Six Sigma

six-sigmaSix sigma is a widely accepted quality concept in the corporate world. It is a data driven, customer focused, and result oriented methodology which uses statistical tools and techniques to systematically eliminate the defects and inefficiencies to improve processes.

Six Sigma started its journey in the 1980s as a data driven method to reduce variation in electronic manufacturing processes in Motorola Inc. in the USA. Six Sigma became famous when Jack Welch made it vital to his successful business strategy at General Electric in 1995. Today it is used as a business performance improvement methodology all over the world in diverse industry including general manufacturing, construction, banking and finance, healthcare, education, government, KPO/BPO, IT/ Software. At present IT/ ITES sector companies are dynamically implementing Six Sigma and it is no more confined into manufacturing sector only.

The term ‘six sigma’ comes from statistics and is used in statistical quality control (SQC) which evaluates process capability i.e. the numerical measure of the ability of a process to meet the customer specifications. A six sigma process is the one which produces 99.99966% statistically defect-free outputs which is equivalent to 3.4 defects per million opportunities (DPMO). Each six sigma project carried out within an organisation follows a defined sequence of phases with quantifiable value targets e.g. reduction in process cycle time, reduce cost, increase in quality rating/ customer satisfaction index, reduction is defect rate.



Key benefits of using Six Sigma:


Six Sigma vs Traditional Quality

Six Sigma

Traditional Quality

Decisions are driven by data         

Decisions are taken based on a combination of data and 'gut feel'.

Control process inputs (Focus on X’s)

Inspection method (Focus on Y)

Structured use of statistical tools to help in problem solving          

No formal structure exists for the application of tools

Structured training in applied statistics    

Lack of structured training

Root cause approach

Band aid approach

Prevention over inspection

Inspection over prevention


Six Sigma Characteristics


The figure below shows that Six Sigma is not only adopted by manufacturing companies. Six Sigma is increasingly being applied outside of the traditional manufacturing industry because of its inherent benefits. Today's competitive environment leaves no room for error. We must delight our customers every time and relentlessly look for new ways to exceed their expectations. Six Sigma plays a huge role in doing so irrespective of industry.

Many say that Six Sigma is only for large companies where they follow lot of processes. However, survey conducted by 6sigmastudy revealed that it is equally adopted by small to medium sized organizations as well. The figure below shows the distribution of companies by employee count.






If you have any question about Six Sigma training, feel free to contact ARANET ACADEMY Support.