Title: Six Sigma: a SWOT analysis

Authors: Thong-Ngee Goh, Loon-Ching Tang, Shao-Wei Lam, Yin-Feng Gao

Addresses: Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, National University of Singapore, 1 Engineering Drive 2, 117576, Singapore. ' Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, National University of Singapore, 1 Engineering Drive 2, 117576, Singapore. ' Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, National University of Singapore, 1 Engineering Drive 2, 117576, Singapore. ' Phitek System Limited, 1711#, Oriental Plaza, Jianshe Road, LuoHu District, Shenzhen, China

Abstract: Six Sigma as an initiative for quality improvement and business excellence has been a subject of intense study and discussion in the past 15 years. Although concepts and templates, such as Define-Measure-Analyse-Improve-Control (DMAIC), have been frequently presented and advocated, there exist a number of different perspectives as to what fundamentally Six Sigma is capable of. In this paper, we examine the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) associated with the application of the common version of Six Sigma. Some statistical, engineering and management aspects are considered. Thus, a realistic technical as well as management review of Six Sigma is made, 20 years after its inception.

Keywords: six sigma review; design for six sigma; DFSS; Define-Measure-Analyse-Improve-Control; DMAIC; strengths; weaknesses; opportunities; threats; SWOT analysis; quality improvement; business excellence.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSSCA.2006.011116

International Journal of Six Sigma and Competitive Advantage, 2006 Vol.2 No.3, pp.233 - 242

Published online: 16 Oct 2006 *

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