Six Sigma DMAIC Analyze Phase Checklist

The DMAIC methodology should be used when a product or process is in existence at your company but is not meeting customer specification or is not performing adequately. For DMAIC milestone reviews, there are certain deliverables, checkpoints, questions and concerns that the Black Belt and improvement team should be aware of prior to a tollgate/milestone review.

How often should this be used?
When working through a DMAIC Analyze tollgate review

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Six Sigma DMAIC Analyze Phase

Data and Process Analysis

Questions To Determine Appropriate Application:

  • What does the data say about the performance of the business process?
  • Did any value-added analysis or ‘lean thinking’ take place to identify some of the gaps shown on the ‘as is’ process map?
  • Was a detailed process map created to amplify critical steps of the ‘as is’ business process?
  • How was the map generated, verified, and validated?
  • What did the team gain from developing a sub-process map?
  • What were the crucial ‘moments of truth’ on the map?
  • Were there any cycle time improvement opportunities identified from the process analysis?
  • Were any designed experiments used to generate additional insight into the data analysis?
  • Did any additional data need to be collected?
  • What model would best explain the behaviour of output variables in relation to input variables?
Identify gaps between current performance and the goal performance.

Root Cause Analysis

Questions To Determine Appropriate Application:

  • What tools were used to generate the list of possible causes?
  • Was a cause-and-effect diagram used to explore the different types of causes (or sources of variation)?
  • What tools were used to narrow the list of possible causes?
  • Were Pareto charts (or similar) used to portray the ‘heavy hitters’ (or key sources of variation)?
  • What conclusions were drawn from the team’s data collection and analysis?
  • How did the team reach these conclusions?
Generate list of possible causes (sources of variation).
Segment and stratify possible causes (sources of variation).
Prioritize list of ‘vital few’ causes (key sources of variation).
Verify and quantify the root causes of variation.

Quantifying the Gap/Opportunity

Questions To Determine Appropriate Application:

  • What is the cost of poor quality as supported by the team’s analysis?
  • Is the process severely broken such that a re-design is necessary?
  • Would this project lend itself to a DFSS project?
  • What are the revised rough order estimates of the financial savings/opportunity for the improvement project?
  • Have the problem and goal statements been updated to reflect the additional knowledge gained from the analyze phase?
  • Have any additional benefits been identified that will result from closing all or most of the gaps?
  • What were the financial benefits resulting from any ‘ground fruit or low-hanging fruit’ (quick fixes)?
  • What quality tools were used to get through the analyze phase?
Determine the performance gap.
Display and communicate the gap/opportunity in financial terms.
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