Successes of Six Sigma in different organizations
The principal aim for various organizations to use Six Sigma is that it serves the purpose of identifying process inefficiencies and application of strategic approaches. The strategic tools are aimed at eliminating defects through the reduction of process variation. Some of the organizations which use Six Sigma obtain various benefits such as enhancing shareholders’ value, increasing their profits, and reducing unnecessary waste. Also, firms find it appropriate to utilize the Six Sigma concepts because they assist in improving their employee productivity. In this case, as illustrated by Jacobs, Swink, and Linderman (2015), Six Sigma is used as an approach of training the employees, and this is beneficial in that it increases their morale and productivity. The firm is an American multinational corporation which deals with the designing, manufacturing, and selling of satellites, airlines, rotorcraft, and rockets.
As noted by Pyzdek & Keller (2014), based on its numerous manufacturing and other tasks, the firm embraces the need to utilize Six Sigma concepts in its activities. The necessity to apply Six Sigma is also triggered by the fact that the company operates on a worldwide basis and has a significant number of approximately 141,300 employees. Also, use of Six Sigma by Boeing Company aligns with the nature of its operations since the multinational company has numerous subsidiaries in various countries. As a flight provider, before the application of the Six Sigma methodology, Boeing noted that delays in flights led to various problems especially when the clients had to connect their flights to different destinations (Pyzdek & Keller, 2014). Online Shopping Firm (Amazon) As among the online shopping organizations which operate worldwide, Amazon utilizes Six Sigma in its activities.
When the firm was founded in 1994, it did not immediately start using Six Sigma to manage its operations in cloud computing and electronic commerce tasks. As a result of applying Six Sigma, Amazon was able to become the most prominent Internet retailer in the world and among the largest regarding ownership of total assets. It also finds it necessary to use Six Sigma because it operates different subsidiaries. Since Six Sigma applies a data-driven philosophy, it is used at Amazon as a guideline to keep various forms of organizational defects in check and within formulated specification limits (Brue, 2015). The research will also evaluate the Amazon’s operations management teams and how they use Six Sigma to focus on efficiency maximization to match or exceed the customer expectations.
It will also determine the use of Six Sigma in Amazon’s warehouses to as a mark of near-unprecedented service level in the company’s retail platform. The research will also evaluate how the Amazon’s distribution center managers utilize Six Sigma to facilitate continuous improvement regarding workflow. Notably, Amazon’s distribution center managers in Australia and other regions have in the past applied Six Sigma in their order processing activities. In this context, the research also targets Amazon’s top executive management to understand how Six Sigma has efficiently been used in upgrading the business. The analysis will illustrate how employees are trained to apply Six Sigma for the achievement of organizational objectives and maximization of the shareholders’ value. Data will also determine how the operations department uses Six Sigma to facilitate developments in the workshops and seminars to obtain positive outcomes and anchor improvement implication in the organization.
It will also be aimed at understanding the existing exceptional understanding and knowledge of the Six Sigma approach incorporated within the Maersk Improvement Model. Research would be beneficial because it will evaluate the need for strong interpersonal skills when interacting and piloting the state's frameworks and processes. It will also gauge the interpersonal skills required when implementing Six Sigma strategies with other people in Maersk’s different departments. to ensure that it responds positively to environmental concerns in the various operating regions. The application of Six Sigma is seen as the foundation for success at Caterpillar Inc. This strategy is depicted as the corporation’s vital component because it assists in delivering positive results through using Six Sigma processes as well as resources.
Besides, the use of Six Sigma has resulted in the development of Caterpillar’s reputation being established on the production of quality products which enable it to achieve a competitive advantage. It also succeeds in how it applies Six Sigma in its production departments. It would also focus on how Six Sigma involves the company’s dealers and customers towards enhancing quality and reliability. It is also understood that Caterpillar Inc. engages in the negotiation of labor contracts. In this context, the research would identify the role of Six Sigma in negotiations involving labor contracts and labor relations. In addition to this, research aims at revealing how Six Sigma is used in management the just-in-time (JIT) control systems, automation in its factories, computerizing and networking of machine equipment in different assembly lines, and enhancing flexibility on manufacturing systems.
