Demand for quality consumer goods and service as a result of increased consumer awareness has made today business in world to focus on quality control within their systems. To achieve this objective, they have been focusing Six Sigma and ISO quality management tools. Six Sigma is a measure that shows how well production of goods or services is performing. “The higher the Sigma value the, the higher the performance quality of the organization’s process,” (Crago, 2000 para 6).
Six Sigma quality assurance tool measure the competence of the production system to achieve defective free work and ensure good and services produced leads to consumer satisfaction. According to International Organization for Standardization (ISO), Six Sigma is statistical business-improvement approach that seeks to find and eliminate defects and their causes from an organization’s processes, focusing on outputs of critical importance to consumers” (Shaw Resources 2000 para 2).
That is, it is a move towards eliminating defects by reducing course variation geared towards consumer satisfaction. On the other hand ISO for example ISO 9001 is a quality, management system incorporating quality management operations standards for particular industries. ISO management system that defines “… organizational structures, processes, responsibilities and resources used to assure minimum standards of quality and can be used to evaluate an organizations overall quality management efforts” (Rice, 2008 para 1).
ISO management system is done through provision of the certificates to the companies that qualify for the same. Certification acts as an assurance to the consumers that acceptable operational systems are in place in the company and the quality standard are met. This results to confidence to the consumers on the quality of good or service produced. Comparison of ISO and Six Sigma show that the two provide two major different functions. Firstly, ISO entirely deals with the quality management system.
On the other hand Six Sigma involves the strategies as well as methodology for organizational operation improvement. Secondly, ISO requires a continuous improvement process to guide problem solving and decision making process in the business operation. ISO as compared to Six Sigma does not provide a defined improvement process and how it should look. On the other hand, Six Sigma gives a particular needed improvement process in the business operation. Finally, ISO provide template or basis for organizational overall quality management evaluation effort while Six Sigma does not.
Combination of ISO and Six Sigma provide a hybrid tool which give integration of methodology ensuring delivering of objectives set by ISO. Combination of two in the business operation ensures there is prevention of defects at all production processes from design and in the course of serving. It provide with statistical techniques necessary for controlling and verification of production capability as well as product categorization. This hybrid gives the basis of investigation and establishes cause of the defects concerning to product, development and excellence system.
It also ensures continuous enhancement of the quality of goods and services. In a nutshell Six Sigma maintains ISO and assists an organization management in living up to ISO conditions. “ISO is an excellent vehicle for documenting and maintaining the process management system involving Six Sigma. Besides, extensive training is required by both systems for successful deployment” (Rice, 2008 para 5). Therefore, it is important to implementation the to quality management tools because form the above argument the consumer satisfaction is more assure as a result of their integration.