CEOs’ of the companies think that adapting to Six Sigma methodology involves very high cost and as such hesitate even to look at it. At the same time they are unable to identify solutions to the problems obstructing the organizational performance. As a first step it is necessary to understand the exact problems and the next step is to find methods to eliminate those problems. Solutions to the problems are not uniform; these are different for different organizations. But there are certain basic problems which are easy to identify and quantify. If the problem is related to increasing speed of the existing process, it is better to adapt to lean manufacturing first .Lean manufacturing helps in identifying process steps which are not adding value to the customer and the elimination of those process steps increases the process speed. But if the problem relates to improving the process output quality, Six Sigma improvement methodology will be the right choice. How to identify the need to adapt to Six Sigma? What are those symptoms? When any single symptom is recognized, it may be the beginning of other symptoms to follow. If an organization is able to identify the symptoms at an early stage, it is easier to adapt to Six Sigma improvement methodology and eliminate the problem. Every organization has concerns (problems), relating to the external customer and internal organization.
In most manufacturing organizations there are symptoms relating to the customer which indicate the need to adapt to Six Sigma methodology. If the symptoms relating to the customers are ignored, then the organization may lose the customer. Problems relating to the customer are the first ones to be eliminated so as to maintain good relations with the customer. The major customer related symptoms which indicate the requirement for adapting to Six Sigma are as
Poor product quality
Before undertaking any improvement programme, it is necessary to collect data on the current status of supply, customer complaints, customer returns, Profitability and all other related areas.
Many of the concerns of the customer originate from internal organizational problems. In the day-to- day fire fighting, managers do not try to fix the internal problems permanently but resort to short term solutions. These sometimes aggravate the situation and cause severe loss to the organization.The symptoms which an organization should notice and quickly initiate suitable corrective action by adopting to Six Sigma improvement methodology.