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Choosing A Six Sigma Program

Aug 17, 2007
Business organizations all across the globe are deploying Six Sigma concepts and techniques for improving the quality of their products or services. This has created the need to educate employees about the various Six Sigma concepts and techniques that improve quality and help in offering better products and services than those offered by competitors. This is necessary, as quality products or services are primary requirements for the long-term success of any business organization.

Training Is Necessary

Any company planning to empower its employees with the various Six Sigma concepts and philosophies needs to enroll them in a Six Sigma program for getting the requisite training and qualifications. However, companies often become confused when it comes to selecting the most appropriate Six Sigma program. Conducting online research does not help in solving matters, as search results list thousands of training organizations, most of which are labeled as 'premier', 'best' or 'rated # 1'. For selecting the most appropriate Six Sigma program, companies need to look beyond the labels and concentrate more on the details of the training program.

How To Select The Right Training Process

Companies need to decide whether they need a standardized certification program or a simple learning program that imparts basic knowledge about Six Sigma. If certification seems necessary then it is important to ask training organizations about the type of certification provided by them and their student pass rates. Companies often send their employees for training in batches and as such only those training organizations need to be short listed that offer discounts on training large number of candidates. Expenses on training can be lowered even more by entering into a contract with the training organization.

Venues For Training

A program that can be conducted off-site in the same town or nearby area is far better than programs that are conducted far away from the company's location, as costs of hotels, airfare, meals, and others can increase overall training expenses. Companies need to ask potential trainers about the type of resources that they use in their training programs and how much of it can they bring along in case of off-site training.

Due Diligence

Companies need to interview potential trainers and ask questions regarding their past corporate relationships, referrals, total number of candidates trained by them till date, training materials used, earlier projects they have worked on, and their qualifications. This is necessary, as companies want trainers that have a great deal of real-world experience. Spending thousands of dollars on learning something that can be learnt by just reading books will certainly be a waste of money and effort.

Six Sigma programs are classified according to their depth and specialization. Just as in martial arts, white belts, yellow belts, green belts, brown belts, black belts, master black belts, and champions represent Six Sigma levels. Programs offered may include DMAIC, DFSS, Lean, Kaizen, Fishbones, SIPOC's, MiniTab, Process Maps, SAS, Change Management, Force Field Diagrams, and Project Management. Companies can select any one of these or a combination of these depending on the level of specialization that they think is necessary for achieving the desired Six Sigma goals and objectives.

Some Cautions

Companies need to make sure that the individuals who provide training are the same ones who have been interviewed. This is necessary because often, training organizations try to woo potential clients with their most competent trainers and actually send junior level professionals when the contract is signed. A lot of money is spent on training employees. Therefore, it is necessary to consider every detail before signing the training contract with the training organization.
About the Author
Tony Jacowski is a quality analyst for The MBA Journal. Aveta
Solution's Six Sigma Online offers online href="http://www.sixsigmaonline.org">six sigma training and certification
classes for lean six sigma, black belts, green belts, and yellow belts.
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