SMTA International Conference Proceedings

Improving Supply Chain Velocity Through Six-Sigma Application and Tools

Author: Harsh Kohli
Company: Zensar Technologies
Date Published: 10/14/2012   Conference: SMTA International

Abstract: Increasing trend in globalization, economic conditions and competition are making supply chains more complex and more vulnerable to disruption which has direct impact on the profitability of the organization and customer satisfaction. Since supply chain performance encompasses stake holder organizations, processes, people, applications and tools it becomes imperative for Chief Operating Officers to periodically evaluate the state of the supply chain, digitize the visibility of KPI's (Key Performance Indicators), benchmark against industry's best practices and continuously improve performance and velocity.

Six Sigma DMAIC (Define Measure Analyze Improve and Control) methodology can be used to assess and identify low hanging fruit that can help in streamlining supply chain operations, in addition to refining processes and automating them where possible. End to end assessment of the supply chain reveals the latency and the dependencies in the supply chain. Additionally the risk in the supply chain can be quantified and appropriately mitigated. The assessment process also helps identify the processes that are not core business processes but that are still needed to run the business. Such non-core processes can be delegated to 3rd party organizations that specialize in them thereby reducing the complexity in the supply chain and increasing the bandwidth of employees who can now focus on core supply chain processes that are critical and where the organization has competitive advantage.

To monitor and improve processes, organizations must have Business Intelligence digitized that provides close to real-time visibility into the Supply Chain. The BI tools implemented should also be proactive in alarming on key boundary limits so that supply chain stakeholders can take corrective actions before catastrophes happen. This will help organizations increase the responsiveness of the supply chain processes across all the levels and direct improvement opportunities that create value for the organization and its trading partners. This paper will go into the details of assessment methodology, its implementation in addition to BI tools benefits and usage that can help any manufacturing companies supply chain be best in class.

Key Words: 

Supply Chain, Six Sigma

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