iSixSigma

cycle time

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  • #38248

    Bambace
    Participant

    To All experts:
    I am new to Six Sigma and I am leading a project that needs to reduce cycle time.    The unit is basically an order and the measurement is the time it is received until the time the invoice is ready.
    My question is this:
    What are some potential X’s?  I have thought that some would be
    — Wait Time:  The time the order is waiting to be initially worked by a rep
    — Processing Time:   The touch time involved to enter and edit the order.
    That is all I could come up with.   I really treated the X’s as the major gates in the process.   Now I know I should look at how many orders come in (Volume variation),   Productivity by employee,  etc…..
    Are those considered X’s?  What other X’s can there be with cycle time?  I thought it was just wait time and processing time
    Thanks for the help…….I will be waiting all!!!!!!
    Jess

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    #114275

    Rahul More
    Participant

    Hi Jassika,
     
    Even I am not an expert but I have completed two projects on cycle time reduction. I will suggest that firstly identify the big Y. If there are some stages in the process then divide this big y in to sub Y’s. Once you are ready with this part then try to associate X’s with the respective phases.
     
    I would like to know the process where you are trying to reduce the cycle time. You can mail me details directly on my mail ID [email protected]
     Rahul

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    #114276

    Shrestha
    Participant

    Hello Jessica,
    This is a classic Lean Six Sigma problem where the combined application of the two techniqies are most likely required for breakthrough results.
    May I therefore suggest that u take inputs from lean methodologies too before emabrking upon the problem.
    If you need any mor help pls e mail me at [email protected].
    Hope this helps.
    Niraj  
     

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    #114277

    Chen
    Participant

    Hi Jessica,
    I think the the big Y is your cycle time an de X’s are the knobs you can turn to decrease you Y:
    – work in progress (queue)- process (machine) failures- non value added oprerations in your process- first pass yield (do the tings right the first times)- amount of process steps- ect.
    Very curious about your process and the project your doing.
    With best regards,
    Bernard ([email protected])
     
     

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    #114278

    SKK
    Member

    Hi All
    Cycle time projects require understanding of two major components – a) Actual working time on every transaction at various stages. We can look at the distribution of working time at each stage which will explain the behaviour at each stage.
    b) Waiting time i.e., the time when a piece of work is waiting to be worked on. Again we can have a look at the distribution pattern at each satge.
    Stagewise working and waiting time will explain us the bottleneck. Then look at the resource loading of your resources by doing a work sampling or any other method which can estimate the amount of time a resource is actually working.
    Once you have this data – you can further investigate whether the working time of resource is actually productive or is reworking or doing a non value adding activities like follow-up and reviews. Also if the variation in working time is high at any stage of working, look at the resourcewise productivity. Use proper statistical tests to validate whether individual (or group) of resources are significantly different from each other.
    I have actually used this analysis methodology successfully in five cycle time reduction projects (three in manufacturing & two in service). Once you have modelled the problem correctly, the problem is essentially the same in mfg and service. To improve the cycle time, I have found that regulating the flow of work in the system actually improves the cycle time without causing any dissatisfaction on customers part as he/she  knows what to expect from the system.
    Hope the above helps you in your analysis.
    Good Luck.
    I can be reached at [email protected].
    SKK.

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    #114279

    Norbert
    Participant

    Hi Jessica,
    additionally to what have been said, I would recommend to do a fishbone diagram. You might want to brainstorm on basis of fishbone categories some potential causes of not meeting customer expectations about cycle time. The results (in a maybe consolidated form) should lead you the to the x´s you might want to investigate more in  the Measure and Analyze phases.
    Include your team in doing this and/ or(if you have none) involve experts at least in the brainstorming session.
    I hope this helps.
    Norbert

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    #114282

    Joseph Banerjee
    Participant

    What I will suggest you Jessica is to first capture the as is process then do a pareto chart to identify what are the problems that you really need to care off first based on the pareto do a complete fishbone with your team thru brainstorming and you will find your X’s and then the control impact matrix.
    good luck
     
     
     

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    #114284

    Peppe
    Participant

    Jessica,
    first of all, why you started the project ? Because actual cycle time is to high, to reduce it (how much?), because you are forecasting the increasing of order and you don’t want increase people ?
    Having this clear in  mind and with a detailed description of your actual process, you can easly understand which are the steps  to improve.
    Rgs, Peppe 

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    #114298

    Dale
    Participant

    I think you are getting the cart before the horse.  It doesn’t sound like you have done your process mapping yet.  Then using the process maps do a time value map, maybe a value stream map, and a spaghetti chart.  After you get that all done you will not only know your Xs, but the time it takes to do each X.  And it should point you to where your best opportunities for improvement are located.

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    #114302

    Stevo
    Member

    Jessica, sorry but I’m going to go off the subject.
     
    This is fascinating to me, about a year ago I posted that females are generally treated better on the site (not including Darth’s mean response to the crypt Association and Detachment post).
     
    Now it looks like we have many posters that are leaving their email address (I know this happens, but not to this extent), It looks like a dating website (not that I know).
     
    Stevo

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    #114308

    Tajjammul Hussain
    Member

    Hi Jessica,
    Lots of responses to your question…..let me see if this helps..
    Which ever quality methodology we yse, when its Time Reduction then only thing that save you is Work Study ( Method Study and Time Study)…It will be an eye opener !!!
    Regards,
    Hussain.
     
     
     

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    #114310

    McD
    Participant

    Jessica
    I am going to repeat to an extent what Dale and others said, but perhaps put some things together.  You indicated you are new to Six Sigma, and understanding the DMAIC process, as well as the whole point of it, it important.  I get the feeling that you are, as Dale suggests, putting the cart before the horse.  But it’s not at all clear to me that even Dale’s suggestions aren’t premature.
    Presumably you have been through Define.  That is step one, and it is an important step.  You need a clear definition of your objective and as a Black Belt, you should feel obligated to reject any project that is not explicit in its definition.
    In Measure, you go after the Y’s.  It is tempting to worry about the X’s, but it is a big mistake.  The X’s come later.  First, be sure you can recognize what success looks like, and that you have agreement from all the stakeholders on what success is.  Worrying about the X’s in Measure simply distracts you from the important task before you.  You MUST have a clear, credible measurement of the big Y.  Once you have that measurement, you can then put a stake in the ground and announce that you will get that measurement to some goal and that will constitute success.  You may need to do some negotiating with the stakeholders, but if you cannot get agreement on a number that you can live with, and be confident that you can measure, then you need to leave this project and spend your valuable time on another.
    Once you have agreement on the smell of success, now you can move on to detailed process mapping (you may have had to do some process mapping already just to understand the Y).  While you are doing that process mapping, the X’s will become obvious to you.  But it makes no sense to spend time chasing after X’s until everyone involved has agreed, in very concrete terms, what you are trying to accomplish.
    As a Six Sigma professional, you are a valuable, and probably quite expensive, resource to your company.  You have an obligation not to squander that resource on projects that have no chance of success.  That is why it is critical that you understand what success looks like, and that you and everyone else agrees on it.  Then, you can move forward with confidence.
    –McD
     

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    #114332

    Chen
    Participant

    Hi Stevo,
    Who said Jessica is female?All those guys are just offering help.
    Greetz,
    Bernard
     

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    #114360

    Stevo
    Member

    Bernard, just an observation, go back and look at other posts.
    To answer your questions:  I do not know if Jessica is a female, and if she is not, then she is using one of my tricks ( When I need help, I often sign my post as Farrah or one of the other angels).
    And I think it great that this site has so many helpful guys.
    Stevo

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