iSixSigma

Bulding Homes?

Six Sigma – iSixSigma Forums Old Forums General Bulding Homes?

Viewing 8 posts - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #30033

    Ashman
    Member

    I work for a medium size home builder in Ca who is trying to implement Six Sigma, but I am having a hard time seeing how this will apply in a non controlled environment.Homes are hand built with no 2 homes exactly alike.  Having been through and teaching TQM, I think that approach is better. Is Six Sigma appropriate for the construction of homes?

    0
    #77836

    billybob
    Participant

    Speaking as a rookie………….
    We all hear stories from people building homes that the contractor screrwed up or was late, or something wasn’t right. Maybe TQM isn’t enough.
    What are your defects, anything you or a subcontractor did wrong that made an unsatisfised customer?  Whats your history of defects, both errors and lateness?  Why were you late finishing different processes in the building phase (sheetrock, plumbing, wiring, ect)?   Can you measure these mistakes and late building completions and make improvements to keep them from happening again?  
    Can you turn 6S around and measure your subcontractors and material suppliers for lateness, defects, and pain to you they cause?  Perhaps you’d find your better subcontractors and suppliers aren’t really the better ones, just the ones that are more friendly.
    But remember, Billybob is in training and speaking of what I been learning so don’t take this as an expert opinion but only as my thoughts!
    Later,  Red Sox are still 4 games out but working to improve!  And the Pats are in training camp so the world is still ok!
    Billybob

    0
    #77840

    Jamie
    Participant

    Even though each house is unique, you still basically do things in the same order.  You still put the wiring in before you hang the sheetrock and you hang and finish the sheetrock before you do the interior painting.  Yes the weather factor is uncontrollable but most contractors that I know have a weather factor built in.  An unusually rainy or snowy season can throw some chinks in this time line but under fairly normal conditions and proper planning, it shouldn’t be as big of an issue as it can be.  Process mapping is a great tool for contractors.  You map each step of the house building process.  You also allow for building code inspectors and any rework loops.  When you list your inputs and outputs at each step, you will start to see where your areas of opportunity exits.  Like Billy Bob said, maybe its your subcontractors or your suppliers who are not capable. 
    Six Sigma is driven by customer satisfaction and in house building, customer satisfaction is do or die.  Especially if you are building custom built homes or even spec house that there is no initial purchase contract on.  What could be worse than building a house to sale and then no one wanting to buy it because you either put more options than the average customer wants in a house its size and then it is priced out of its relative category or you put too few options in it and people think it is built cheap.  Trust me, I grew up in a family owned construction business, I’ve seen both sides of that coin occur.
    Personally, I think Six Sigma is perfect for your line of business. 
     

    0
    #77843

    billybob
    Participant

    Jamie,
    Just on correction in your posting.  Its Billybob, not Billy Bob.  Make sure when you say it its all one word. Billybob! 
    Later,
    Billybob

    0
    #77848

    Jamie
    Participant

    Billybob,
    Sorry.  I guess its a Southern thing.  All of my family in Alabama and Kentucky who has the name Billy Bob or Ray Bob or Jim Bob or whatever is called that because of a combination of their names (William Robert, Raymond Robert, James Robert, etc). 
    My Apologies,
    Jamie

    0
    #77850

    Patrick
    Participant

    I agree with Jamie.  It seems there is an enormous opportunity to do a QFD, Kano Analysis, and VOC with this type of service.  (Check out house of quality in the tools and templates).
    My thoughts,
    Patrick 

    0
    #77856

    Mike Carnell
    Participant

    Steve,
    I have to admit before I read your post I was reading some other stuff and wondering what was going on with some of the questions. Then I read youra and was truely amazed that someone who knows TQM and has taught TQM put such a thing up.
    What does each house being different have to do with anything. It doesn’t matter if you are doing TQM, SS, etc. There wouldn’t happen be common processes (since it is the process used that get worked on not the product) such as driving nails, cutting wood, soldering pipes, etc. How about the process it changes with each house as well. Sometimes we build the roof first then put up the walls and some doen’t even have a roof? that is why it is so difficult to schedule inspections after each phase of construction?
    Building homes is a process just like building a Truck (each one of those is different as well). They are done with other processes. You aren’t any different than any other process. When you stop worrying about how different you are and accept you have processes, then stop worrying about if ypou are doing TQM or SS you will make a little progress.
    Someone suggested some VOC type tools. Take those tools and add a question that is something like “do you prefer a home built by a company that practices TQM or SS?” Guess what – it isn’t on their radar screen.
    Good luck.

    0
    #77901

    Ashman
    Member

    In answer to some of your questions, we are ahead of scedual, our survey rate is 92% favorable and all seems to be running well. I think the effort being put to evaluate a process that seems to be working is a good sales job by our consultant to our senior management. Mid level management has had this program put upon them with no buyin of their own. We are now mired in projects that are causing us to alter our timeline to satisfy someone’s belt project. Can this be good??

    0
Viewing 8 posts - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)

The forum ‘General’ is closed to new topics and replies.