Project Smart ~ Exploring trends and developments in project management today

Calendar iconNot recorded
Adobe PDF icon

Optimising Six Sigma Project Selections

~ By Tony Jacowski

Six Sigma concept on a white background

To bring about a successful process, the project should be disciplined and defined. Below are three steps that are incorporated for a profitable process:

Establishing the Project Selection Steering Committee

Every Project Selection Steering Committee should be made up of managers who have undergone training as Six Sigma Champions, or any other key Six Sigma knowledge resources, like the Black Belts, Master Black Belts or deployment Champions, who can apply their knowledge in establishing the manageability and achievability of projects under consideration.

Generating Project Ideas

Every company has its own share of opportunities, problems, issues and frustrations, which are by far the vital sources of prospective projects. Each idea needs to be evaluated in the course of a project selection workshop. Approximately two weeks prior to the workshop, each project Champion should put together a list of project opportunities in their area, taking into account that the Six Sigma project should support the organisational strategies and be integrated to the basic business issues.

Employing predefined guidelines, every opportunity also has supporting project rationale data as well as historical volumes, financial impact and defect type. Project Champions and their team members together identify the process improvements that could be positive to the customers, employees and the business.

To generate feasible project ideas, project Champions must ask the following questions:

1. Reduction of Defects

  • Are there any occurrences of high volumes of rework and/or defects?
  • Have there been any failures besides the preferred specifications?
  • Does the given process possess a high degree of variation?
  • Would any scientific adjustments to the process result in forceful changes?
  • Does the process have any residual scrap?
  • Which inputs need to be managed for producing an unfailing output?

2. Reduction of Cycle Time

  • Is the resultant production of the process below the one expected?
  • Do any of the processes depend on multiple hand-offs between the individuals?
  • Is the process being delayed because of machine/computer downtime?
  • Does the process require a lot of overtime?

3. Reduction of Resource Consumption

  • Does the process need more workers for doing the job?
  • Does the process undergo a high variation in the consumption of material?

After identification, project information is reviewed in a standardised quad chart format that is presented to the steering committee.

Assessing and Prioritising Projects with a Project Selection Matrix

In the course of the formal project selection workshop, every identified project is evaluated together for determining integration opportunities and gauging projected profits. Current ongoing projects are also included in this evaluation; thereafter all the projects are ranked for verifying the main concerns employing the project selection matrix.

A key question that ought to be answered during the workshop is whether or not the project is an applicant for the DMAIC methodology. Value stream mapping design, or Lean for Six Sigma can prove to be a more appropriate methodology for a number of projects. Towards the end of the process, Black Belt resources are allocated projects on the basis of the prioritisation list.

The process of project selection gives a clear-cut way of gathering suitable data from every area of the business, classifying on the basis of improvement categories and finally applying the rating for prioritisation. Every project selection process aims to establish a clear path for executing process improvements that are beneficial to the business as one.


Tony Jacowski is a quality analyst for The MBA Journal. Aveta Solutions - Six Sigma Online www.sixsigmaonline.org offers online Six Sigma training and certification classes for lean Six Sigma, black belts, green belts, and yellow belts.


Comments

Be the first to comment on this article.

Add a comment



(never displayed)



 
2000
How many letters are in the word page?
Notify me of new comments via email.
Remember my form inputs on this computer.

Avoiding Project Management Pitfalls

Foot about to tread on a banana skin

Common pitfalls that projects experience and some tips to help make a project more successful and avoid the potential for chaos.

Project Scheduling And Resource Levelling

Gantt chart and fountain pen

This article describes the must do steps, in the correct order, for scheduling projects and levelling finite resources.

Resourcing Project Managers

Project manager jobs advert in a newspaper

Ironically, although resourcing production team members is a significant part of a Project Manager's role, very little focus is placed on resourcing the Project Managers themselves.

Stepping Up SMART Goals

What are your goals question in vintage wooden letterpress printing blocks

Here are some strategies and six simple steps for making sure your goals will be concise, clear, and produce the results for which you are looking.

PROJECT SMART is the project management resource that helps managers at all levels improve their performance. We provide an important knowledge base for those involved in managing projects of all kinds. With weekly exclusive updates, we keep you in touch with the latest project management thinking.

WE ARE CONNECTED ~ Follow us on social media to get regular updates and opinion on what's happening in the world of project management.


Latest Comments

Paula commented on…
How to Deal with the People Factor of Change Management
- Thu 16 May 2:52am

Billy Rane commented on…
6 Success Factors for Managing Project Quality
- Tue 14 May 4:30am

Duncan Haughey commented on…
When is a Project Manager not a Project Manager
- Fri 10 May 3:10pm

Latest tweets

In his short, but insightful article, A Thought-Provoking Idea on the Dangers of 'Nouns', Vishen Lakhiani looks at… https://t.co/PZ7MgdRqzw about 2 hours ago

General Project Management • Some advice on software https://t.co/VX5cy3IdLb about 5 days ago

General Project Management • Advice for Best Complimentary Qualification https://t.co/djava71tDD about 7 days ago