A recent article in Electronic Business Online talks about Lean Six Sigma at four companies in the electronics industry: Celestica, ON Semiconductor, Solectron and Xerox. All have seen an improvement inprofitability over the past five years and each agree that Lean Six Sigma has contributed to the gains. Here are a few snippets of information from each company:

“ON Semiconductor is using Lean Six on a more limited scale but nevertheless is experimenting in areas besides manufacturing. About a year ago, the company started training 24 people to be Lean Six “black belts” —12 in manufacturing and 12 in other areas of the company, says John Mallon, director of supply chain management at ON Semiconductor. Among the nonmanufacturing projects is one involving forecasting.”

“’Three years ago, we had 16 quarters of losses, but we now have nine quarters of gain behind us,’ says Marc Onetto, Solectron’s executive vice president, worldwide operations. ’There are many other factors, but Lean Six Sigma is a big contributor.’”

“’We don’t try to separate out the monetary gain we get with Lean Six, because it’s incorporated into the management process,’ says Arthur C. Fornari, vice president and corporate deployment officer for Xerox Lean Six Sigma.”

“’People start seeing the results and want to apply it to their own processes,’ says Robert Hemmant, global lean architect at Celestica, which adopted Lean Six in 2001. ’We see that as we improve manufacturing, a lot of other processes will need to change; otherwise, they’ll limit the rate of improvement.’ The company has Lean Six projects in human resources, finance and purchasing, he says.”

Lean, mean, Six Sigma machines, Electronic Business Online, June 1, 2006

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