What is Six Sigma?

Six Sigma is a methodology used in business and manufacturing to improve the quality of processes and reduce defects. It focuses on identifying and eliminating variations and errors in processes to improve efficiency and effectiveness.

The Six Sigma method provides the organization with the tools necessary for improving the quality and capability of a business process. A Six Sigma-trained professional will be able to use Six Sigma to improve the process and ensure quality. It is necessary to make it comfortable for customers. It is mandatory to make them feel the money they have paid is worth it.


When it comes to business the first thing to be focused on is quality. No matter what the business the most important thing is customer satisfaction. Customer satisfaction comes from quality.  Six Sigma focuses on ensuring the quality of the products.

For customers to receive the best products, the Six Sigma principle should be followed. This principle consists of seven quality control tools. The tools will be of ardent help in producing consistent and improved tools. 

QC Tools for Six Sigma Projects in 2024

Advanced-Data Analytics: With the rise of big data and artificial intelligence, there is more emphasis on advanced data analytics techniques within Six Sigma, such as machine learning algorithms.


Digital Transformation: Integration of Digital Technologies into manufacturing processes may lead to the development of new tools and approaches within Six Sigma, such as digital twins for process optimization.


Blockchain for Supply Chain Management: In industries with complex supply chains, Six Sigma practitioners might explore the use of blockchain technology for enhancing traceability and transparency, thus improving quality control processes.


Remote Collaboration Tools: Given the increasing prevalence of remote work, Six Sigma practitioners might utilize new collaboration tools and platforms to facilitate virtual problem-solving sessions and project management.


What are the 7 QC tools?

7 QC tools consist of simple graphical and statistical techniques that help in solving quality-related issues. It’s a basic tool that with a bit of training anyone would be able to implement to solve complex issues.

Six Sigma QC tools are used to identify key issues, control fluctuations in product quality, and give solutions to avoid future defects. 7 Basic QC tools can be used in any part of the work starting from the product development phase to delivery.


What are the QC Tools?

The 7 QC Tools as accepted by the American Society for Quality (ASQ) are very effective and they are

  1. Cause and Effect Diagram/ Fishbone Diagram
  2. Pareto charts
  3. Control charts
  4. Scatter Diagrams
  5. Histograms
  6. Flow Charts
  7. Check Lists


  1. Cause and Effect Diagram/ Fishbone Diagram

The first tool in 7 QC tools is the Fishbone Diagram. This helps in organizing the ideas and in finding the relationship between the potential cause and effect. It also finds potential problems through formatting, arranging, and organizing them as themes and sub-themes. It is an effort to identify the cause.

It broadens our thinking when the problems are being listed. The list of potential causes, problems, and effects will result in concrete action. It finally results in finding out if the thing is the cause of the problem and how much it is affecting the outcome.

In industries the causes are grouped as people, methods, machines, materials, measurements, and environment. In short, we can say this helps in identifying the root causes behind the problems. 


2. Pareto Charts

The second in the 7 QC Tools is the Pareto charts. Pareto Charts revolve around the concept of the 80-20 rule. According to this 80% of the major problems are caused by 20% of underlying major factors called vital few. At the same time, 20% of problems are caused by 80% of minor factors called trivial many.

Pareto Chart is used in prioritizing. It helps in prioritizing the contributing factors that would make a bigger impact on the problem and open up many more opportunities. It is a communication tool which works the best. 

It can help in sorting priorities when making important decisions. It is easy to comprehend because it mainly consists of reading, compiling, and understanding the bar diagrams. This chart helps in studying and analyzing the frequency of occurrences of events in a process. This results in finding the biggest contributors.


3. Control Charts

The third of the 7 basic QC tools is the Control Chart. The best tool to investigate and find out the variation in a process is called a Control Chart. A Control Chart is mostly called the Time Series Plot which is used to monitor a process over time.

A Control Chart is a statistical chart that helps in determining whether the process is in control or not. It also makes sure that the process can meet the demands of the customer. This chart also determines if the process is stable and can meet the current condition.

Control Charts are very popular and are used in the quality control technique of Six Sigma. They not only help in meeting customer expectations but also in predicting process performance. It helps in understanding various process production patterns and how process patterns change with time and production. It is useful in determining the appropriate type of action depending on the degree of variation in a process.


4. Scatter Diagrams

Scatter Diagram is also known as the Scatter Plot or Correlation Graph. It is very helpful in visualizing the relationship between two variables. It is a statistical tool. The main goal is to establish a strong relationship between the cause and the problem.

