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Six Sigma Projects: Examples and Types Explained

05th Sep, 2023
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Six Sigma Projects: Examples and Types Explained

Organizations use the Six Sigma projects methodology to transform the way their employees and management work. This method offers the organizations multiple tools which help them to expand their operational capacity and improve the capability of various processes in the business. This results in better profits, higher morale amongst the employees, and a better quality of products and services.

You can be a part of the Six Sigma training courses online to get the necessary skills to enhance the performance of your team and your organization, and to excel in Six Sigma project management. In this article, we will read about the Six Sigma projects and everything you need to know about them, including examples and real-life scenarios.

What Are Six Sigma Projects?

Projects in an organization that operates with Six Sigma methodologies, such as DMADV, DFSS, Business Process Management, and other Statistical Tools, are known as Six Sigma Projects. By using the six sigma method, organizations can better understand their customers' requirements. This helps them to streamline their product to construct precise goods, eliminating waste and depreciation.

To bring about such changes in an organization, the employees and the managers need to use their knowledge of statistics, engineering and technology, and project management- which are enhanced by the lean Six Sigma project management methodology.

Also, a person needs to have done the Lean Six Sigma Green Belt certification training to get the best insights on the six sigma methodologies.

Characteristics of Good Sigma Projects

Some characteristics in the process or result of a six sigma project helps identify if it is a good project or not. A good sigma project-

1. Generates High-quality Products 

Six Sigma, in the field of statistics, denotes Standard Deviation. This emphasizes the importance that the six sigma methodology holds for statistical quality control. A good sigma project creates the best quality products. If the products created as a result of a sigma project meet the satisfactory standards, it means that the sigma project was good and successful.

2. Follows A Methodical Approach 

A methodical approach is mandatory to enhance the quality of outputs, as implied by the six sigma methodology. Therefore, a sigma project that makes use of the DMAIC (Design, Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control) approach to improve the output quality, is a good sigma project. The effects of this approach are visible in the products or processes created as a result.

An alternate method, called DMADV (Design, Measure, Analyze, Design, Verify), can also be utilized for best results.

3. It Is Fact-Based 

The process of any project that uses the six sigma method is fact-based or data-based. Any project using statistical and systematic aspects is a good example of a Six Sigma project.

4. It Is Customer-oriented

One of the most important tenets of the six sigma methodology is customer focus. Enhancing the quality and standard of the products is based wholly or mostly on customer requirements and demands. A customer-oriented project is a good six sigma project.

5. Facilitates Teamwork

Another essential fundamental of Six Sigma is teamwork. It demands the coordination of the team members for an effective process of regulating and enhancing the quality of the product. If the team indulges in a project that works in synchronization and has acquired sufficient training, the project is considered good.

6. It Is Goal-based 

To get the best results from applying the Six Sigma methodology to a project, it is significant to set and comprehend the ultimate goal. This includes the organizational goal, as well as the personal motives of the individuals. A goal-based project is thus a good Six Sigma project.

The best and the most effective of these methods and approaches will bring about the best results for a project. Therefore, a project with all or most of these characteristics is considered a good sigma project.

How To Start Six Sigma Projects?  

Working on Six Sigma projects is all about planning and complying with the values and methodologies involved in six Sigma. Therefore, planning is the first step to beginning a Six Sigma project. Read in detail about the step-by-step process you can begin with your Six Sigma project. 

1. Build A Framework 

In this step, you must consider all Six Sigma's significant aspects and principles. Identify the goal you aim to achieve, the problem you need to solve, or the opportunity you wish to pursue. 

After that, you can focus on other factors pertaining to the project, such as its benefits, expenditure, scope, timeline, team members, etc. It is only after addressing these aspects that you can start with your project effectively. 

2. Select The Methodology  

Within six sigma, multiple methodologies can be utilized to bring about a successful project. Some include Lean methodology, Plan-Do-Check-Act methodology, FOCUS methodology, etc. The perfect Six Sigma project type or methodology will act as a roadmap to help you navigate through your journey to success. 

3. Begin The Work  

You should not wait too long before executing whatever you have planned. Taking too long in planning might keep you stuck in the first stage. While you start implementing things, various milestones will come and go along the way, and you will have to deal with them accordingly. 

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Six Sigma Projects: Applications 

The Six Sigma projects are used to increase the efficiency of an organization in multiple sectors today. While the intensive plan might differ in each sector, the overall principles are the same. Read about some of the most famous Six Sigma projects below. 

