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six sigma in planning and monitoring

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tentu rama mohan
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six sigma is useful in identifying the trends on schedule and cost on projects.

I want to know the others opinion on this.

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Keith Marsden
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This type of analysis was used by Bechtel on the CTRL project, which completed recently.

I am well acquanted with the Doc Control manager their who was positively gushing at the positive effects that 6S had on his department.

That said, it was an enormous project with many hundreds of thoasands of documents.

Horses for courses...
Gary Whitehead
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If the same system of documentation approval was being used from project to project, then Keith’s suggestion is very viable as the benefits would be seen throughout all future projects.

If we’re talking about a project-specific process, then it’d have to be a very big project to justify -say >10,000 documents going through the process, depending on how bad the curernt system is.

I think it would still be a difficult one to implement though, as 6s improvements to human processes tend to rely on things like work instructions & SOPs to reduce the variation. Office workers aren’t as use to this sort of micro-level control of their activities as workers in a factory, where 6s is more at home.
Nicolas Berger
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Sorry but this is very theorytical !
Practically, nobody would have time to consider 6S improvement on a Project !
We usually have not enough time to issue what we have to issue...
Keith Marsden
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6S can be useful when applied to the processes underpinning any major long duration project.

For example, most major projects invest lots of time and money procuring document control solutions, but relatively little time analysing the processes involved with controlling documents.

6S can be used very successfully to decrease the time lag betwen submitting documents for approval and them finally being approved. Attacking these "down times’ (ie periods when documents are effectively in limbo) can have a significant impact on overall efficiency.

I’m sure with a little creative thought, many other such repeatable processes exist.

Peter Holroyd
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could be useful on repeat activities like letting of purchase orders & subcontracts. The technique would allow you to gather the data (across all projects) to support a business case that it just takes for ever (if you think that) and you should go for single source / alliance arrangements on your project. Conversely a technique like BPR would enable you to streamline the process at a business level.
The technique is best applied on work streams that once improved could potentially bring the best added value to the business - now if only 6 sigma could help in that process and measure the benefit afterwards (as opposed to forecast benefits) then in would be more widely applied
Nicolas Berger
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Do not forget that 6S only concerns repeatable activities.

In my industry, ie Oil&Gas, I don’t see when we could use it.

Anyway, it could be used by SubContractors or Manufacturers of dedicated items.
Marcio Sampaio
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Thanks a lot Gary.
Gary Whitehead
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Six Sigma certification is done in stages, equated to the belts of martial arts, running through Green and Blue Belts to Black Belt and Master Black Belt.

The company I worked for provided my training & accreditation, but external courses are available at least for the lower levels. To reach the likes of black belt, you also have to demonstrate succesfull use of the 6 Sigma practises & philosophies over time, similar to gaining chartered engineering status
Gary Whitehead
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If you google it, you’ll find plenty of useful websites, but here’s a couple I have used:


http://www.onesixsigma.com/

http://www.sixsigmaglobal.com/

http://www.knowledgeplatform.com/presentation/sixsigma_presentation.html
Marcio Sampaio
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And where i can get informations??
Marcio Sampaio
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Is there a Six Sigma certification??
Mehdi Rashidi Ala...
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Dear rama,
Six simga use only for cost reduction in the any company.
This tool is very expensive and very complex.
For monitoring stages of six sigma use PM method.

Best Regards
Mehdi
Gary Whitehead
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I have never used Six Sigma methodologies to analyse Projects in this way, but I was in a previous life a 6s practitioner. I’m not sure such a method of statistical analysis is appropriate.

In order to get a statistically significant trend, you’re going to need at least 20 or so data points. These data points need to all refer to the same activity or group of activities, so you couldn’t for example track adherence to schedule for a single project for 20 weeks in a row and get anything useful (in terms of 6s) as the planned activities would be different each week. You would I suppose be able to track final schedule adherence to 20 projects with identical scope and identical methodology, but this scenario doesn’t seem likely to me.

Six Sigma works best (or at least I only understand how to use it effectively) when analysing a process or group of processes that have entirely repeatable, predictable and documented inputs, methodologies, and outputs. For example, I used it successfully to control input of ingredients into a mixing process for making batches of toothpaste, or amount of time finished goods spent in our warehouse before being shipped. I don’t think it is suited to track something as bespoke and variable as your average project. –There’s two many things you can’t control adequately, from the inputs of the client / subbies, to the WoW (ways of working) of the project team, to the weather, ad nauseum.

I think the best you could get is a very basic form of control chart with arbitrary target levels of variation (say +/- 5% schedule adherence to stay in the green zone, +/- 10% for the yellow), as defined by management and not statistics.