Case Study

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Category: Business and Industry

Date Submitted: 03/01/2011 06:12 PM

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This is a case study of how Six Sigma, using the DMAIC improvement methodology, can be applied in a commercial environment. It is based on a project done by a 15-person office in Hanover, MD that sells electrical equipment and supplies.

In January 1998, district manager Rob Sullivan volunteered the office to be a Six Sigma beta site. For the Hanover team, this designation translated to a goal of performing at the Six Sigma level by the end of December 1998. The team was tasked with driving orders growth using the Six Sigma process. The Six Sigma beta site program had been used to increase performance using Six Sigma methodologies in the business's warehouse environments for functions such as shipping and receiving, but this was the first time this approach had been used in a commercial sales office.

This case study shows how the mission to become a Six Sigma office would drive improvement projects for two key customer CTQs, mapped here step-by-step to the DMAIC methodology. The sequence and/or details of some of the actual events have been modified for the sake of simplicity or to better illustrate a point.

Project Leadership

|Rob Sullivan, District Manager | |

|Tim Richards, Black Belt | |

|Wilma Taylor, Small Project Specialist | |

|Harry Dorman, Systems Engineer | |

Define 1: Project CTQs

1.1 Evaluate VOC

On January 29, 1998, the Hanover sales staff took the first step to fulfilling their mission—to become a Six Sigma office by the following...