Institute of Lean Management launches Six Sigma Yellow belt certification

Wednesday, 11 June 2014 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

The Institute of Lean Management,  Sri Lanka was set up in 2009 with the mission of improving all processes, eliminating all sorts of waste, improving productivity, quality and morale to deliver world class best practices. In the past, it has had an emphasis on the manufacturing sector, but as of this year, is geared also towards the Service Sector. The CEO of the Institute is Thilak Pushpakumara who has 20 years experience in the Manufacturing sector and who is assisted by his Japanese counterparts. Arosha Jayasundera is heading the Six Sigma division for the Service sector where she has had 20 years experience. The Institute runs a number of training programs in Lean, 5 S, Quality Management Systems, Total Productivity Maintenance and has recently launched a Yellow Belt Six Sigma program. It provides both training and consultancy services appropriate for manufacturing, electronics, milk, banking, heath, IT, airlines, entertainment, tourism, etc. The Lean and Quality concepts were developed in the early 1900s with Six Sigma being developed in the 1980s commencing in Motorola. Lean tools focus on the eight wastes which can be found in an organisation such as motion, waiting, overprocessing, inventory, overproduction etc. Most processes have an element of the eight wastes. In the health sector ie hospitals, these wastes can amount around 40% of the costs. Lean and Six Sigma tools provide a lot of value to organisations and unlike marketing concepts and marketing budgets, these tools deliver increased value to the customer and deliver both hardcore and softcore benefits such as: improved efficiency, reduction of rework, productivity improvement, cash flow improvement and reduced overtime. On the soft side, implementation of these tools results in reduced defects, reduced complaints, increased accuracy, improved customer feedback, ability to hire better resource personnel and much more. A number of tests have proved that it is harder to improve customer satisfaction and easier to improve customer value (a combination of price and value) which enables the organisation to retain and increase the customer database more effectively as this is linked to customer loyalty. Six Sigma focuses on this aspect whilst also delivering financial benefits for the organisation. Under Continual improvement, a Project Charter has to be drawn up which states the problem or ‘defect’ in the customer’s eyes. The expected savings also have to be noted, the time frame and the team members which will include one sponsor. The project will follow the DMAIC philosophy which is Diagnose, Measure, Analyse, Implement and Control. There are currently some large Sri Lankan companies which are using Lean and Six Sigma concepts. Some large banks in Sri Lanka have hired foreign consultants to drive and train staff in Six Sigma at huge cost. In the Health sector, the Joint Commission International adopts many of these quality control practices also at significant cost. However, these concepts can be used for medium and even smaller firms with great advantages as there can be 30-40 % cost savings delivered within 3-6 months with local consultants. The use of internal and external benchmarks can propel organisations to reach much higher standards and deliver internationally ranked products which then can be marketed much more effectively.