Lean Six Sigma: How your company can benefit from it
As markets are becoming more and more competitive, managers need to find ways to make their processes more efficient and achieve better results.
The concept of Lean Six Sigma and the benefits it brings have arisen to help companies in this aspect. Keep reading this post to find out more about this topic!
What is Lean Six Sigma?
To better understand what Lean Six Sigma methodology is, first we need to understand the separate concepts of what is Lean and what is Six Sigma:
- Lean is a work philosophy in which the goal is to eliminate waste within a company and processes that don’t provide value to the customer;
- Six Sigma (or 6 Sigma) is a work methodology that deals with a group of best practices that seeks to optimize the performanceof processes, by eliminating defects and nonconformities – in line with the company’s specifications.
Lean Six Sigma is a combination of both philosophies which seeks to achieve excellence by optimizing processes and reducing waste. This concept has arisen due to the desire of companies to make their operations more agile and efficient.
How should you apply it to your company?
Lean Six Sigma can be applied to any company that‘s seeking to maximize its results and make its operations leaner and more precise. However, the first step in doing this is to be aware that you’ll have to break paradigms and you’ll need to be willing to do this.
The change begins with the mapping of your processes. In addition to evaluating your activity flow searching for errors and waste – to eliminate them – you also need to understand how a company creates value for its customers.
When the creation of value is defined, this is when you should identify which steps in each process don’t contribute to this goal and eliminate them, adjusting your work methods so that your operational performance doesn’t suffer.
The focus should be on improving processes and avoiding waste, which can be characterized as:
- idle time — long waits for raw materials, tools, information, etc.;
- excessive stocks;
- bottlenecks in transport, among other things.
In general, the goal is to implement this philosophy in your company and create conditions that will ensure that the correct materials are used, in an appropriate place, in an ideal quantity – always avoiding accumulations of material and losses and correcting process failures as they occur.
What are the benefits that it offers?
The adoption of the Lean Six Sigma methodology offers various advantages for your company in terms of production and your overall results. Among these benefits, we can mention:
- more efficient and effective processes;
- an increase in the quality of products and services;
- the elimination of waste and activities that don’t add value to the final result;
- a positive cultural change;
- a decrease in the variation of work methods – which makes it easier to track results;
- a reduction in costs;
- an increase in customer satisfaction.
Applying Lean Six Sigma takes time, but it’s relatively simple and it will bring your company closer to achieving excellence in its activities. In addition, with all the improvements made, it’s safe to say that it will also provide you with a competitive advantage.