The plot depicts the dependent variable on the Y-axis and the independent variable on the X-axis plotted as dots on the common intersection point. The relationship can be curvier, curvilinear, polynomial, quadratic, exponential, or logarithmic. We can say that the stronger the correlation, the stronger the relationship will be. 


5. Histograms

A histogram is the pictorial representation of data. It is a bar graph representing the frequency. To put it short, frequency is distributed on each bar. The histogram helps in finding the density of data in any distribution. It also helps in understanding repetitive factors.

It helps in prioritizing factors and helps in giving attention to matters that require immediate solving or attention. It is also advantageous when it comes to understanding the location, spreading, and shaping date. It also helps in finding the missing data and potential threats.


6. Flow Charts

Flow Charts can be called the visual representation of a process that depicts who completed activities in a particular sequence, Hands-off between departments or individuals, and Internal and external operation boundaries.

It works on the method of dividing it into subcategories. It is classified into levels, sublevels, groups, and classes which help in understanding and solving problems. The primary goal of float charts is to divide and conquer.


7. Checklists

Checklists help depict and summarise graphically a tally count of an event. Checklists are usually used to count the frequency and number of occurrences of an event like defects and non-conformances. 

Checklists will provide rough countable data in a graphical form. It would be a summarised draft that offers information on defects and the date of occurrences. When the data is quantitative the checklists can be called tally sheets. 

 The main purpose of checklists is to keep updating the occurrences of events and notice all the frequency. It helps in keeping tabs on new occurrences. 

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When to use these tools?

These tools which are collectively called 7 QC tools are used in Six Sigma. Flow charts play a pivotal role in the defined phase of the DMAIC process. Fishbone Diagram, Pareto Chart, and Control Charts are used in the measure phase. Scatter, histogram, and checklist are relevant in the analysis phase. Control Charts can be relevant in the improvement phase.

Benefits of 7 QC tools

The use of these 7 basic QC tools will lead to a structured and improved production process. It results in enhancing the production quality. In helping a company to assess, and examine the production process to easily identify the key challenges and problems Six Sigma QC tools are very effective. The most enticing use of QC tools is it is easy to understand and implement. Some benefits of QC tools are:

  • It provides a structured path for solving problems and improving quality.
  • It is easiest to implement.
  • It is easy despite that it is extremely effective.
  • It provides a very scientific and logical method.
  • It provides an 80/20 rule which results in 80% gain with 20% effect.
  • It improves the quality and service of the product.
  • During the process, problems can be identified.
  • Any issue can be easily analyzed.
  • Root-cause analysis and problem-solving can be done with the aid of fishbone training.
  • It encourages teamwork and creates a healthy spirit between workers.
  • It goes to the root causes analyses the impact and solves it permanently.
  • It increases and enhances customer satisfaction.
  • It takes a very short period.

What is Lean Six Sigma?

Lean Six Sigma is an effective method to use a collaborative team effort. It helps in improving performance systematically by removing waste and reducing variations. When Six Sigma focuses on reducing variation Lean Six Sigma works towards removing waste.


Lean Six Sigma Green Belt Certification

If you want to master 7 basic QC tools, a Lean Six Sigma certification would be advisable. A Lean Six Sigma course emphasizes the understanding of enhanced problem-solving skills. It also explains the DMAIC which means Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, and Control model. It also helps in working on Six Sigma projects with an unmatched team spirit.

Henry Harvin Lean Six Sigma Green Belt Certification

Henry Harvin’s lean Six Sigma Green Belt Certification enables one to master 7 basic QC tools. One of the best places for learning Six Sigma is Henry Harvin. Lean Six Sigma Green Belt Certification by Henry Harvin comes with more benefits, and it is considered suitable for learning the QC tools.

  • You will be able to learn fact-based problem-solving and data-based decision-making.
  • Make customer-centric decisions
  • Learn to use data analytic tools
  • Learn to sharpen your business acumen and commitment to the improvement process
  • Learn project management skills and leadership skills.
  • Understand the high-quality product service.
  • Learn to effectively use & basic QC tools
  • Look beyond the present and become a well-equipped professional for the future.

If you want to enhance your planning and processing skills and become a successful professional learn the 7 Basic QC skills. A certification wouldn’t hurt but will become a perk in your resume. Hurry up and enroll yourselves in the courses and enhance your skills.

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