Six Sigma Systems, Inc. experience:
The individuals who make up the Six Sigma Systems team have successfully implemented six sigma and lean manufacturing programs worldwide across many different industries and corporate cultures. Companies such as Xerox, American Standard, Whirlpool, Special Devices, Unisource/Georgia Pacific and Wyeth have achieved performance improvements with the help of Six Sigma Systems. The experience and insight we have gained enable us to rapidly and effectively introduce this methodology into your organization so you can achieve maximum results.
Six Sigma Systems has established kanban systems and reorganized product flow at various manufacturers. Six Sigma has developed new cell layouts, work instructions, and data collection plan. Six Sigma Systems used experimentation and measurement system assessment to understand defects at a manufacturer of automotive components.
A typical process improvement expert will generate $500,000 of savings in 6-9 months. A group of 24 employees can generate $12,000,000 of savings in your organization in that time period.
Six Sigma System, Inc. results:
The experts of Six Sigma Systems have a proven track record of success. Across many industries and many types of projects, Six Sigma Systems team members have delivered results such as these:
Just like any investment in business, inventory needs to serve the purpose of maximizing profit. However, in many cases inventory has turned into a major cash flow constraint thus making it necessary to optimize inventory using analytical and statistical methods in an integrated approach.
One of the biggest challenges in optimizing inventory is the fact that it is merely an output of many inter-organizational processes. All too often organizations attempt to lower inventory using non-analytical approaches which lower service levels.
Although counterintuitive, it in fact is possible to reduce inventory while improving service levels simultaneously using our proven inventory management methodology.
Our inventory management methodology attacks inventory from two directions:
Most clients find this two-step approach of significant value. During the first step cash can be made available quickly and success is immediately generated. Step two is used to generate breakthrough business results and provide a robust order fulfillment process that will be able to perform at lower inventory levels while providing extraordinary service levels.
A major US corporation identifies a cash flow problem. Further analysis reveals that inventory levels are high and turns are below most major competitors. In addition a technology change and a proliferation of models amplify the issue.
The corporate goal is a reduction of inventory across the order fulfillment process in excess of 50% with no negative impact on service levels. Customer feedback reveals that a key to customer satisfaction is on time delivery and any deviation from promised dates has a negative impact on customer satisfaction.
Course of action
A baseline of the existing order fulfillment process is conducted. It quickly highlights some key leverage points in the order fulfillment process. Furthermore it becomes apparent that much of the current inventory is present due to internally generated variation versus customer driven order variation.
Following the baseline activity various process changes are modeled to verify their impact on inventory levels and service levels. Real world constraints are taken into account prior to deciding on the appropriate changes. Simulations are conducted to verify the appropriateness of the analytical models using actual process data.
As a result the following changes are made to accomplish the goals.
Management of the new process is significantly less resource intensive than the original process. Changes in volume are easily accomplished due to the simplicity of the new order fulfillment process. Inventory is reduced and service levels to customers are improved.
Inventory reduction post full implementation: > $20,000,000
Often we view old equipment as not worth understanding and improving for our operations, however replacement costs can be staggering. Certainly purchasing new equipment is necessary at times. However, frequently it is possible to produce good product with existing equipment. Properly characterizing existing equipment using statistical methods can yield significant improvements. We have been able to help our clients utilize existing, considered 'out-dated', equipment to produce high quality product efficiently. Our improvement process follows the basic flow of:
A supplier to a major US manufacturer made the decision to stop providing critical components. As a result several programs are at jeopardy as they require the use of this supplied component. The supplier made the decision because the equipment was 30-40 years old, yields had traditionally run at 60% and the margins were low. There were no other suppliers found that would produce these critical components. The manufacturer was forced to buy the exiting equipment and produce the components. The goal was to produce the parts, for which there was no existing knowledge, and to improve the yield if possible. It was also a foregone conclusion that new equipment would have to be purchased.
Course of action
A baseline of the extrusion process was performed and a vast list of potential factors was identified during Process Mapping. It was also determined, through Measurement System Studies that the measurement systems were not capable of measuring the parts. The measurement systems were improved and several screening designed experiments (DOEs) were conducted. Results showed a few key factors to be important. Follow-up optimization experiments were run. In addition, some of the input devices that were not working on the equipment were repaired. The process was producing 100% yield within 3 months on existing part numbers. The next step was to produce parts that had not been previously produced. The first parts off of the new die met the desired specification, although slightly off target. Based on the process knowledge gained from the previous experiments one of the critical factors was adjusted. Within one shift the new parts were being produced to specification and on target.
Finally the purchase order for new equipment was cancelled.
Total cost savings: $3,000,000. Time to completion: 3 - 4 months
Administrative or transactional processes are at time not designed to function with efficiency since they are often viewed as secondary to the manufacturing operations of a company. These processes however, have direct implications to the customer and business performance and can be viewed as opportunities for significant savings.
A major US company was having difficulty with its cash conversion cycle time.
Course of action
A baseline of the process was performed from order input through collection. The baseline included:
The baseline showed that due to the complexity of the process there were many process and organizational locations where problems could and did occur. There was no short list of solutions that would eliminate the errors negatively impacting cash conversion. Furthermore, the feedback loops, which could have reduced the number of repeated errors were cumbersome, which prevented learning and improving from occurring. There was a relatively high turnover rate and the complexity of the process made training a lengthy and expensive process.
The following changes were made to improve the cash conversion cycle time:
The new process allows for teams to become familiar with their unique customers' requirements and to improve the existing process with a continuous and short feedback loop. Metrics allow them to focus on the critical few versus the trivial many aspects of their process.BACK TO TOP