Six sigma training

The 6 sigma methodology implies the presence of trained specialists in the company for the implementation and successful development of business improvement projects. 6 sigma training is divided into several levels. Each of the levels provides knowledge of a certain set of principles and techniques. The transition to a higher level of knowledge requires from a specialist to have some experience in applying the already acquired knowledge.

The Six Sigma project team members perform the following roles in accordance with ISO 13053-1:2011:

  • General/ Project Sponsor;
  • Champion;
  • Deployment Manager;
  • Master Black Belt;
  • Black Belt;
  • Green Belt;
  • Yellow Belt.

The minimum level of competencies of 6 sigma specialists should have includes:

  • Computer competency;
  • Understanding the customer orientation principles;
  • Interpersonal relationship management skills;
  • Motivation Management Skills;
  • Mathematical training;
  • Practical problem solving skills;
  • Presentation skills;
  • Skills in process management and continuous improvement;
  • Project management skills;
  • Knowledge of six sigma tools;
  • Knowledge of statistical methods and application of software on statistical methods;
  • Skills of preparation and conducting trainings;
  • Coaching and mentoring skills.

The composition and degree of ownership of these competencies varies depending on the role in the project. The assessment of the competence degree is given quite generally according to the ISO 13053-1:2011 standard. It is not given for all roles, but only for Yellow, Green, Black and the Master Black belt.

The scope of training

The ISO 13053-1:2011 standard sets general requirements for the scope and composition of programs for which 6 Sigma is trained. Education for a particular role includes theoretical classes, practical assignments and participation in 6 sigma projects.

The scope of training for various roles according to ISO 13053-1:2011 is assumed to be as follows:

  • Project Sponsor. It is conducted theoretical training in the amount of 1 day for this role. The sponsor must understand the essence of the 6 sigma methodology and to know the basic tools of Six sigma.
  • Champion/Deployment Manager. These roles are trained by 6 sigma only on theoretical issues in the amount of 3 days. The Champion/ Deployment Manager must understand the theory of 6 sigma, be able to prioritize projects and choose the most effective ones, determine the scope of the project, manage the progress of execution, and understand the end result.
  • Master Black Belt. It is theoretical and practical 6 sigma training for this role. The amount of theoretical training should be at least 10 days. The amount of practical training is at least 2 days. Master Black belt must complete at least two 6 sigma projects. Master Black belt can be a specialist who has previously been trained in the Black belt program.
  • Black Belt. This role is trained by 6 sigma on theoretical issues in the amount of 20 days, on practical tasks in the amount of 5 days, and the specialist must complete at least 2 six sigma projects. A Black belt can become a specialist who has previously been trained under the green belt program.
  • Green Belt. Training on theoretical issues is carried out in the amount of 5 days, on practical tasks - in the amount of 1 day. A specialist must complete one 6 sigma project in order to complete 6 sigma training under the Green Belt program.
  • Yellow Belt. This role is being trained by Six sigma only on theoretical issues in the amount of the 1 day. The Yellow Belt should be known with the main goals of 6 sigma, the principles of the 6 sigma methodology, and the purpose of 6 sigma tools.

6 Sigma Training Program

The ISO 13053-1:2011 standard specifies a typical Six sigma training program only for the Black and Green belts. These programs are reference programs. Programs for other roles are not regulated.

The training program for the Green belt includes the following topics:

  • Introduction to the 6 sigma methodology;
  • 6 sigma Project Selection Principles;
  • Defining the scope of the project;
  • DMAIC methodology;
  • Development of process maps;
  • Waste analysis;
  • Cause and effect diagram;
  • The concept of variation, repeatability and stability of the process;
  • FMEA analysis;
  • Data Types;
  • Data collection plan;
  • Measurement system analysis;
  • Reproducibility analysis;
  • Pareto analysis and diagram;
  • Span diagram;
  • Histogram;
  • Scatter Chart;
  • PDPC Diagram;
  • Control charts;
  • Error protection.

The Black Belt training program includes the following topics:

  • Principles of project selection;
  • Deployment of the Six Sigma project;
  • Cost modeling;
  • Benchmarking;
  • Identification of losses;
  • 6 sigma measurement;
  • Identification of customers;
  • Identification of problems;
  • Development of process maps;
  • Cause and effect diagrams;
  • Project team management;
  • Creating a project passport;
  • Project management;
  • Gantt Chart;
  • Data Types;
  • Process variations;
  • FMEA analysis;
  • Measurement system analysis;
  • Data collection tools;
  • Statistical methods;
  • Reproducibility of the process;
  • Hypothesis testing;
  • Single factor analysis (ANOVA);
  • Multivariate analysis;
  • Regression and correlation;
  • 5 why method;
  • Planning experiments;
  • Process audit;
  • Error protection;
  • Statistical process management;
  • 5S method.

Six sigma training is conducted by many companies. The composition of the training programs varies according to the topics and scope. Companies provide training at seven levels. These levels do not always correspond with the roles defined in the ISO 13053-1:2011 standard.

The following training levels can be selected from the 6 sigma training proposals:

  • General;
  • Champion;
  • Master Black Belt;
  • Black Belt;
  • Green Belt;
  • Yellow Belt;
  • White Belt.

The most similar programs relate to the Black, Green and Yellow belts. These programs are well-established and "traditional" for the 6 sigma concept. Training programs for General, Champion, Master Black belt and White belt may be difference depending on the training organization.