How Kaizen and Six Sigma Training Led to $40K in Savings

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In business, when times get tough, the knee-jerk reaction is to have layoffs. What follows is a remarkable example of one company that decided to make a further investment in its people by getting them trained toward Six Sigma Green Belt certification and having them put their focus on saving money for the organization. Even […]

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How the Six Sigma DMAIC Process Made Samsung Into an Industry Leader

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With strategic implementation, Six Sigma can do wonders for an organization. The methodology can drastically improve processes, cut down on waste, and even help provide better results in the design and R&D of new products. Samsung found that it was having issues with all of the above and, in 1999, conducted a complete overhaul of […]

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Following the Road to Improvement

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As a recently promoted Vice President, Chuck needed to quickly understand what all his people were doing. Chuck, a longtime employee of a major utility company, had been recently promoted to Vice President to take over the leadership of a wide range of different functions than what he had been managing. As a result of […]

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handshake agreement

The Cost of Customer Misalignment (& How to Fix It)

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This consumer products company has a large portfolio of products. Working with key customers, the company develops and promotes brand marketing programs to help the customer improve their sales which increases the company’s revenue as well. The CEO of the company realized the percentage of successful promotions was less than he expected. At the same […]

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Tips for Efficient Process Mapping

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A process map is a hierarchical method for displaying processes that illustrates how a product or transaction is processed. It is a visual representation of the workflow either within a process — or an image of the whole operation. Process mapping comprises a stream of activities that transforms a well-defined input or set of inputs into a pre-defined set of outputs.

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Simplifying Complex Systems with Value Stream Mapping

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Gain a better understanding of value stream mapping and how you can use it in your business. We’ll cover the flow, department interactions, bottleneck identification, and key metrics — as well as a few best practices.

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Value Stream Mapping and Process Mapping

Resource Page: Value Stream Mapping

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During the month of August – while many are taking time off to enjoy summer – we will be offering a resource page on a particular topic. The resource page features an overview of the week’s topic and links to the best related content across iSixSigma (articles, blogs, discussions, Marketplace products and dictionary entries). This […]

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Case Study: Improving Value for Clients and Employees

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On her drive into work, Melissa Garcia was listening to Beethoven’s Piano Sonata No. 14 in C Sharp Minor and sipping on the mocha java blend she’d brewed in her kitchen just minutes before. It was a brisk fall Thursday morning, and Melissa was headed into the office where she was three weeks into her […]

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Organizational Process Flow: A River of Possibilities

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Fifteen years ago, a student of mine introduced me to the Toyota Way. As a participant in a project management program and then in a Six Sigma course, this young man (who happened to be across the world from me in Japan) began posting assignments using methodologies from his employer, Toyota. Later, that student became […]

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Value Stream Map Without All the Data Still Offers Gains

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A complete value stream map (VSM) is like a flowchart on steroids. There is the usual action boxes with arrows showing the flow of work, but a lot of other information, too – material and information flow, operating parameters, process and lead times, inventory, a timeline depicting value-added time relative to overall lead time, and […]

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Value Stream Mapping on a Budget (Using a Spreadsheet)

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Value stream analysis is one of the easiest methods to analyze a process and identify areas that can be improved. Even someone inexperienced can find the low hanging fruit. But what do you do when you want to conduct a value stream analysis and the boss tells you that he is not going to buy […]

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The 5 Whys: A Simple Tool in Value Stream Analysis

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Not so long ago in an organization not so far away, a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt not much different from many other Black Belts was running a value stream analysis. Creating the current state map was relatively easy since the participants understood their function and the way that information and inventory flowed along the […]

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Value Stream Mapping Definition

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Value stream mapping is a lean manufacturing or lean enterprise technique used to document, analyze and improve the flow of information or materials required to produce a product or service for a customer. Full definition.

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