Also, before the adoption of Six Sigma, Dell faced the challenge of poor customer service. Based on the above discussion above the successes and challenges of Dell in the absence and presence of Six Sigma, research would be vital. Research would aim at identifying how the HR department used Six Sigma to improve customer service in the firm. It would also obtain information about how Six Sigma was used to enhance the process of providing feedback to Dell’s customer from various parts of the world. The research would also target Dell’s operations department. The CSFs are necessary for the efficiency of the Six Sigma methodologies and concepts. Focus on top management commitment Based on the critical success factors, organizations believe that these elements are crucial in ensuring that the current state of Six Sigma performance is enhanced.
Hence, it is vital to understand the different CSFs that organizations need to embrace. For example, organizations should focus on top management commitment to improving the success of the Six Sigma methodologies and their corresponding applications. Notably, top management commitment should take the perspective of “top-down” rather than be triggered by a specific department or from the ground. In various cases, substantial change to a firm’s both infrastructure and structure should take place. At this moment, organizations believe that culture change is one of the CSFs and should be implemented to deal with challenges which face Six Sigma methodologies regarding cultural consideration (Rosemann & vom Brocke, 2015). The rationale for this recommendation for cultural change is that cultural change when applying Six Sigma would necessitate clarity in communication.
It also promotes motivation for the internal stakeholders of the manufacturing firms to overcome resistance and educate one another about the positive implications of Six Sigma. Hence, the cultural change common belief about the triggers of success in Six Sigma is valid. Modern organizations recognize this crucial success factor since they understand that there are difficulties when determining what to measure. Hence, before and after beginning Six Sigma initiatives, organizations hold that it is appropriate to incorporate clear ideas and agreements on the performance metrics to be applied. Understanding work processes Currently, manufacturing firms and other organizations applying the 6 Sigma methodologies hold that it is understanding work processes within their firms is a critical success factor. This is relevant because the level of effort that manufacturing firms put when evaluating its work processes is essential.
In the contemporary workplace, firms believe that utilizing much of their time and effort in structuring approaches to evaluate the methods contributes towards the success of the 6 Sigma. Comparable Firms in Brisbane without Six Sigma Austrailers Queensland The selected comparable firm is a Brisbane-based family managed the company. Austrailers Queensland deals with the manufacturing of high-quality trailers. The rationale for choosing this firm is because it is among the best high-quality trailer manufacturing organizations in Brisbane and Australia. The firm is effectively comparable to other manufacturing firms which use Six Sigma. This is because Austrailers Queensland does not apply Six Sigma concepts and methodologies in its operations (Austrailers Queensland, n. Armstrong Engineering As a firm to be used in comparison with other firms using Six Sigma in their activities, Armstrong Engineering is a manufacturing firm in North Brisbane.
The firm concentrates on the manufacturing of bitumen road equipment without the use of Six Sigma concepts. This manufacturing firm takes pride in the application of local expertize to enhance its organizational, professional focus (Armstrong Engineering, n. d. Hence, comparing it with other firms would generate information about how Armstrong Engineering succeeds in the provision of bitumen sealing equipment in the absence of Six Sigma methodologies. The potential improvements include the reduction in the cost of supplying the bitumen manufacturing equipment to the different firms, increasing positive client experiences, producing a variety of bitumen manufacturing equipment, and improving the quality of its products. Australian Innovative Systems Pty Ltd. The other comparable selected manufacturing firm in Brisbane is Australian Innovative Systems Pty Ltd.
Even though it does not employ Six Sigma in its activities, Australian Innovative Systems Pty Ltd. is considered as an advanced and convenient manufacturer of swimming pool chlorinator and salt water chlorine generators (Australian Innovative Systems, n. It would also assist in obtaining the necessary steps which can be taken to mitigate against the challenges. Bendtech Since its formation in 1992, Bendtech has never used Six Sigma concepts in managing its manufacturing operations. The firm engages in the production of Australian engineered solutions for mobility and access. The firm manufactures equipment such as shower tracks, shower seats, grab rails, banister rails, bathroom accessories, rubber ramps, and glow rails. Based on its list of products, it is evident that Bendtech provides a variety of products to its clients (Bendtech, n.
Approach used in the Research From the research rationale for each of the firms presented above, it is worth to note that the organizations are spread over a wide geographic area. This is because the firms presented above operate worldwide since they have multiple subsidiaries. As a result, a physical research approach would not be appropriate to obtain the required information from the various firms. As a result, the research approach formulated should be able to research a wide geographic area. This implies that the physical presence of the researcher to the organizations’ target departments cannot be achieved. Since there is a time-frame for the research, the responses will be expected to be received within two weeks. Most of the questions used in the questionnaire will be open-ended.