1. Healthcare Sector 

The Six Sigma methodology is used to increase the competence in health and wellness centers. The methodology may be used in the healthcare sector to- 

  • Reduce medication errors 
  • Cut short the length of stay at the hospital 
  • Lessen the risk of infection 
  • Improve patient safety 

2. Manufacturing Sector

Employing the six sigma methodology in the manufacturing sector can significantly improve a product's quality, thus resulting in customer satisfaction. Some Six Sigma Green belt project examples of how it can be used in the manufacturing sector include- 

  • To improve product design 
  • To enhance customer experience 
  • To reduce defects in products 
  • To improve quality control processes 

3. Construction Sector

The time and effort utilized by the construction sector can be reduced using the Six Sigma methodologies. Six Sigma is used in the construction sector to- 

  • Enhance the quality of materials used in construction 
  • Reduce the time taken for construction of a project 
  • Lessen the frequency of accidents during construction 
  • Avoid delays in project completion 
  • Improve the efficiency of the process of construction 

4. Education Sector  

The education sector can be highly affected by using the tenets of six sigma methodologies. Six Sigma can be utilized in the education sector to- 

  • Improve the effectiveness of teachers 
  • Reduce dropout rates 
  • Enhance the performance of students 
  • Improve the student retention rate 
  • Reduce levels of stress in the students, especially during exams. 

5. Finance Sector 

The financial services and processes can be made quick and efficient by inculcating Six Sigma methodologies in the practices. In the financial sector, Six Sigma can be used to- 

  • Improve customer service 
  • Reduce the time taken to make payments 
  • Bring down the cost of credit card transactions 
  • Lower the amount of time taken to pay bills. 

Different Types of Six Sigma Project 

Six sigma projects are classified into five types based on the ulterior motive of the project. They can be found below. 

1. Quick Win

This type of project is used in cases where an issue, which is not too infrequent, might occur. The team will need to work together to devise a simple solution in response to that issue or problem. The problem is contained in a department, where it is neutralized so that it does not spread to the organization's other departments. This project type is also known as Fast-track or Just-Do-It! 

2. DMAIC or Lean Six Sigma Project  

This is the most prevalent type of project in Six Sigma. It is also known as PDCA. This is used to improve the quality of the product and the process by reducing pre-existing defects or additional costs. The problems vary each time, are identified, and the solution is created and applied to the process or the product for improvement. 

3. Process Design

This project type, also known as DFSS or DMADV, is used to create a brand-new process in the organization that did not exist earlier. It is set as a benchmark, as the process derived is the first of its kind for the organization. 

4. Process Redesign 

This process is also known as re-engineering. It is used to redesign or re-engineer pre-existing processes which are deemed incompetent. In this case, incremental improvements do not make a process more productive. Thus, a complete redesigning of the previous process takes place. 

5. Infrastructure Implementation

This project type comes to use when an organization wants to establish key measurement systems. It is also known as process management. An organization brings VOC and monitoring of process capability to focus on the improvement efforts of the organization and its key players. 

In Conclusion 

The Six Sigma project is a versatile project system that has its applications in various fields and industries. By witnessing the lean Six Sigma project examples and applications mentioned above, you might have understood how using the Six Sigma practices can positively impact your business, regardless of the industry or the customer base you serve.

This makes being a six sigma expert an exceptional career option. If you are an employee in a firm, an HR professional, or a part of the management, you can equip the skills and knowledge required to master six sigma at various levels- such as green belt, black belt, etc.

With KnowledgeHut Six Sigma Training courses online, you can get the certification in the comfort of your home and without quitting your job. This will assist you in guiding your team into the path that will offer higher organizational efficiency and productivity levels, resulting in customer satisfaction and higher revenues.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1How many types of Six Sigma projects exist?

There are five-six sigma projects: Fast Track, DMAIC, DMADV, Process Redesign, and Infrastructure Implementation. 

2What do Six Sigma projects focus on?

The six sigma projects focus on improving the quality of the product and services and meeting the customers' requirements while doing teamwork. 

3How do you identify a Six Sigma project?

Various factors such as quality control, teamwork approach, methodical approach, customer-oriented approach, etc., are the characteristics of the six sigma project, which help in identifying them. 

4What are the five parts of six sigma?

The five parts of six sigma are DMAIC- Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, and Control. 

5What are the 6 sigma principles?

The six sigma principles are- to find your problem, communicate, focus on customer satisfaction, free your product of variations or problems, and be flexible.


Mounika Narang


Mounika Narang is a project manager having a specialisation in IT project management and Instructional Design. She has an experience of 10 years 
working with Fortune 500 companies to solve their most important development challenges. She lives in Bangalore with her family.

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