Manufacturing environment is the most commonly used for applying six sigma method. Great about using lean here is, that you can see how changes are influencing material flow, or process set up in front of your eyes. Check out this shor example of improving tubes manufacturing procss in automotive industry.

5 minutes reading. This article covers:

  • DMAIC – Use commonsense to drive changes
  • How to start a project? Business case
  • Measure and Analyze phase
  • Improving and Control cycle
  • Tool list download for free
  • Key takeaways about Six Sigma DMAIC
DMAIC – process maping

Hot news, folks. In order to help you as much as I can in your improvement efforts, I have launched non-binding consultation program. I would like to help you with:

  • Lean culture implementation in your organization
  • Six Sigma projects consultations
  • Lean Six Sigma trainings and certifications support
  • Project management theory turn into practical usage
  • Your career planning

First 30 minutes of consultation for free, every additional 1 hour 10 USD.

DMAIC – Use commonsense to drive changes

People are affraid of project management. They find it complicated, they do not understand it, it is too wide effort. Sometimes it is true. And leave these kind of efforts to somebody else, who is payided to run complicated projects.

But do not stop to help yourself to improve your life. To improve your work. It can be simple and logic effort. And if you cooperate with your colleague, or multiple colleagues, the results will be faster, more sustainable and you can have a fun during your work.

Hope this small example can help you starting your improvement effort.

Be the one who tries new thinks. Together with commonsense, you will be successful in changes.

Erik from six sigma mania
Project charter template – I call it contract between project lead and project sponsor

You can download DMAIC list on the link below:

I do videos, blog posts, and all templates for free, in my free time. I will appreciate if you can donate me a cup of cofee, for more energy in my creation. (1 dollar counts, too 😉 Click on this link: I would like to support Erik in his effort

Build the best project plan with me- read here

How to start with project? Build a business case.

There is challenge in tubes production process with increased demand. Until now, process as it was setup was sufficient to fulfill requirements. Production is running on two shifts. Increase by 30% is great, but people working in the process are struggling with overtimes. (increase from 350 to 455 parts / shift)

Management do not want to open 3rd shift yet. Expenses to open it would not cover and return investments. But they are willing to spend 25000 USD on process improvements

Team has captured current state using process map.

Tubes cutting and forming process will be able to fulfill new requirements. Bending and washing process would have no problem too. Testing, assembly and packing process are also able to fulfill it.

process maping
Business Case is part of the charter

How to become great project manager? – read here

Green belt project selection – calculator

I recommend you testing project idea on project calculator, I have developed based on my training experiences. It will help you to determine, how demanding leading project will be for you.

THis is how my calculator looks like

Selection tool downolad

You can download selection tool on the link below:

Measure and Analyze phase

Data Measurement and analysis pointed on brazing as a bottleneck. So, team must focus on it.

Detailed brazing process analysis was made. Hole drilling takes 30 seconds. Tube and component adjustment to holder takes 10 seconds. Automated Brazing process starts with pushing button. It is 1 minute and 30 seconds required to flames heat area, to melt brazing addition, and cool it by water.

Brazing process analyzis

Team made fish bone analysis, to brainstorm not obvious effects causing slow brazing process. Parts comes tangled up from previous washing process. Drilling process sometimes creates chips, that are difficult to be cleaned. There are often brazed components reworks. Burned tubes occurrences require to scrap parts. Cooling water is splashing around, which makes work less comfortable. Standing on the floor whole shift makes worker tired and less concentrated. Changeover between different tube shapes takes too much time.

TOP 11 Six Sigma certification companies review – read here

Improve and Control cycle

Ergonomic carpets were ordered immediately. Old types of flushing pipes were exchanged to adjustable modern ones. These two quick wins showed team commitment to improve.

Other measurements were done, to specify statements from fish bone. There are 5% parts with chips. 10% of component rework. 3% of scrap. Changeover takes 30 to 45 minutes.

Used 5 whys method identified possible root-causes of reworks and scraps. And it is not sufficiently cleaned tubes from oil. Experts from washing machine contractors were called to help with this. Oil remover chemistry was exchanged for adequate one. Rework decreased to 1% and discrepancy to 0.5% caused by human factor. Team will address later on.

Chips inside tubes problems was removed by upgrading drilling tool. Chips sucking system efficiency was improved by better tubes holder.

Changeover challenge was addressed too. Instead of one brazing holder, special custom made holders for each tube design was made.

Check out my video DMAIC example in manufacturing

All these efforts decreased brazing cycle time by 15%. Still not sufficient to meet required outputs.

Brazing machine was redesigned to have two brazing stations. It was longer term action. After working with machine supplier change was implemented in 3 moths after purchase. Now one person can handle two fixtures. One Brazing time cycle is used to load second fixture. Drilling process was assigned to operator managing bending and washing machine. That freed up brazing operator time to focus on brazing only.

All these changes brought brazing process way below the bottleneck and process can support demand.

To sustain changes, new instructions with pictures were made. Operators were trained. Technicians making changeovers are now responsible for making first OK part, that must be approved by quality department.

Well, don´t you think it´s time to celebrate?

3x Pareto rule examples (+excel template) – read here

DMAIC tools download for free

Are you interested to have tool list I use in my projects?

I have added or removed some tools to original tool list I have received from my greatest trainer. Erin, Lady I never foget her. You know, the best thing I like on my projects is, that I meet people like her. Fantastic, openmined, helpfull, full of energy, smiling, ready to help. I wish you same trainer, or mentor on you path.

Here is a picture to show you what you will download:

my six sigma tool list, use it, share it

And finally link. Use it, share it.

I do videos, blog posts, and all templates for free, in my free time. I will appreciate if you can donate me a cup of cofee, for more energy in my creation. (1 dollar counts, too 😉 Click on this link: I would like to support Erik in his effort

I strongly recommend to have Learning to See book and Mixed model Valuestream for all managers, for all supervisors, engineers and leaders. You will be able to understand how valuestream should work, how to make value flow, and implement lean in any business, any process. It is really worth it.

Learning to See – Creating Mixed Model – Guru Books

If you would like to buy “Learning to see” book by Mike Rother click on this affiliate marketing link:

f you would like to buy “Creating Mixed Model VS” book by Kevin J Duggan click on this affiliate marketing link:

I may receive a commission if you sign up through this link. This is not affecting final product pric

Key takeaways about Six Sigma DMAIC:

  • It is a robust process improvement method
  • It is a team effort on not obvious problem reason resolution
  • There are 5 phases – Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control
  • Improvement targeted based on data analysis
  • Reduces variation in processes, in other words , repeatability is improved
  • First understand current problems and pains to enable improvement changes

Do not be afraid to learn Lean Six Sigma tools. Do not be scared of heavy statistics, or using a lot of mathematics. 95% of the time I do not use it, at all. I do not like statistics. I do not like collecting data. Yes, there is a measure and analyze phase. But it only sounds terrible. In our example, cooks were able to drive changes. And they used watches to measure, and logic, that told them where to improve.

Majority of the time is a commonsense usage, that drives changes.

erik from six sigma mania

Do not forget to visit and subscribe my YouTube channel. I am uploading Six Sigma, Lean and Project oriented videos regurarly. So, stay tuned.

Yours sincerely Erik.

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