Design For Six Sigma – Not Just For Engineers!

Posted by on Feb 1, 2020 in Design for Six Sigma, DFSS, DMADOV, DMADV, IDDOV, IDOV, New Process Design | 0 comments

There’s a common misconception that Design for Six Sigma (DFSS) only applies to engineering designs.  In reality, it can be applied with equal effectiveness to a variety of tasks such as billing, marketing, customer service, and just about anything that can benefit from innovative, streamlined, customer-friendly designs – which is almost everything.
DFSS is all about focusing on prevention instead of cures.  It complements the Six Sigma improvement methodology by attacking the flaws of products and processes during the design stage.  While Six Sigma focuses on improving existing designs in the production stage, DFSS concentrates on creating new and better designs.
DFSS uses a unique set of tools different from traditional Six Sigma.  Using these methods, new designs can achieve performance levels previously thought unattainable and do it cost effectively.  Your success depends on how effectively the tools and techniques are applied.  Common tools used in DFSS include:
  • Axiomatic design
  • Design for X (DFX)
  • FMEA
  • Process simulation
  • Pugh matrix
  • Quality Function Deployment (QFD)
  • Robust product design
  • Statistical tolerancing
  • Systematic design
  • Tolerance design
  • TRIZ
Whereas traditional Six Sigma uses the 5-step DMAIC process, DFSS has several different process that have become common practice.  They include:
  • DMADV – Define, Measure, Analyze, Design, Verify
  • DMADOV – Define, Measure, Analyze, Design, Optimize, Verify
  • DMEDI – Define, Measure, Explore, Develop, Implement
  • IDDOV – Identify, Define, Develop, Optimize, Verify
  • IDOV – Identify, Design, Optimize, Validate

Most companies chose one of these methodologies and insert the various tools within the corresponding step.  For instance, the DMADOV process might include the following:

DFSS was created to enhance innovation.  A lot of time is spent upfront understanding what customers really want, which traditionally many companies have not taken the time or made the effort to do.  The DFSS approach leads to designs that dramatically reduce the need for later inspection, test, and rework.

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