Six Sigma professionals have the requisite expertise and experience in implementing Six Sigma projects and their services are necessary for ensuring the success of the implementations. However, not all organizations can afford such services because Six Sigma professionals normally charge hefty fees. The best option then for such organizations is to provide Six Sigma training to their existing employees. Training existing employees not only helps in reducing implementation costs but also ensures that the implementations are completed within the specified time.
However, selecting the most appropriate training course for employees may not always be easy because of the recent increase in the number of entities offering Six Sigma training courses. The problem is compounded because most of the training entities claim to be the best in the business.
Organizations can develop their own training institutes, but this can further complicate the financial health of an organization that is already running short of funds. The best option then is to select the most cost-effective training program for the employees. Given below are some of the basics that a good Six Sigma training program should always have:
1. The training program should cover important Six Sigma methodologies such as DMAIC (define, measure, analyze, improve, and control) and DMADV (define, measure, analyze, design and verify).
2. The training program should aim at creating awareness about the roles and responsibilities of personnel associated with Six Sigma implementations. It should make the employees learn the tenets of effective communications, which is a necessity for successful Six Sigma implementations.
3. The training should cover all types of Six Sigma statistical tools such as Critical Path Method (CPM). CPM helps in designing a proper timetable that predetermines the start and completion of key events in any business process. With the help of CPM, employees can easily find out the exact status of various projects by monitoring key events through the CPM timetable. Other important statistical tools that need to be covered include FMEA (Failure mode and Effects Analysis), which helps in anticipating future problems through analytical interpretations.
4. The training should enable employees to learn the use of software tools such as RapAnalyst, which simplifies DOE (Design of Experiments) and many other activities related to data mining; MiniTab and SixNet Intelligence; and the Six Sigma calculator, which is a hand tool. The training should also cover the use of judgmental tools such as Ishikawa Root Cause Analysis Diagram (Fishbone diagram), Brain Storming & Affinity Group Tool, Thought Map, and Regulation Diagram.
5. The training should also enable employees to learn soft skills such as presentation skills and managerial skills such as decision-making. These skills will go a long way in ensuring the success of Six Sigma implementations.
A Six Sigma training program that covers all the aspects stated above needs to be selected, even if it is relatively more expensive than other available training programs.
Tony Jacowski is a quality analyst for The MBA Journal. Aveta Solutions - Six Sigma Online ( http://www.sixsigmaonline.org ) offers online six sigma training and certification classes for lean six sigma, black belts, green belts, and yellow belts.