In 2011, Los Angeles County’s Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk, Dean C. Logan, had a vision of his department becoming a leader in customer service. He chose to use the methodology of Lean Six Sigma to help make that… (Read More)
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The Lean Six Sigma Simplified Webinars finally make learning Lean Six Sigma fun, easy and fast. The first Webinar in the series, “What Is Lean Six Sigma?,” is now available for FREE! To access the Webinar,… (Read More)
It’s one of the easiest tools to use yet one of the often most underutilized ones in the Lean Six Sigma tool belt. It’s the Plus‐Delta. A very simple‐to‐use brainstorming tool most commonly employed at the… (Read More)
QUESTION:What should be captured in a SIPOC?
I am working on a SIPOC diagram for an urgent care facility. The test facility is the Supplier. I can’t figure out the Input, but the Output was provided which is Diagnosis and the Customer is the Doctor and Patient. I was thinking the test itself would be the Input. Please help.
In determining what to capture in a SIPOC, I find it is frequently helpful to identify the start and stop of the process up front. I find that when people do this, they frequently find it easier to identify the specific outputs and inputs that they need to capture. If, in your example you want to frame the process you are mapping as starting with the receipt of the test from the testing facility, I would agree that the test results are the input.
If you are mapping the overall treatment of a patient at the facility, test results are one of many potential inputs to the process.
QUESTION:What are some examples of wastes in a banking institution?
Wastes in banking fall into the same categories as other transactional processes. In terms of examples of the Eight Wastes, there is:
- “Transportation” or touches related to the number of times a check is handled before it is deposited;
- “Inventory” shows up as emails waiting for answers or transactions waiting for batch processing;
- “Waiting” is experienced by customers while their deposits have not cleared;
Any tasks that require approval may be targeted as the ‘Waste of Intellectual Capital” if the decisions could have been made at lower levels. Banks are constantly trying to balance risk management to prevent fraud while not overburdening their processes with inspections and wait times that can annoy customers and increase labor costs.
There are lots of opportunities in banking processes for the application of Lean Six Sigma!
QUESTION:How is value determined in a Lean system?
Here’s a simple and brief answer to a meaty subject. Value in a Lean system is created through the elimination of waste and the transference of time and resources from non-value adding process activities to value-adding activities. Waste is definitional and comprises anything NOT needed in the creation and delivery of product or service to the customer. There are two types of waste: pure waste and unavoidable waste. Lean seeks to eliminate pure waste and minimize unavoidable waste. Generically, there are 8 Wastes, which are defined as:
- transportation: transport of the unit or resources in the process
- inventory: WIP and finished inventory
- motion: within the process including that of the workers
- wait time: delays and queue time of raw materials and the unit in the process
- over processing: doing more than is required
- over production: making more than real customer demand
- defects: errors, rework and scrap
- searching: related to motion, interruptions to find needed processing resources
A Lean system also creates value by focusing on the value stream in the process. Simply stated, the activities comprised in the creation and delivery of the service or product the customer is paying for. A streamlined, efficient value stream delivers a quality product and service to the customer. The Lean focus on facilitating flow, moving to pull systems and minimizing ‘batching’ reduces waste in process. Moving to a pull system eliminates forecasting errors. Batching helps eliminate unneeded WIP and inventory.
Finally, Lean systems promote worker empowerment and involvement, visual control and management of a process and feedback mechanisms to reinforce quality product and services and waste reduction. A truly successful Lean system requires embedding its concepts and methods in the “DNA” of the organization from leadership to its line workers to suppliers.
QUESTION:Do you have to go through your organization to get Lean Six Sigma training?
You definitely do not have to go through your current employer to get training. There are many organizations that provide Lean Six Sigma training including GoLeanSixSigma.com. Courses typically range in depth, but it’s always best to go through a workshop with a project or challenge to use when applying the tools can concepts.
Although it is not necessary to go through your employer to access training, one of the benefits of getting the training through an employer is that they may reimburse you for costs or pay for your training. There are many public courses offered online and live. Costs vary by provider and location.
The first 30 minute webinar in this Lean Six Sigma Simplified series, “What Is Lean Six Sigma?” is coming soon! Don’t miss it – it’s FREE! What you’ll learn: Why Lean Six Sigma is important and… (Read More)
The “To Be” or Future State of the process is a critical component of the Lean methodology and the Value Stream mapping exercise. It is a powerful exercise that strokes the imagination and helps break free… (Read More)
Lean Six Sigma (LSS) is a system designed to increase efficiency and enhance effectiveness in an organization. Can it work in County Government? Yes, it can, but it may be met with a few obstacles. I… (Read More)