This means that the structuring of the prompts will not be limited to the researcher’s pre-decided categories. Notably, Babin and Zikmund (2015) indicate that the selected organizations are not within the same industry and do not operate in similar sectors. The implication is that the questionnaire questions will not be standardized. In this sense, less technical should be used to ensure that the respondents understand the questions. The language used should be suitable to the vocabulary of the target groups (Hair et al. They should also be sufficient to cover the aims of the research. The questionnaire should also be of the appropriate length to increase the response rate. Through the use of questionnaires, the operations managers of the respective firms offer details about the successes of using Six Sigma and also provide the missed opportunities as a result of not using Six Sigma concepts.
For instance, the firms may find it difficult to align their employee interests with the Six Sigma concepts. Hence, this brings the issue of implementation. Nevertheless, Six Sigma helps online shopping firms to establish active customer care centers which offer great levels of customer service and enhanced experiences. Online shopping organizations utilize Six Sigma when aligning their transportation methods to provide the required customers’ products (Akpolat, 2017). This has been vital in the reduction of costs associated with transportation and delivery of products. For example, it is through the adoption of these concepts that Caterpillar Inc. has been able to save costs regarding operations and other elements. This has resulted to enhancement in its reliability of services, products, and improved quality. It is also evident that automobile production companies apply Six Sigma to ensure that there is a clear connection between the firm, dealers, and the customers.
The use of 6 Sigma helps the firm to have the upper hand and other benefits when negotiating supply contracts with the raw material suppliers and employment contracts with the employees (Evans & Lindsay, 2014). Findings from Companies which do not use Six Sigma Based on the comparable firms in Brisbane which do not use Six Sigma in their operations and activities, the firms cited various reasons as to why they do not use 6 Sigma concepts. Some of the firms indicated that the management does not have time to dedicate to formal Six Sigma programs and initiatives. As a result, the firms decide against using Six Sigma methodologies in their activities based on the perspective of lack of sufficient time. This reason is valid bearing in mind that Six Sigma application requires careful planning which utilizes a considerable amount of time (Albliwi et al.
Other manufacturing firms in Brisbane quoted that they do not use 6 Sigma because their organizations find it hard to cater for the costs of applying for Six Sigma programs. This is because when the ideas fail in other firms, some of the manufacturing firms in Brisbane end up shunning from the initiatives. Hence, they become reluctant to apply the concepts in their activities. Nevertheless, this can be mitigated by encouraging the management to look at the failure of other manufacturing firms to use Six Sigma from a different point of view. Closely related to this reason is the element of fear of failure (Albliwi et al. Some of the manufacturing firms in Brisbane have not been using Six Sigma in their operations because of fear of failure.
Ethical Issues in the Research When using the questionnaire to collect the required data, there is need to ensure that the respondents sign a participant consent form. The form notifies the respondents that the information should be provided voluntarily without threats or any form of coercion. As written by Bryman and Bell (2015), it will also inform the participants that they have the right to withdraw their information during the research process. As an ethical consideration, the research respondents’ privacy and confidentiality will be maintained. This means that the names of the researchers and address will not be presented when giving the research findings (Bryman & Bell, 2015). , Antony, J. , Abdul Halim Lim, S. , & van der Wiele, T. Critical failure factors of Lean Six Sigma: a systematic literature review.
International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, 31(9), 1012-1030. brisbane-australia. com/directory/manufacturing-industrial/manufacturing/armstrong-engineering Austrailers Manufacturing. (n. d. Trailer Manufacturers Brisbane & QLD. J. , & Zikmund, W. G. Exploring marketing research. Cengage Learning. Bryman, A. , & Bell, E. Business research methods. Oxford University Press, USA. Dedhia, N. R. Lean, Six Sigma and Lean Six Sigma: an analysis based on operations strategy. International Journal of Production Research, 52(3), 804-824. Edmund, M. On the Fast Track? Quality Progress, 51(2), 10-12. L. , & Davis, S. B. Quality management for organizational excellence. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson. J. Essentials of business research methods. Routledge. Jacobs, B. W. d. Dell Inc. – Six Sigma, the Enabler. Retrieved June 1, 2018, from https://www. isixsigma. , & vom Brocke, J. The six core elements of business process management. In Handbook on business process management 1 (pp.
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