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Comparison between six sigma and Total Quality Management Compare and Contrast Essay

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Updated: Jul 5th, 2019

Even though six sigma and TQM are efficient apparatus for quality management, they have a number of differences. Six Sigma is a management plan initially designed by Motorola Company to develop the quality of production by recognizing and eliminating causes of failures. It was also designed to reduce inconsistencies in the production process.

The process was established by Bill Smith in the early 1920’s. on the other hand, Total Quality Management is a long-term effort made by workers to ensure customer satisfaction. It was developed by Deming, Juran, and Feigenbaum in the early 1920’s. Six sigma is not only designed for quality control, but also to improve customer satisfaction by reducing shortages.

It also defines and improves production processes. This management plan can be used to assess the root cause of a setback and establish appropriate solutions. Conversely, TQM applies plan, data, and efficient communications to incorporate quality control into the culture and processes of a company.

Six sigma has many methodologies including DMAIC, DMADV, and the 5Whys. A DMAIC plan method has five segments. The first step is the definition of the problem, customers’ demands, and project objectives. The second phase is to measure the main characteristics of the present process and gather relevant information.

The third phase of DMAIC is the study of data followed by improving the present process depending on data analysis. The last phase is to control future processes as this will solve any problem which deviates from a company’s target. DMADV project methodology also has five stages. The first phase is to define goals that are in line with the requirements of consumer project strategy.

The second phase is to measure and recognize CTQ’s, product potentiality and dangers. Third step involves the analysis to create options. This is followed by designing details which involves the optimization and preparation for design authentication. The last step is to verify the design, execute production procedures, and present it to the proprietors of the process.

In TQM, the customer establishes the level of quality. All the workers are also required to take part in the processes aimed at achieving objectives. It majorly focuses on the production thinking. This process involves a planned and systematic approach to attain an organization’s objectives. The main driving force of Total Quality Management is continual process enhancement.

It provides viable solutions for improvement and effective competition. The process of Six Sigma depends on the “5 Whys.” This exercise starts with a statement of the setback followed by the identification of the root cause. Arguably, the 5 iterations of “Why” establishes the main cause of the setback.

Six Sigma has a number of functions. For instance, senior managers are accountable for establishing the implementation of Six Sigma objectives. Campaigners jointly implement Six Sigma and provide guidance to black belts. Senior black belts recognized by campaigners provide in-house training on Six Sigma. Therefore, the process provides superior and efficient outcome compared to TQM.

The process is also more precise and result oriented than TQM. The other difference is that Six Sigma is more complex than TQM as it requires highly trained personnel.

This clearly explains why their trained workers are licensed as “green belts” or “black belts” according to their level of competency. In TQM further developments cannot be realized after reaching the saturation point while Six Sigma attains the saturation level by instigating a next point quality process.

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IvyPanda. 2019. "Comparison between six sigma and Total Quality Management." July 5, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/comparison-between-six-sigma-and-total-quality-management/.

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IvyPanda. (2019) 'Comparison between six sigma and Total Quality Management'. 5 July.

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