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Improve-Control (DMAIC)
Six Sigma’s most common and well-known methodology is its problem-solving
DMAIC approach. This section overviews the methodology and its high-level
requirements, given that the requirements define the appropriate deliverables,
which dictate the tasks and the tool selection to aid in the task. This section also
outlines the DMAIC standard toolset, through the understanding of the tool-
task-deliverables linkage, to facilitate appropriate selection of a tool when refer-
encing the “how to” tool articles in Part 2 of this book.
What Is the Main Objective of this Approach?
The DMAIC (Define-Measure-Analyze-Improve-Control) is the classic Six
Sigma problem-solving process. Traditionally, the approach is to be applied
to a problem with an existing, steady-state process or product and/or
service offering. Variation is the enemy—variation from customer speci-
fications in either a product or process is the primary problem.
Variation can take on many forms. DMAIC resolves issues of defects
or failures, deviation from a target, excess cost or time, and deterioration.
Six Sigma reduces variation within and across the value-adding steps in a
process. DMAIC identifies key requirements, deliverables, tasks, and
standard tools for a project team to utilize when tackling a problem.
Brief Description of DMAIC Applications
This classic or traditional Six Sigma methodology was designed to solve a
problematic process or product and/or service offering to regain control.
It addresses improvements in p
roductivity (how many), financial (how
much money), q
uality (how well) and time (how fast)—PFQT. Originally
costs dominated the financial aspects, but lately project focus has shifted
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To think creatively, we must be able to look afresh at what we normally take for granted. | George Kneller