project background – Bob King
- Brainstorm research design – Participants
- Next Steps – Bob King
FOCUS QUESTIONS AND KEY IDEAS
What is the focus of this Six Sigma quality project?
- Conduct a debrief of the last 15 years of Six Sigma activities – what works and what does not work.
- Identify future applications of Six Sigma
- Identify the economic benefits of Six Sigma
- Identify key questions for future discussion
- Identify payback by organization and industry comparison
- Looking for long-term systems approach (from product to process to customers getting the benefits)
- Identify a customer dashboard – those reports that are actionable and show cause and effect (tie these to economic indicators)
- Use the principles of TRIZ to study the evolution of Six Sigma as a super-system and use the laws of evolution to predict the coming evolution of the system
- Implication wheel analysis for implementing Six Sigma.
- Use of financial measures with capability studies to determine cause/effect and identify improvement opportunities
- Create a Six Sigma action plan and prototype studies – that should provide ideas about what needs to be done next.
- Customer survey design (Harvard, Georgia, Wisconsin, etc.)
- Needs assessment through an internet-based survey of Six Sigma Forum members (ask Gordon Black for help).
- Capability analysis and finance (Wharton, Rochester, etc.)
- Investigate parallel characteristics with other quality systems/methods
- Create a three-to-five year research plan that describes the pathway for research on the subject. Sloan Foundation, NSF, (take plan and ask for likelihood of support in year two or three).
What entails the "Debrief"?
- The debrief should include three (3) phases:
1. Benchmark Six Sigma practice (Identify metrics, identify best practice)
2. Benchmark financials (Establish cost/benefit metrics, identify trends of best practice)
3. Perform a correlation study between best practice activities and financials (do this in an anonymous way like Canada’s ministry of trade industry performance survey). This should be done using a "Customer Dashboard" approach.
What questions should the research answer?
- Who is our customer? (Identify attributes for customer needs)
- What are the strategic elements of Six Sigma?
- Six Sigma needs to be defined and standardized
- Identify measures of "success" and "failure"
- What is the growth of learning in Six Sigma?
- What is the REAL meaning of Six Sigma green belt training and how should they be trained? (Clarify and capture green belt issues and other lessons learned)
- Identify training issues
- How many black belts do you need?
- How (ideally) should six sigma be deployed? (By industry and size of the organization)
- Are there cultural distinctions that make a difference in how to deploy Six Sigma? (Identify cultural issues)
- How does this apply to small companies, healthcare, government organizations?
- How is a company best engaged in starting Six Sigma? (Juran model on growth of Six Sigma).
- How can Six Sigma be enhanced? What is the operational definition of DFSS? Creativity tools, hoshin, QFD, TRIZ, axiomatic design
- Conduct several studies simultaneously?
Who should be involved in the project?
- Companies who have implemented Six Sigma programs/activities (e.g. Samsung)
- Universities focusing on quality research (e.g. Juran Institute, University of Minnesota)
- National foundations
- Link to JUSE and the TQC-Six Sigma specification extension (can we engage the Toshiba, Sony, Samsung, etc.).
- Six Sigma providers (?)
What are the key issues related to the Six Sigma research project?
- Need to address board and executive levels and their involvement, support, and knowledge of six sigma
- Customer survey design is inherently wrong (averages are used, sampling methodology issues)
- If a company is spending $1 million a year on Six Sigma, then it may be worth $25-30K to make this expenditure much more efficient.
- Prepare for approaching companies – how to get them to participate
- Six sigma often viewed as an "American thing" by other countries
- Current Quality Body of Knowledge (Q-BOK) has a technical/manufacturing feel vs. business/services (lack of business issues and service quality and design methods).
- Need to address ASQ politics – must have project verification
- Things to avoid include a loose definition of the project, a broad scope, and no strict responsibility/accountability
- "Seed money"
- All attendees will be given personal access Ids and passwords to the ASQ Worldwide Research Program website.
- Meeting Minutes will be placed on the website under the Six Sigma project site.
- Discussion questions will be made available on the website for further project design definition.