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Title: Improving the performance of Six Sigma : a case study of the Six Sigma process at Ford Motor Company
Author: Thompson, Steven James
ISNI:       0000 0004 2733 895X
Awarding Body: University of Bedfordshire
Current Institution: University of Bedfordshire
Date of Award: 2007
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This thesis concerns the question, "Why is the performance of Six Sigma within The Ford Motor Company below that experienced in other companies, and what can be done to improve it?" The aim of the thesis was to make recommendations that would improve the performance of Six Sigma within the Ford Motor Company. Results from the literature were categorised according to headings found in the European Foundation for Quality Model (EFQM): strategy, people, process and leadership. The key factors identified from the literature review as being significant for a successful Six Sigma deployment were that projects were aligned to the strategy of the organisation, individuals were clear on their role and had appropriate skills, processes were well defined and understood and leadership team was committed to Six Sigma. The research started with a review of the results from two employee surveys. The first was given to Black Belts and asked questions concerning Six Sigma. The second was given to all the employees in the organisation. The survey data failed to identify the cause of lower than expected results, and so the investigation followed with a series of twelve interviews. When these also failed to identify the factor or factors responsible for deployment performance, the project database was reviewed. The Define, Measure, Analyse, Improve and Control steps (DMAIC) were then analysed using Gardner’s Model of Process Maturity. The thesis concluded that the main influence driving Six Sigma performance was the low process maturity of the project selection and scoping processes and this gave rise to variable project performance. The thesis then presents material to improve project performance including a process map, a process Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA) of the project selection and scoping process, a control plan that ensures that the projects are on track and a macro using Excel and Minitab that works within the Ford Motor Company system to provide automatic evaluation of projects.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Six Sigma ; Ford Motor Company ; quality control ; quality management ; N210 Management Techniques